Sometimes it rains in Paris
when you are wearing flats…
and then, you step in a puddle.
and you get lost because you always get lost in Paris and that, my friends, is part of the allure.
Sometimes, you cry in Paris because you just want someone else to show you the way home and make you a cup of tea but everyone is looking to you for directions, language, and guidance.
Do you ever notice how no one ever says anything bad about Paris, except maybe that the people aren’t very friendly – which isn’t true at all (in fact they are some of the friendliest people I’ve met…besides Canadians of course).
I planned a trip to Paris in April because I thought it would be too cold in February. Paris-1 Krista-0
We haven’t had a warm sunny day yet and probably won’t have one before we leave which means that if Paris isn’t going to change, I need to….it also means I need to subsidize my wardrobe
But today, I am going to huddle inside with my music, lemon tea, dark chocolate, new cardigan and tell you about our time in Paris so far.
We arrived on Friday afternoon at a quaint little flat, six floors up in the 2nd Arrondissement.
The stairs, however, are fully compensated for by the charming wood beams, petit chandeliers and perfect location….and eating un pain au chocolat each morning.
After catching our breath and marvelling at the idea that WE WERE IN PARIS! we headed out to explore the neighbourhood. The flat is just a few blocks from a pedestrian only street called Rue de Montorgueil, home to a variety of patisseries, boulangeries, fromageries, poisonneries and produce stands. It is within walking distance to Notre Dame, The Louvre, Opera and much more…but let’s face it, most of Paris is in walking distance.
Speech came slow but it did come and it didn’t take long before I felt comfortable enough with my grade 12 French to purchase whatever my appetite desired. This of course, was some Italian meats, French cheese, un baguette and a bottle of Bordeaux.
After the kids were in bed I was eager to greet the Paris night, so leaving the kids with Grandma and Papa, my brother, Ben and I headed to Sacré Coeur for a magical night view of the city.
As we climbed the street leading up to the Sacré Coeur we were surrounded by souvenir shops and vendors with tiny metal Eiffel Towers figurines. We passed the tricksters my brother’s friend had warned us about at the bottom of the steps (they tie a string around your finger and afterwards demand payment) and a man playing his saxophone for the many tourists in hopes to woo them and their Asian money. As we climbed the murmur grew and we ascended 200 metres above sea level, into the crowds of people gathered on the steps of the Basilica: many local, many not, visiting, indulging, resting. Outside of this historical place of worship, commerce and corruption and the irony only deepened inside as the Sisters sang their evensong of peace and reverence amongst the worshippers, the spectators and the ignorant.
Paris: a diverse intersection of the traditional and modern, sacred and profane, the rich and poor.
To be continued….