à Paris /ah, Paris
After just two days in Hungary, we left for Paris par avion. The avion in this case was Jet Blue, and it was, as they say in the vernacular, a trip quick.
Since we traveled intra-Europe, we carried somewhat small luggage, something we were thankful for when we arrived at the apartment on Ile Saint Louis and had to carry them up the 60 winding, wooden stairs. (Yes, we counted. Many times.)
The apartment itself had three levels and an additional 20 steps. On the first floor of the flat, we had rooms for living, dining, and kitchening; on the second, we had two bedrooms and a bath; and on le tippy-top, another bedroom and bath. After we unpacked, we opened the windows, brazenly stared into the neighbor’s apartments across from us, wished we had cigarettes to casually flick as we pouted and looked insouciant, watched the people on the street below, and planned our first excursion: grocery shopping.
After a fabulous lunch at Les Fous de L’Ile restaurant, we went to the nearest shop for ice cream. Not just any ice cream, but Berthillon ice cream, the crème de la crème of ice. Every day, crowds of people line up at the Berthillon shop on the Ile Saint Louis for its ice cream and sorbet. Each scoop is made of only natural ingredients; the flavors vary with the season. Thankfully other shops sell it, too; otherwise, we would still be waiting to get to the counter. In order to please the locals and try to fit in, we ate some every day. (Word to the wise: fitting in with the locals and fitting into your clothes may at some point cause conflicts.)
In penance for eating not one but two scoops of Berthillon, we walked to the Louvre, a little over two miles away. At a decent clip, that would take about 40 minutes, but we were indecent, stopped every few minutes to take pictures, AND had a five-year-old with us who noticed every cat, dog, (Look grandma! A French poodle! Oh! A pet shop!), bug, and bird (Grandma! Pigeons! Pigeons! PIGEONS!)
At one point on the walk, my daughter grasped my arm and yelled, “Mom!” I couldn’t distinguish the main emotion in her voice – pain, astonishment, fear, indigestion– and panicked, thinking she had hurt herself, twisted her ankle, contracted rabies, or maybe had a root canal without anesthetic while I was taking pictures or admiring my five hundredth pigeon with the grandchild. “There,” my daughter pointed, trying to catch her breath, “there is the Eiffel Tower!” And sure enough, like a small keychain ornament, there it stood. (As you can see, both my daughter and grandchild use a lot of admiration marks. For the sake of my more delicate readers, I have omitted some of them. (You’re welcome. (However, I am now bracketed in by all of these parenthesis and need to break out. (They make me claustrophobic.) (Help!))))
We couldn’t stay long at the Louvre; it was late, so we headed back to the apartment to eat and put the little one to bed. We ate a light dinner of Caprese salad, croissants, various French breads smeared with real butter, some fruit, some chocolate, and French wine until there was nothing light about the dinner or ourselves.
As is my wont on vacations, I collapsed into bed, this time in my purple velvet head-boarded bed to dream of the next day’s adventures.
Next installment: Paris grows on me (Curses on you, Berthillon!)
41 thoughts on “Are we in Paris yet? Whee!”
What a wonderful apartment–even more wonderful that it is in Paris.
It was wonderful – a gift from my brother.
Would your brother like another sister?
You’ll have to take a number. Someone will be with you shortly.
Just yesterday I used “as is my wont” and was mercilessly mocked. So thank you, thank you, for some vindication – although I guess I just need to learn to not say things like that in Montana. Love, love your writing.
Fie on those merciless Montana mockers. I hope you continue to to use the phrase. And I’m so glad you have enjoyed the blog. Thank you for reading.
Oh I”m lovin’ your trip! I feel like I”m eating everything that you eat and seeing all that you saw!! thanks so much for this wonderful post!!!
Thanks, Natalie. Even though I told myself I would take pictures of all the meals, I didn’t. But I’m definitely getting better. I use to just carry my camera around; now I actually take a picture now and then.
Paris is one of the few places I’ve been that was better and more exciting than I expected and given that it was good old gay Paree, I was expecting a lot the first time I visited and it didn’t disappoint! Sounds like it didn’t disappoint you guys either. One time my sister and I stayed in a hotel room in quite a posh area that had a gazillion stairs and the door to the ensuite bathroom was actually a shower door instead of a room-type door. And it was still a cool place! (Though our standards are low I think they pull it off because they know they’re so cool)
Paris is a fascinating city, and even though this was my second visit, I would gladly visit it again if I could.
YS, I am really enjoying your trip recap. The photographs are exquisite, again, and I want to *live* in that apartment your brother made available to your family. WHOA. More, please!
You know how when you read a book and live someone else’s life vicariously – that’s how the trip was, as if I were living someone else’s life for a while. So much fun.
I know that feeling exactly! When I do travel, I try to remind myself to be there, completely. Inevitably, afterwards, it still has a dream-like quality. And you’ve travelled and lived other places quite a bit, right? That’s really interesting, YS!
the vacation is beginning to sound like the real thing. How beautiful. The pictures too.
It was truly a vacation – travel to beautiful places with people you love.
Great photos. I can’t afford to read about ice cream. I have some in the freezer that is calling loudly.
Myrah, there is only one way to silence that ice cream. 🙂
Glad you liked the photos.
That apartment looks like a vacation in and of itself. My sister and niece, my daughter, daughter-in-law and I have been almost jokingly planning a trip to Paris for next year. I seriously want to know more about this apartment, and can’t wait for more of your photos. What a dream to vacation in Paris like this! I am vacationing vicariously….
When you consider the cost of staying in hotels, it’s really not a bad idea to consider renting a flat, especially if everyone goes in on the cost. We usually only ate out once a day, so we saved a lot of money that way. (If you want the information, I can send it.)
Oh a perfect place to stay in such a wonderful city. It sounds like you are having the most perfect trip. I wish I were with you!
The last time we went to Paris, my brother put me up in a hotel room. I much preferred the flat. It’s really seems like a good way to go if you are planning to spend some time in a city.
Did the purple velvet encourage vivid yet restful dreams? How is Choco-chan coping? Has CC met any autre ours de Paris?
I only remember a few dreams during my trip and almost all of them were about aliens and other planets. Weird.
Choco-chan enjoyed the trip but didn’t meet any other bears. Since he’s been back, the other stuffed animals, however, have been resentful. It’s sad.
Wow – that’s a spacious Parisian apartment in a very central location. I am looking forward to reading the next installment.
It was a lovely apartment; the whole trip was such a gift.
I can’t wait to hear more about your trip!!!
Thanks for reading, Worrywart.
I love the apartment, too! I’m having fun on your adventure and can’t wait for the next installment.
It would be a great place to live long-term if you didn’t mind all the stairs. When we were there, I looked at the stairs as my daily workout.
Ohhh nooo! It’s the attack of the killer pyramids! Somebody tell the Louvre, quick! I love your daughter’s funny photo. Seriously though, it looks like a delightful trip and thanks so much for sharing it with all of us.
It was surprising the number of people who wanted just such a picture. I didn’t get the point. 🙂
Thanks for reading.
Was it a French French Poodle, or merely some other breed of Poodle that happened to be French by birth?
They were French, very classy dogs, in fact, what I would call Haute Dogs.
I don’t mean to be a doubting queen, but are you sure you didn’t upload a stray photo or two from, say, L’arkitectsher day Paree? Quite the digs! And those ceiling beams!!
I could have never dreamed up such digs. It was truly a gift.
I can see why that is your favorite spot! this is delightful! 😀
It was truly full of delight.
Truly a dream. A beautiful flat, fabulous food, scintillating city-going. I would be terribly envious if it weren’t that you take us along so wonderfully, always. Thanks!
It was an unforgettable part of the trip. It’s hard not to fall in love with Paris.
This apartment was sooo beautiful compared to the wee place where my children and I bunked in Paris! Now, am I to understand that your recent Ireland posts are from the same vacation or are you away again? I need to go back and track your comings and goings…lol. Such beautiful photographs and a wonderful narrative, as per usual. Love, love, love travel, don’t you? Whoot! Whoot!
The posts from Ireland are all part of the 3 week trip.
I do love traveling and never thought I would have these opportunities. Life is full of surprises.