"At Bastille she emerged from the station onto rue de la Roquette, where she paused to take in her surroundings, shading her eyes against the sun. The traffic circling the monument, the cafés packed with afternoon idlers and tourists, the steps of the Opéra Bastille on which other idlers basked, the pickpockets and scam artists circulating in pairs among the pedestrians that thronged the sidewalks: all this Odile had seen innumerable times, yet in the space of half a second it was as if a veil had been lifted to reveal a scene completely new to her, one in which every particular was strange and without precedent. She knew where she was, but each thing she saw was the first of its kind: the first bicyclist, the first wine carafe, the first woman to tie a sweater around her waist by the arms. The air shimmered. The first pigeon, the first waiter, the first menu to be snapped shut. The first book."

The Same River Twice, a thriller by Ted Mooney (Knopf, 2010), pages 201-202

Odile, the book's heroine, is emerging from the Métro station at the place de la Bastille in Paris on a summer afternoon. The monument referred to is the July Column, which celebrates the Revolution of 1830. Ted Mooney is an American novelist, short story writer and art critic whose work has been translated into Japanese, Italian, German, Dutch, and French. His 1990 novel, Easy Travel to Other Planets, coined the phrase "information sickness" to describe the effects of too much media exposure.