|Behind Notre Dame, 2016.|
|From our favorite, the Musée du Cluny, our most recent visit.|
We mostly ate meals in student restaurants because Len had been enrolled in the University of Grenoble, and we had special cards that entitled us to this privilege. But we had received a wedding gift of a 100 franc note, which we used for one real high-end meal at a serious restaurant. I wish I recalled what we ate, but all I remember was that it was amazingly delicious, and we were surprised that the waiters and so on treated us as honored guests, not as the poorly dressed student wanderers that we were.
In 1976, we spent most of a year in Paris, living in a very small apartment on Boulevard de Grenelle. Our balcony looked out at the elevated metro train -- noisy! especially when a terrible heat wave hit the city in late May. The famous Poilâne bakery was across the street.
We ate Poilâne's bread often, as well as the fantastic croissants, apple turnovers, rolls, and other Poilâne products that can be seen in the photo. Len is trying to recapture some of that taste with his current baking adventures.
Under the elevated tracks facing our building, city workers constructed the temporary stalls for an open-air market on Sunday and another day, maybe Tuesday: a good place to buy produce to prepare in our tiny kitchen. Right around the corner from us was a wonderful shopping street: Rue de Lourmel. I remember specialists in fresh fish who would tell me how to cook what I bought, specialists in exotic fruit and vegetables, and especially an amazing cheese shop called Cantin. This original Cantin shop doesn't seem to be on Rue de Lourmel any more, though there's another Cantin owned by the daughter of the original owner.
|The memorial at the Vélodrome d'Hiver (Wikipedia).|
|Place Dauphine in 1615. A very historic location! (Wikipedia).|
On both long trips and many short ones, I searched for hours in a quest to collect Mona Lisa parodies, which I've posted on this and other blogs many times. I looked in antique shops, bouquinistes (that is, those book stalls along the Seine), specialists in old paper, and modern card shops. Sometimes I found a few wonderful items, sometimes not. But it's always good to have an obscure goal that takes one out of the tourist routine!
Another friend that year introduced me to a book titled Paris pas Cher, which explained how to find bargains. She was especially fond of one recommended store that had mid-level designer clothing and other not-quite-high-end clothing in rejected lots from the manufacturers -- who still made clothing in Paris then. Dresses, blouses, and kids' clothing, particularly by design house Cacharel, were often sold with the center of the label cut out (or in French, dégriffé) so that a person who knew labels could recognize it, but so it was clearly designated second-quality. We found quite a few nice things shopping there. (The edition that I still have is from the next long stay in Paris, as shown.)
|Paris, Len's campus workplace at Place Jussieu (Wikipedia).|
I'm sure I've written down some of these thoughts before, though not recently. Paris in July is a great idea!