Saturday, May 25, 2013

Le Samedi

My first Saturday in Paris.  Weekends in Paris have a distinctly different rhythm and I tried to remember that this morning as I fought the urge to rush around my apartment in a hurry to go nowhere.  Take it slow, breathe, enjoy the experience.

Afternoon sunshine in le Jardin des Tuileries
But first a quick bit about my first Friday evening in Paris.  I was giddy-as-a-schoolgirl excited to FINALLY meet Lindsey Kent of Pictours Paris.  Originally from Denver, Lindsey is the talented owner of Pictours Paris, a photography company that photographs clients from around the world in beautiful Paris.  Chris and I were very lucky to receive a photo shoot with her company in September but I hadn't had the opportunity to meet her in person until last night.

We met at Le Mary Celeste, a hip place in the third arrondissement.  This is my second, new arrondisement in less than a week and I was feeling pretty full of myself by the time I arrived, on time, without getting lost!  Again, describing food and restaurant ambiance escapes me so I will direct you to the experts and their February review at Paris By Mouth.  However, if this place was in Victoria there is no way I would have the nerve to go.  It's just too cool and too hipster for me to be sitting there in my GAP blazer and Old Navy ballerinas.  There was a girl sitting to the left of me whose hair was so messy it was styled.  But back to Lindsey...

With my Paris obsession, I come across a lot of people who have negative opinions about Paris.  Some of them have made a very healthy living complaining about Paris while living in Paris so it was a delight to meet someone as lovestruck by Paris as I am.  Lindsey not only enjoys every minute here, she is succeeding here.  More than once she told me that she can't believe this (Paris) is her life.  It was inspiring and energizing to spend time with her and I am grateful I got to meet her.

So what to do with a full Saturday in Paris?  Breakfast at Le Petit Cler (omelet nature) followed by slow grocery shopping on rue Cler.  By "slow", I mean that I went to four different stores to purchase my vegetables, my meat and cheese, my bread and finally my Badoit, sugar and cleaning supplies.  Because all of these lovely little shops are within a 2 minute walk from each other, it's very easy and quick to shop this way.  In Victoria we too have an excellent selection of local and/or organic produce but these shops are spread throughout the city so driving is a necessity and this great food isn't accessible to everyone.

Walking back to Rue Cler on Rue Saint Dominique and one of the peekaboo views of the Eiffel Tower.

My other main Saturday plan was to buy a sweater.  Frozen cold yesterday, I stood outside Eric Bompard Cashmere on Rue Bac and salivated over a 300 euros cashmere sweater.  Thank goodness I couldn't bring myself to cross their cozy threshold in my soaking wet Converse.  Today I went to one of my Paris favourites, Bruce Field, and bought a lovely cashmere blend cardigan for 49 euros.

And then I walked and walked.  And then I came home and wrote what I think is good first draft of my book outline.  And for the first time I can honestly write that I feel optimistic about my Paris book!

Best Paris dog sighting in the last 24 hours...

The bar at Le Mary Celeste was dun coloured and so was the miniature Greyhound that was sitting on his Madame's lap.  He was almost entirely camouflaged except his muzzle was white with age and it caught the light when his head moved to sneak something delicious from Madame's hand.

Paris customer service award...

I browsed the shoe department at Printemps earlier today with absolutely no intention of buying.  It's just fantastic to look - a different kind of art gallery.  I stopped at Jonak and admired a pair of short boots.  The sales associate immediately appeared to ask if I wanted to try them on.

"Just looking. I am here for 8 weeks.  Will your fall shoes arrive in July?"

"Of course.  By the end of the first week.  But first the sales.  They start on 26th June.  Don't come that day - too busy.  It's a Wednesday.  Come on the 27th or 28th."

"Thank you so much. I will.  I just feel like I need boots this week.  It's so cold and wet."

"Did you read?  There is a story in Le Figaro yesterday that it was the coldest 24th May in 140 years! Wait I will get for you."

He whipped out his IPhone and downloaded the story for me to read.  I then told him I was attending the French Open on Monday and he downloaded the weather forecast to assure me it would be warm and sunny.

And I was just browsing.  I bought nothing. 

Saturday afternoon view looking back to Place de la Concorde from the Left Bank. The tips of Sacre Coeur in the background is one of my favourite "hidden views" of Paris.


1 comment:

After Fifty / Sylvia said...

What a lovely way to spend your first samedi in Paris, just taking it easy and being there like a local!

That's what I want to experience one day, no more going to Paris as a tourist, I want to do the real thing.

Continue to enjoy your stay and keep telling us about it. I feel like I'm there.

Ah, and how great that you can meet some expats, that's a good idea so you don't get lonely.

Have fun!