And no, I am not talking about one of the most beautiful songs ever by Michael Oldfield. Remember?
Human contacts will continue, undeniably, and for my generation which grew with Fantomas, Mylene Demongeout, REAL and only Les Trois Mousquetaires, Alain Delon, Mirelle Mathieu, Michel Platini and memory of De Gaulle, and of fighter regiment Normandy-Niemen--this France is no more and we understand that. Russian youth, I don't think they care that much about France and Paris one way or another and most of their awareness of France today comes by the way of Les Bleus who became World Champions in 2018 in Russia. Other than that--it is just another EU location to be avoided. That's about it. I know some Russians who traveled to France (including Paris) recently--they were not impressed, to put it politely. Forget about Marseilles, Russians would rather go to a friendlier locations. Many prefer Malta or Italy. Many go to Crimea, those who are wealthy--go to Sochi.
It is anti-climatic, almost mundane, how Russia parted with France and what it represented for Russia for the last century and a half. France simply doesn't matter that much anymore to Russians, except for the thieves (a euphemism for oligarchs and their cabal) from 1990s and early 2000s who managed to buy expensive real estate in Nice and condos at ski resort at Courchevel. This is life and even once stunningly beautiful Alizee looks today as an unwashed tattooed former porn-star still clinging to her former glory. Maybe a sad but fitting, nonetheless, end to a career of once promising pop-star or, if to draw parallels, once superpower. I will not say that I am not sad because of that, I am. But I am not 14 anymore and I lost more than my "personal" France in my life.