A couple on honeymoon in Paris captured 17 incredible images after the attacks.

Newlywed couple Ryan Gielen and Katy Wright-Mead had just arrived in Paris on their honeymoon when the attacks began.

An impromptu memorial for the victims. All photos by Ryan Gielen/Honeymoon in Paris, used with permission.


Disappointed with some of the coverage of the aftermath of the shootings, Gielen, a filmmaker who runs a production company back in the United States, decided to put his camera to use.

"I think it's really easy, cliche, and not entirely true that the city was in a state of shock," Gielen told Upworthy of the media coverage.

What struck the couple the most in the days following the attacks was the abundance — and richness — of conversation taking place.

"There was pain and anguish and sadness and tears, and there were memorials popping up," Gielen said. "People came to grieve, but it seemed to both of us that just as many people were there to engage with one another."

The couple decided to document their trip on their Facebook page, "Honeymoon in Paris," which contains dozens of incredible still frames from Gielen's footage. The frank, intimate images they captured present a city in one of its rawest moments — persevering — through the eyes of two people experiencing it for the very first time.

1. Deborah, the manager of a bistro near the site of the shootings, talks about why she felt she had to reopen the very next day.

"At first I didn't know if I was allowed to open. ... I said, 'I'm going to open, so people will be able to talk, or if they need toilets or something like that," she told the couple in a conversation they later recounted on Facebook.

"I will be open... You have to live... I won't let them scare me."

2. A soccer fan showing the press his ticket from the previous night's game at the Stade de France, where an attack was narrowly thwarted.

"He sought out cameras and then displayed the ticket for as long as they needed. Once the cameras moved on, he went looking for the next," Gielen wrote on Facebook.

3. A tourist notices a series of blood stains on the street near Le Bataclan music venue.

89 people were killed during a standoff at Le Bataclan, the deadliest part of the attacks.

4. A young man placing tributes to the victims on the Monument à la République.

"He circled the ledge of the monument for nearly two hours, placing mourners' flowers, and taping letters, posters and flags, and then just walked off," Gielen wrote.

5. The monument at night, transformed into an impromptu memorial.

"I moved to New York City exactly a month after 9/11, so the atmosphere to me feels familiar in that way," Wright-Mead said. "It feels like a universal moment."

6. A group of total strangers gathers to debate politics, religion, and violence — in the middle of the plaza.

The night after the attacks, the couple encountered a number of spontaneous "salons" — lively arguments over the meaning and significance of the attacks, often between people who had just met.

"It's something really extraordinary that I've never seen before," Gielen said.

7. A Muslim man "playfully kisses a man he was arguing with."

Following the kiss, the duo continued arguing for almost an hour, according to the couple.

"I think it was sort of electric with conversation — intellectual conversation, and people were really alert, but sort of communicative, connected to each other," Wright-Mead said of their experience the weekend following the attacks. "Everyone we talked to was open and willing to talk, and sort of debate. But yeah, I'd say it was high energy, for sure."

8. Another young Muslim man, who spent the evening passionately arguing that the terrorists don't represent Islam.

"I asked, 'Do you feel responsible for explaining Islam, or apologizing for Islam to your people? Is that what you're doing here?'" Gielen said. "And his response was, 'No, I came to town to buy a gift for my girlfriend for her birthday, but in passing by and seeing the debates that were happening, I felt a responsibility to present myself as what Islam really is."

9. Laila, a young Muslim woman, vents her frustration at having to constantly justify her religion.

"French people say, 'Why don't you come to the street with us [to mourn], to come debate with us, to say you are with us...'" she told the couple, "But we don't have to justify or act. ... Of course we are with the French people, we are French. We don't need to say 'Hello, I'm Muslim, I'm here!'"

10. A mourner pushes a camera away.

The media attention was thick, according to the couple, but some of those paying tribute just wanted to be left alone.

11. A man recalls narrowly escaping the scene of the attacks only a few hours before they began.

According to Gielen and Wright-Mead, Theo and his girlfriend had been eating at La Belle Équipe on rue de Charonne, near Le Bataclan, on the night of the attacks.

"We were there for a late lunch ... we left at 6 or 7," he told the couple. "At 9:30, the guys arrive with Kalashnikovs and kill 19 people. ... We feel lucky right now, I think."

12. A bomb scare forced Gielen to take shelter in a building with dozens of others.

Gielen was observing the salons in the Place de la République when rumors of yet another bomb started flying.

"It felt like all 1,500-2,000 people turned and sprinted at us, yelling, 'Bomb! Bomb! Bomb!'" Gielen said. "So the people I was interviewing, myself, we just turned and ran."

The threat later turned out to be a false alarm.

13. A family looking for their daughter after the false alarm.

"Caroline? Caroline?" Gielen recalls hearing them say.

14. Back in the Place de la République, 15 minutes after the bomb scare.

According the couple, the discussions, arguments, and conversations continued as if nothing had happened.

"Nobody's hiding," Wright-Mead said.

15. A young man defies the police in order to hang a French flag on the monument in the Place.

"The crowd chanted 'Bravo! Bravo!' and applauded him. When he came down he was hugged by strangers until the police reached him," the couple wrote on Facebook.

16. Police confronting the young man — as the crowd protests.

"Seeing he was a French student, [they] gave him a polite but firm 'no more climbing' and let him go," Gielen wrote. "The crowd, who showed restraint in equal measure to the police, chanted 'Merci! Merci! Bravo!' applauding the police discretion and parted to let them return to their posts around the Place. It was an extraordinary display of community and communication."

17. A young woman in a cafe, who refuses to be terrorized.

Sophie, who the couple met at Attitude Cafe, talked about resilience in the face of uncertainty.

"We are sitting here, and yes we are afraid another car can come, and kill us," she told the couple, in a conversation they recalled on Facebook.

"But come on — have guts."

True

Marine veteran Paul Coppola is a wonderful example of the transformational power of service dogs.

Ten years ago, he was rocked by two explosions in an attack that took the lives of 17 Marines in Afghanistan. The attack left Coppola with traumatic brain injury, PTSD, and an injured back.

Coppola didn't think his struggles warranted a service dog but after prodding from his wife, he was paired with Dobby, a four-year-old black Lab mix trained by veteran organization Operation Delta Dog.

Dobby and Paul soon became best friends and partners in life.

Keep Reading Show less
via © Jakub Gojda/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021 and © Zoe Ross /Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021

Two of the winners of the Comedy Pet Photo Awards.

A few weeks ago, Upworthy shared the hilarious winners of the 2021 Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards and the winner was a well-timed shot of a monkey who appears to have hurt the family jewels on a suspension wire. (Don't worry folks, no monkeys were harmed for the awards.)

The awards were created six years ago by Tom Sullam and Paul Joynson-Hicks to promote positive awareness of animal welfare issues. The competition has been so successful, the duo decided to branch out and create the Comedy Pet Photo Awards, where photographers can submit pictures of their furry friends for a £2,000 ($2650) prize.

Donations generated by the competition go to Animal Support Angels, an animal welfare charity in the U.K.

This year's winner is Zoe Ross for "Whizz Pop," a photo of her labrador puppy Pepper who appears to be tooting bubbles.

“We never ever thought that we would win but entered the competition because we loved the idea of helping a charity just by sending in a funny photo of Pepper," Ross said in a statement. "She is such a little monkey, and very proud of herself, bringing in items from the garden and parading past you until you notice her. She is the happiest puppy we’ve ever known and completely loved to pieces.”

Here are the rest of the winners of the 2021 Comedy Pet Photo Awards.

Overall Winner: Zoe Ross "Whizz Pop," Penkridge, U.K.

© Zoe Ross /Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021

Did this puppy swallow a bubble?

Best Dog Category: Carmen Cromer "Jurassic Bark," Pittsboro, North Carolina

© Carmen Cromer/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021

"My golden retriever, Clementine, loves to stick her face in front of the hose while I water the plants. Her expression in this photo made me think of a tyrannosaurus rex, hence the title, "Jurassic Bark." Duh nuh nuuuh nuhnuh, duh nuh nuuuh nuh nuh, dun duh duuuh nuh nuh nuh nUUUUUUhhhh." – Carmen Cromer

Best Cat Category: Kathrynn Trott "Photobomb," Ystradgynlais, U.K.

© Kathrynn Trott/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021

Jeff stealing the limelight from his brother Jaffa.

Best Horse Category: Mary Ellis, "I Said 'Good Morning,'" Platte River State Park, Nebraska

© Mary Ellis/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021

"I like to visit the stable horses before I begin my hike at the State Park. This is the reply I received when I said 'Good morning.'" – Mary Ellis

All Other Creatures Category: Sophie Bonnefoi, "The Eureka Moment," Oxford, U.K.

© Sophie Bonnefoi/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021

"Cutie and Speedy are two chicks hatched from eggs placed in an incubator at home in August 2020. They spent their first few weeks indoors. In the photo, they are just over two weeks old. They were curious about everything. This is the day they discovered their own shadow. It was hilarious to see them wondering and exploring that 'dark thing' that was moving with them!" – Sophie Bonnefoi

Junior Category: Suzi Lonergan, "Sit!" Pacific Palisades, California

© Suzi Lonergan/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021

"Our granddaughter gave the command to sit. Beau is very obedient." – Suzi Lonergan

Pets Who Look Like Their Owners Category: Jakub Gojda, "That Was a Good One!" Czech Republic

© Jakub Gojda/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021

"This photo was taken by accident during the photography of my ex-girlfriend with her beloved mare. For this cheerful moment, I thank the fly that sat on the horse's nose and he instinctively shook his head." – Jakub Gojda.

Highly Commended: Chloe Beck, "Hugo the Photobomber," Walsall, U.K.

© Chloe Beck/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021

"This is my best friend Faith, her husband Alex, and their cheeky Sproodle, Hugo. Faith wanted a photograph to mark a special occasion—her first outing after shielding at home for 14 months. Hugo jumped into the frame at just the right moment!" – Chloe Beck

Highly Commended: Luke O'Brien, "Mumford and Chum," Coventry, U.K.

© Luke O'Brien/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021

"Losing the opportunity to play with my human bandmates during lockdown, Flint, my rescue dog, soon taught me that we didn't just have sharp bones in common, but musical ones, too. He soon became the perfect substitute for a collaborative stomp up at home, so much so that we felt we deserved our own band name (Muttford and Chum). With my camera set up remotely during this shoot, I think it's fair to say that the image is proof that his conviction as a performer matches my own." – Luke O'Brien.

Highly Commended: Kathryn Clark, "Wine Time," Cichester, U.K.

© Kathryn Clark/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021

"It's that time of day again! Little Blue enjoys it almost as much as me." – Kathryn Clark.

Highly Commended: Diana Jill Mehner, "Crazy in Love With Fall," Paderborn, Germany

© Diana Jill Mehner/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021

"This is Leia. As you can see, she definitely loves playing with all the leaves in autumn. It was really tricky to take this picture because you never know what the dog is going to do next." – Diana Jill Mehner.

Highly Commended: Christine Johnson, "Boing," Crosby Beach, U.K.

© Christine Johnson/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021

"I was busy playing with my dog on the beach and this dog came to play. I liked the shapes he was making in the air." – Christine Johnson

Highly Commended: Manel Subirats Ferrer, "Ostrich Style," Platja del Prat de Llobregat, Spain

© Manel Subirats Ferrer/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021

Nuka playing hide and seek at the beach.

Highly Commended: Colin Doyle, "Nosey Neighbor," Bromsgrove, U.K.

© Colin Doyle/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021

"According to Ozzy, we need a new fence panel ASAP. He is fed up with Chester our nosy next door neighbor spying on him every time he has a meal." – Colin Doyle.

Highly Commended: Corey Seeman, "A Warm Spot on a Cold Day," Michigan

© Corey Seeman/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021

"Two of the morning regulars at the dog park are Gary (hound mix with the jacket) and Kona, one of the most chill dogs ever." – Corey Seeman.

Highly Commended: Lucy Slater, "So What?" San Diego, California

© Lucy Slater/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021

"This is how I like to sit!" – Vincent the cat

Highly Commended: Mollie Cheary, "Photobomb," Poole, U.K.

© Mollie Cheary/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021

"Bailey was so excited to see her friends, she couldn't sit still for a photo!" – Mollie Cheary

Peet Montzingo following his mom around with a trombone is delightful family entertainment.

Peet Montzingo and his mom have the most delightful relationship, as evidenced by their joint videos on Montzingo's social media platforms. And one viral video sums up the sort of fun Montzingo and his unique family engage in.

The video is a compilation of clips of Montzingo following his mom around with a trombone, making silly sound effects as she goes about doing chores and normal daily life things. It's simple and silly, which is what makes it so wholesome. People can't get enough of their gentle bantering.

Watch:

Keep Reading Show less

Dolly Parton was the picture of grace in her 1977 interview with Barbara Walters.

Dolly Parton is a beloved icon whose appeal somehow bridges a diverse audience. Even people who aren't big fans of her music admire her for her kindness, philanthropy and unflappability.

Barbara Walters is a now-retired broadcast journalist who gained international fame for her candid interviews with well-known figures. Though she was renowned for her interview techniques and willingness to ask tough questions, sometimes her questions could be somewhat tactless.

Put those two together 44 years ago and you get a shining example of Parton's grace and wit in the face of tasteless questions about her looks, her breasts and criticisms lobbed at her. Parton has always been who she is and portrayed the outward appearances she wants to portray, and she calmly and deftly navigates Walters' patronizing line of questioning with impressive poise.

Watch:

So much of Barbara Walters' commentary and questioning comes across as condescending and judgmental, but Dolly Parton transforms that negativity into a positive portrayal of who she is, where she's from and what she's all about.

When Walters told her she was beautiful and didn't need the wig and the make-up and the outrageous clothes, Parton told her it was a choice she's making. “I don’t like to be like everybody else," she said. “I would never stoop so low to be fashionable, that’s the easiest thing in the world to do.

"I'm very real as far as my outlook on life and the way I care about people and the way I care about myself and the things I care about. I just chose to do this, and show business is a money-making joke and I've just always liked telling jokes," she added.

Walters asked her if she ever feels that she is a joke, since people make fun of her.

“Oh I know they make fun of me, but all these years the people have thought the joke was on me, but it’s actually on them,” said Parton. “I am sure of myself as a person. I am sure of my talent. I’m sure of my love for life and that sort of thing. I am very content, I like the kind of person that I am. So, I can afford to piddle around and do-diddle around with makeup and clothes and stuff because I am secure with myself.”

The questions about Parton's breasts were particularly tacky, especially by today's standards. But Parton handled it all beautifully. Her responses are a masterclass in grace and her self-assurance is a refreshing model for us all—especially now that we can see how she has stayed true to herself all these years. Anyone who has ever wondered why Dolly Parton's appearance is what it is will learn a lot from this interview, and anyone who wants to learn how to maintain dignity and class in the face of inconsideration will learn a lot as well.