One thing about loving the medieval period is that you get period appropriate music stick in your head. A favorite madrigal of mine is “Fine knacks for ladies” which is basically about a pedlar admitting he sells junk. “Though all my wares be trash, the heart is true.” I think if I’d been in the City of Carcassonne six hundred years ago, it would be just as crowded and commercial. (And much smellier!)
I suppose a big difference is that not a single store there was selling relics! No finger bones of saints to be found anywhere!!
I admire of the French that this great medieval fortress, dating back to the Roman era, is still lived in. There are houses there, and homes. It’s a part of the city, not apart from the city. I don’t think we Americans would do that, perhaps because our history is more rare. I think it’s a good way of preserving it though. People tend to take care of where they live.