4.05.2013

Photo a Day Overseas Adventure: April 4 & 5

(Vintage store by the kilo; lunch at Fish la Boissonnerie; coming out of The Louvre and its glass pyramids)

Hello again from Paris! Can't believe that tomorrow is already our last full day here. I feel like we're just getting to know this beautiful city, and I'm finally speaking my bonjours, bonsoirs and mercis a little less timidly. :)

Yesterday and today have been pretty busy days. Thursday started out with lunch at Fish la Boissonnerie, where I ordered a delicious homemade pita with hummus, shredded apple, beans, some veggies and a beet-root ketchup that was really stunning. The hubs, who loves all kinds of seafood, went with the octopus over black rice in a red-wine reduction, and stated it was his favorite thing he's eaten so far on the trip. Tantalizing tentacles, you say? Hmmm...I don't think so.

Oh, but on the way to lunch, we just happened to get off the Metro by a vintage store, where you pay by the kilo! It was like the perfect marriage of Goodwill Outlets and your favorite vintage shop. Needless to say I dove right in and, overall, things there seemed to run more toward the '80s and '90s, but came out with four dresses that I can't wait to share pictures of when I get back. And they even had one section where all the clothing that had polka dots was set aside. For me, that was pure heaven.

But back to after lunch...once we had our fill, we went to The Louvre, which was absolute madness! I never thought it would be that busy on a Thursday during the day, but it was...and to the point of not really being able to enjoy our time there as much as I think we would have otherwise. We did see some beautiful Renaissance art, including the Venus de Milo and the Winged Victory of Samothrace, which was my favorite. Such beautiful lines and evoking such power!

(String ensemble playing in the subway; dessert at Ciel de Paris; our view during dinner)

After that we went back to the hotel to rest, and in between lines we stopped and listened to a 12-piece string ensemble that was playing in the passageway. How often do you see that? And they were really good, too. Although, I think I still love best the guy who hopped on one of our trains playing classic French tunes on the accordion. Cheesy, yes, but it was like having a soundtrack on this Parisian adventure!

Dinner last night was at Ciel de Paris, on the 56th floor of a business building. Our reservation was for 10 p.m. (I actually kind of love eating dinner that late...), and we were seated at one of the tables at the window, which also happened to be right in front of the Eiffel Tower. One of the few times I think the ambiance outweighed the food (at least for me), especially since the tower sparkled for five minutes every hour. And the dessert...oh my! I don't know what I ordered, but I saw chocolate on there a couple times in the description, so I knew that was the one for me. When it came, it was like a little work of art: a molded chocolate sphere that you cracked open to find pieces of pear drowning in a sea of rich chocolate mousse. And the sphere was served on a little round of cake. Needless to say, there was nothing left of that dish by the time we left. :)

(Banana-Nutella crepe at Creperie Josselin; sculpture at Rodin Garden; Musee d'Orsay; Notre Dame)

Okay, I know I've been rambling for a while now...so I'll make today's journey short and sweet: best crepes ever at Creperie Josselin (and can I say how much I love that in Paris you have dessert with lunch, too, not just dinner?); a wonderful walk through the Musee Rodin garden, where we saw The Thinker and many other beautiful sculptures; lots and lots of Van Gogh, Monet, Manet, Renoir and more impressionists and post-impressionists at the Musee d'Orsay (which used to be a train station, and now you can walk up to the old clock faces and look through them and see the city); and then a visit to Notre Dame, which is celebrating its 850th year! It was so very beautiful, and while we were in there the choir was practicing, which made it really ethereal and wonderful. For dinner, we just got back from Tricotin, named one of the best Chinese restaurants in town; and it was very, very good (and also crammed with locals, which I feel is always a good sign!).

Tomorrow we have a trip planned to Montmarte; an outdoor food market for bread, cheese and fruit; some shopping for sweets; more vintage store adventures; and hopefully some live jazz and drinks. So excited!

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