Monday, February 11, 2008

All Acts Of Love And Pleasure

Liberté, Equalité, Fraternité!

Samson, who co-owns a boutique in Paris, isn't the lithe Frenchwoman of the American imagination. But she's wearing a stretchy black dress with a plunging neckline and flipping through pictures from her recent birthday party, in which her 52-year-old boyfriend gazes at her with obvious rapture. She describes this period of her life -- post-divorce, her three kids out of the house -- as her most uncomplicatedly sexy one. "Now there's just the seduction between a man and a woman," she says.

Older women in Paris don't actually look any better than the ones in New York. The difference is that the French typically don't see sex as a privilege for the young and beautiful. They see it as one of life's most basic pleasures -- something women or men would not give up without a fight . . . or in my case, perhaps a second passport.

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