“This can’t be right.” I looked down at the address for the shop on the map: 250 rue de rivoli. But I knew that address didn’t line up with its drawn position on the map I was holding in my hand. “Oh well,” I thought, “I’ll go to one of these other shops marked as adjacent to the phantom one in question, even though they were 194 and 194 bis. I was just past the Hotel Regina, which some might remember from the very first Bourne movie.
I poked my head into what looked very much like one of those standard money changing places I so despise. “They take passport photos?” I wondered. Sure enough, they didn’t. The “helpful” map, which I had gotten from the US embassy which allegedly showed locations that took US-standard passport photos, was wrong on three counts. Alas.
I wandered into a nearby copy shop and asked in French if they took American passport photos (slim chance) and they gave me directions to a shop that did. Photo Pyramides, 14 rue des Pyramides, in the 1st. 10€ gets you four photos, and you’ll only need 2 for your application. As I’ve mentioned before, I’ve run my poor passport into the ground with stamps and I need to renew three years early to make room for future travel in that time.
I’ve added this resource to my FAQ, which contains contact information for English-speakers in Paris for banking, renter’s insurance, apartments, cell phone and internet coverage, health care, taxes, etc. I give this FAQ to all who use my consultation service. This FAQ also features a checklist for visitor visa renewal and obtainment of Profession Liberale.
Moral of the story: trust, but verify.