The very best thing about this weekend is that it was not the first and nor will it be the last I ever have in Paris. No pressure, no rush, no plan. Just a normal weekend at home and a walk around the city.
Having been to Paris twice before, I’ve done many of the big MUST DOs. Eiffel Tower, Musée du Louvre, Notre Dame… I’ve seen and been inside them all, and felt the crush of tourists. Wandering around this weekend, we got to walk without any agenda and without feeling like we were wasting time or missing anything important. I live here – what’s the rush?
Friday night our big plan was just to go out for dinner. After a week as hectic as ours was, trying to move and freezing our butts off and me working already, we were looking forward to an evening to ourselves.
We googled a couple of dinner options more or less in the area, and set out. Not one but both restaurants turned out to be complet – no reservation? no space. A couple other places we saw in the area were just the same. Fortunately, across the street was a place we had liked the look of in passing the night before, and they had plenty of tables. It was Italian food, but hey, I’ve been eating French food all week! We had a nice dinner then walked a bit and called it a night.
Saturday, Frenchman ran across the street and picked up some treats at the boulangerie for a breakfast of fresh croissants, pain au chocolat, and pain au raisin. Not exactly health food, but exactly why I’m here. It was going to be a bit rainy, so we decided to explore les passages – covered alleys with shops and cafes full of books, antiques, housewares, and touristy stuff. From there we spilled out into the Palais Royal where we sat in the garden for about a minute and a half before it really started raining on us.
We headed home for dinner, after which we were supposed to meet up with a friend of Frenchman’s who, incidentally, is about to move to Boston. That plan fell through, and since we were all dressed up with nowhere to go, we went out on our own to find a quiet place for a drink. We stumbled on a little cafe and settled in for a glass of vin chaud, which totally hit the spot after a damp, chilly day. I resisted posting a photo of the Tour Eiffel a 3rd night in a row…
In his 18 months in Boston, Frenchman became 100% obsessed with brunch. Not that I blame him – brunch is the best meal. Turns out, though, good brunch is hard to come by in Paris. There’s even a website “oubruncher.com” (where to brunch) but it’s hard to decipher and the menus are all sort of odd. All Frenchman wanted on Sunday was pancakes and eggs. We picked a place that was well-reviewed for brunch, and wound up sorely disappointed. Dommage.
After that we walked around Paris for about 6 hours, from down in the 15th up to the Seine along the river and into the Marais and all the way back. It was a long, long day and we were both super tired of walking by the end of it so we came home, had some dinner, and relaxed on the couch. Because there’s no rush when you live in Paris.