Parisians rarely venture out into the suburbs. Many though are obliged to quit the city on a daily basis to go to their place of work, but even on these occasions they are whisked in and out by car or train, and spend as little time as possible in this neighbouring environment.
I am one of these people, taking a train each day away from Paris. My morning commute takes me beyond the city limits, over the peripherique and across the Seine, out into another world. As I leave Paris, the heights of the buildings drop, and I can begin to see a broad skyline, punctuated with the straight lines of the overhead power cables.
It is the raggedness that gives these places their charm. Paris with its strict planning rules and its facade of wealth makes for a very homogeneous picture which in itself can become dull. The suburbs, with their tower blocks neighbouring quaint houses and Parisian style Haussmannian buildings makes for a much more disorderly spectacle. As you walk through the suburbs, you literally never know what will be around the corner.
Pasted around the town, an affiche for an upcoming event. In Paris, this poster would have been laughed out of town for being so uncool, but here it is a celebration of a local community. Those that will attend this event care little for the snobbery of their more illustrious neighbours, and simply want to meet friends, eat some traditional foods and dance to the music they grew up with and have always known.
It's a sign of the suburbs. Defiant, unfashionable, proud, untidy and authentic.