05/15/2013 02:38 pm ET Updated Feb 02, 2016

Gay Paris: Not All It's Cracked Up To Be

It's Paris under the spring sunshine. Couples stroll hand-in-hand, steal kisses while window shopping past chic boutiques, or whisper sweet-nothings over marble-topped tables at a sidewalk cafe.

These are familiar cliches of the romantic French capital, except that along the Rue des Archives, the couples in question are likely to be same-sex.

This is the Marais neighborhood, a favorite hangout of gay Parisians and a scene of celebration on April 23 when lawmakers in the Assemblee nationale, just down the Seine river, voted 331 to 225 to write same-sex marriage into law.

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