Going Postal/Passage D’Enfer
Along the aptly named Passage d’Enfer (boulevard Raspail, 14th) is the remnant of the old ‘Royal’ mailing system. It may not be akin to discovering a Coelacanth, but is a cool visual example of Paris’ fading past.
Before the current ‘odd & even’ house numbering system, the first house on a street might begin with a number which then kept increasing till the end of the street. The numbers then ‘jumped’ across the street and kept increasing as they returned to the beginning of the street. The result? A house address of #1 while the one facing it is #54… thus mystifying delivery folks, those a late for dinner and giving rise perhaps to infamous ‘your check is in the mail’ excuse. Its still a funky area to wander about, so if nearby, meander over!
I was there on a typically rainy spring day…but with the sheen on the Paves, the hidden tucked way nature of the place and the alluring colors and architectural style of the buildings, you have no option but to enjoy yourself!
If you like this story please share! If you’ve questions about Paris please don’t hesitate to ask. This is my –our!, city so ask away! Cheers DP