Category Archives: Paris

Parisian Pastries: Look, but Don’t Touch…OR Eat

angelinas2 Specially crafted and uniquely designed edible dishes are so visually appealing to me. They cause me to stop in my tracks, admire the skill it took create them and even feel a little giddy on the inside. :) You can catch me oohing and aahing at the creations followed by silent staring, similar to a child seriously viewing a cartoon show. It would be great if my admiration of these delicacies stopped there, but it doesn’t. Pleasing to the eye and probably just as pleasing to the palate, I just can’t bring myself to consume one, not even a nibble.  I feel that they must be preserved and it would be a waste for me to eat something so beautiful.  Most of my friends shake their heads at me, especially when I try to convince them NOT to eat them, too, lol.

blog2I have noticed that people tend to throw their restrictions out of the window when it comes to nom-nom-noming during vacation. What one refrains from in their home country, they are willing to try in another. Heck, diets are temporarily placed on pause, too.  When I saw these beautiful, tasty, tempting treats while strolling in Paris, I thought I was going to let all of my ‘preserve cute desserts’ inhibitions go; however, I am proud to say I kept my stance!  I ended up eating only the boring looking (albeit yummy) pastries  and I stuck to staring at and photographing the gorgeous ones.

Boring, Yummy Treats That I Ate

blog3blog1Exciting Treats I Didn’t Eat!

blogblog4

Now be honest, could YOU bring yourself to EAT one of these fine, trophy looking treats or would you preserve them for viewing pleasure only?

 

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Enjoy Sweet Parisian Sounds, Just By Walking Around!!!

Hey that rhymed!!! Elementary school paid off after all. :)

So you:

  • Received the approval from your supervisor for that week off from work
  • Decide to take a chance and visit Paris, France (oh man, I am on a roll with the rhyming today)
  • On your ‘must see’ list are the Eiffel Tower (of course), Notre Dame Cathedral,  Moulin Rouge and other attractions, plus that hot club your friends told you to visit because they have the best, live musical performances. Sounds good, right? Cool, until you remember…YOU ONLY HAVE A FRIGGIN WEEK TO DO ALL OF THIS!!!

"Image courtesy of [imagerymajestic] / FreeDigitalPhotos.net".
“Image courtesy of [imagerymajestic] / FreeDigitalPhotos.net”.
  No need for the frustration. You just might get to that local club after all, but if not,you could enjoy the sweet sounds of Paris for free on your way to the Eiffel Tower or wherever you go!!! Grab my hand and walk with me, why doncha?

 


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Le Marché and Le Marais

Translation-The Market and The Marais

Day 6 was my last FULL day in Paris. I call it a full day because I spent it shopping (window) and eating. The actual final day was reserved preparing for the dreaded 8 hour nonstop flight back to the U.S.

Les fruits et Légumes Regarder Magnifique!!!
I headed to do some mild outdoor market shopping with a few of my new family members *smile* that morning. The market just so happened to be conveniently right down the street from the apartment we were staying in. While my original intent and purpose was to shop, I spent most of that time in complete awe from seeing the beautiful selection of fruits and vegetables there!!! I couldn’t believe wasn’t plastic!


We ended our market-ing after about 2 hours and proceeded to the Marais area of Paris. Two options were given- shop or tour the Pompidou Museum. I was ‘museum-ed’ out after the Louvre earlier that week, so I went with the shopping crew. A lady can never get too shopped out, lol.

Walking around, I saw sooo much I wanted to purchase, so I went into a store and made my intentions known to the employees there. What they told me was confusing and upsetting- they would only sell to me if I was a vendor. You say what now? I just didn’t understand what was going on, but later I found out that importers provide a huge bulk of tempting merchandise (that they advertise in their windows, not cool) specifically to other vendors, but not to customers like me. Most of the stores I wanted to shop in were set up this way.  I guess the bright side of this situation was that I ended up saving money in the long run…whatever.
I got a little hungry during my forced window shopping experience and was interested in seeing what was so special about ‘Euro Fried Chicken.’

Honestly, there was nothing special about it at all, but the drink ordered, Tropico, was DELICIOUS!!!

It was there that I got a view of the most attractive man I noticed in Paris. Nothing was said between us but I made sure I caught several glimpses of Monsieur Beau before I left 😉

Where Fashion and Freakiness Connect
Picture this: You are walking in The Marais district, cautiously because you really don’t know where you’re going, but you force yourself to display a confidence like you know everything about the area. You finally see several clothing and souvenir shops that you can enter and then, you see women dressed in black, intimate apparel. You think nothing of it, because hey, Paris is a fashionable city. You notice that these women make some verbal exchanges with men and then they disappear into a building. Still not putting two and two together, you keep’a walking until the synapses in the brain start functioning and the realization kicks in that one could shop AND get sex here. Interesting combo, lol.
Prostitution is legal in Paris and being that the Marais is a high volume area due to the variety of businesses, you see plenty solicitation, albeit respectful. No one propositioned me (is there something wrong with me?) or anyone in my family, but we did encounter a situation that could’ve gone seriously wrong.  A prostitute suddenly ran down the street we were walking on and pushed us out of the way to confront a man and woman in ahead of us. I didn’t know what the argument was about, but I was thinking ‘just pay the woman already.’

How Sweet it is to be Loved by you
and even sweeter to eat you!

We stopped at a crepe stand in the Marais and unlike last time, I got one that contained more than just sugar. I got the real deal- Nutella and banana. That sucker was good!

Working on it
Still working on it

Oh and guess who I saw again? That’s right, Monsieur Beau! I asked him if he would take a picture with me and he was kind enough to do so. This turned out for my good because my claimed photographic memory is actually short lived. Looking at him this picture makes me happy, hee hee.

 


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Day 5 in Paris: Looky Louvre Part 2?

Victoire de Samothrace

Earlier during the week , my first visit to the Louvre was short because it wasn’t open, but Day 5 started off right!!! Tickets were purchased, accepted, and inside I went!

What The???What’s That Noise?
Blow horns blasting continuously. Shouts in French throughout the lobby. People gathered together in similar uniforms chanting. What was going on?

I found out (after attempting to use the restroom inside the Louvre) that the janitorial staff were on strike that day. Makes sense because my attempt to relieve myself at that time didn’t go as planned, lol!

Janitorial Staff Strike in the Louvre

After maneuvering through the commotion, I was met with more commotion- SO MANY PEOPLE in the Louvre! That didn’t stop me from taking several snaps of sculptures and paintings; however, snapping that ideal picture of The Mona Lisa was a different story though,lol.

My shot of the Mona Lisa

 

Isis
Osiris
John the Baptist, Beheaded
David and Goliath
Christ heading to be crucified
Beautiful sculpting in the ceiling corners of The Louvre

These Gym Shoes Were Made for Walking…
to the Eiffel Tower for a more up close and personal tour.

Day One View at Trocadero

 

 

Do you recall Day One in Paris?  Well, if so (or if not, click here). The ‘family’ and I visited the Trocadero Plaza, which provided a distant, yet full and scenic sight of The Eiffel Tower.

 

 

Day 5 gave me a more direct and privy view of this impressive monument. Intimidating, yes, but I stood underneath the massive tower in total amazement. Then it happened- my spastic yet observant mind drifted to adventure. Those who know me are aware that I LOVE roller coasters and definitely free falls, so there I was imagining what it would be like to bungee jump or ride it as a coaster! I am so special, lol!

Please don’t be disappointed in me, but I didn’t journey through the tower. I had to be realistic about what I was seeing and how I was feeling that day:

  • My feet were aching.
  • It was super crowded.
  • The ticket lines were long.
  • I wanted to go all the way to the tippy top of it by foot. The problem with going by foot is that you are only allowed up to a certain height and once you are there, you walk across the tower to exit.
  • Access to the tippy top of The Tower was via a lift (NO FUN!)

All was not lost, though. Check out the video I made below of the Eiffel Tower, Day 5!

FEED ME!!!

Next stop, good grub and good convo with ‘the fam’ in the Latin Quarter.

My salad
My Dinner, Vegetable Potato Au Gratin
Dessert, Chocolate Mousse

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Oh, Montmartre!

View of Paris from in Montmartre

Day 4 in Paris started off much better than Day 3. For starters, I didn’t step in any dog crap (yay!) on the sidewalk. I credit this to looking down more as I walked. Some people probably assumed I was shy by my mannerisms, but that wasn’t the case – I was on a ‘no mess’ mission, lol!

After we got off the metro, we began walking in this quaint, charming area that I now know as Montmartre. During our walk, we came to a stop to view this impressive building, Sacré Coeur. Great! Let me pull out my camera, snap a few shots, okay let me look at them to make sure they’re decent…GOOD!  I got my photo opportunity, what’s next? I thought. Then I was told next was entering this impressive building. From where I stood, the Sacré Coeur looked close by.

It was then that I re-discovered looks are so deceiving.

View from the street

 

Climbing the Stairway to Heaven

I had two options- wimp out and take the funicular up to it or put on my big girl ‘pannies’ and go up several steps to the destination.  I ain’t ‘fraid of no steps, so glutes and legs workout it was.

Come… follow me to glory…

                                     Don’t Get Banded!!!

We were warned to be on the lookout for these guys in the picture below.  They’re known to convince people to try on their bracelets.  The problem with this is once the bracelet’s on, it’s hard to take off because they wrap and tie it very tightly.  When this happens, they expect you to pay them for it. One of the ladies I was touring Montmartre with almost had this happen to her. One of the guys GRABBED her by her arm to get her to wear the bracelet!!!!

Stay away from Monsieur Bracelet Man!

 And So It Begins…

Entertainment on the Way Up Provided Much Needed Breaks!

 

 Going Up’ A Yonder

I am a little embarrassed by the picture below. While going up, up and away, I could hear the Rocky Theme Song in my sweet mind. Once I got to the top of this flight, I felt I deserved to celebrate…only the celebration was premature. The Sacré Coeur was still a good distance away from me. Bummer.


So, Sorry…I Can’t Take You In!!!
Unlike the Notre Dame, no recording or picture taking was allowed. If you really want to experience it, I’d suggest taking a trip to Paris, France. YOU CAN DO IT, BOBBY BOUCHER!!!

ArtiSista
Once our tour inside the Sacré Coeur ended, we went to the Art District of Montmartre, where you could either browse or buy various paintings. If you don’t mind being stared at by passersby, take a seat, and pose! There are several artists who can draw you as a caricature or as you are!

Honestly, I was soooo tired once we got to this area. I decided to get something to eat quickly, so I opted for a mozzarella and tomato panini and a sugar crepe. I was told to get a crepe with Nutella and bananas, but since I never had one before, I wanted to taste it without many extras. In the end…I should’ve oreded the crepe with Nutella and bananas, lol.

More Entertainment!!!

Question AND Giveaway
What type of instrument of this? The sound it created reminded me of a steel drum in the Caribbean. If you can tell me what it is, I will send you a Notre Dame Cathedral coin :)

 

 



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What the Funk? (Day 3 in Paris)

One thing I learned while legally street walking in Paris was that your shoes are not safe, even on the side walk. The start of my third day included stepping in crap. Talk about pissed. Well, not piss because that’s not what I stepped in but rather pooped. Talk about pooped-that’s better.

After removing as much of this mess (hands free, of course) from my shoe, it was on to begin another full day in Paris.

Bath and Body Works Parisian Style?

My pedestrian poop situation still had my mind battling between getting over it and getting angry about it over again that I didn’t inquire about where we were headed. All I remember is walking into this impressive building on Rue de Rivoli and thinking, I don’t need any scented body gels and lotions, so why are we in here?

Once I got closer to the items on the shelves, I noticed that the assumed body gels and lotions were actually varieties of candies, cremes, sauces, etc. It was then explained to me that we were in Angelina’s, a restaurant famous for their hot chocolate.

We were escorted to our table with a one track mind. No need for menus because our mission was ‘get the chocolate.’  It literally tasted like melted chocolate bars and was so rich and thick, I had to drink a little water after a few sips.

On the way out, I just had to snap some pictures of these pastries. Edible, yes they are, but why would you want to eat something so beautiful?

Getting it In At Chez Benjamin

We stayed on Rue de Rivoli for about 2 hours strictly shopping until our stomachs decided, ‘Enough!’ One thing about Paris is when you’re hungry, one quick look either behind, in front, to the left or right of you is somewhere to eat. We decided to dine here:

Looky Louvre?

That was the plan but for some reason, The Louvre Museum on this day was closed. Maybe it was purposed to be this way because I had time to crack the Da Vinci Code! Take that Robert Langdon (Tom Hanks)!

After code cracking, the Louvre pyramid thanked me by bestowing a rainbow on my hair.


 

 

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Paris, Day 2 : If These Dogs Could Talk

 

‘So, dogs, did you enjoy Paris?’

Dogs: ‘&*%$#*(@!!!’

Me: ‘Oh, wow…sorry I asked…’

Were you able to make that out? Well, if not my dogs are livid because they hurt SO bad walking around the city of Paris.

They are angry because I assumed the shoes I had on were supportive enough when in reality, they were not. They are also upset at my no arch having flat feet.

Sorry, dogs, but GET OVER IT!!!. You had the wonderful opportunity to connect with the concrete of Paris!

While I took public transportation in the form of subways and buses, after all of the walking I did, it sure didn’t seem like it!

Day 2- Check out the Seinery

Me in front of the Fontaine St. Michel

The Shakespeare and Company Bookstore: Originally an apartment, the owner, George Whitman, decided to transform it into a bookstore AND resting place for many of the literary geniuses we know today.

Right across from the bookstore is the Notre Dame Cathedral and the Seine River. I didn’t get the chance to sail across the river, but from what been told, this river runs through the city of Paris, highlighting its famous landmarks.

Me, some of Notre Dame and the Seine River

 

Call me weird, but I like these gargoyles on top of The Notre Dame Cathedral!

The Notre Dame Cathedral
View Inside the Cathedral
View Inside the Cathedral

What’s on The Rue?

Rue di Rivoli, that is. A woman’s dream, a tired man’s nightmare.

Wait…Are You Sure This Is McDonald’s?

I know, I know. There’s a McDonald’s everywhere so what’s the point of going to one in another country and especially in Paris, France? I will tell you why.
Simply put, we were hungry and wanted something to eat, right then, right there. Trust me when I say, ordering and eating McDonald’s in Paris was like fine dining.  You have the option of ordering at a fancy kiosk or at the register. There were items on the menu that I have never seen at McDonald’s before, but I decided to stick with what I used to eat in the States… Filet-O-Fish meal.

Tell me why that sucker was GOOD! No, not just good, but GOO-OOOD!! Just put it like this, I went back and got another one AND their potato wedges. I was mighty impressed. No acid reflux, either.

 

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