I started to share Skips journal on November 25, and then December 3rd. Today, our their journey, it is their second day in Paris.  Thanks to all of you who have commented on the first two posts, retweeted, and sent me emails.

Tuesday in Paris

It’s overcast and a tad chilly here in the 13th Arrondisement.  An extended breakfast of croissants, a baguette, fresh fruit and several cups of coffee on our balcony was the most civilized way we could imagine starting the French portion of our visit. We even caught a glimpse of the wino who was serenading anyone who would listen from his perch outside the Monoprix on the first floor of our building (we are on the 8th floor). It doesn’t get better than this.

Earlier, Chris slept in while Fran and I headed out to find fresh baked goods.  Our host had told us the best bakery (patisserie) was the middle one among three across the street. That didn’t work because one was being reconstructed and the other two were sold out.  We had opted to purchase our baked goods for the morning to ensure freshness so back to the MonoPrix we went.  We watched the baguettes come out of the oven and even the croissantswere still warm. Yum!

After a leisurely breakfast/brunch, off we went to explore things nearby. My plans to draw fresh Euros from one of the local bank ATMs went nowhere fast when I discovered the ATM key pads contained only numbers, not the mix of letters and numbers found on most ATMs at home. My pin number was a combination of letters and numbers so I was unable to complete my transaction and spent the next hour or two checking out various ATM key pads along Avenue d’Italie. Anyone watching me would have guessed I was a scammer trying to rob the silly machines.  I finally found a friendly ATM (with letters and numbers) but it would only issue me half of what I requested (daily bank cash limits were different than at home).

In the meantime, Fran had discovered a decorator’s mother lode in Maisons du Monde; a cross between Conrans (London), Crate and Barrel and Ikea for things around the home. Who needs an ATM when Maisons du Monde takes Master Card? We had to take our bags back to the apartment before continuing on our daily quest.  We cruised our way up and down the boulevard and nibbled and sipped things at various sidewalk venues until we figured it was nap time and crashed back at the apartment.

Dinner was another matter and I think I could probably develop a taste for this lifestyle rather quickly.  Chris whipped up a plate of smoked salmon and baguette slices while Fran is in the kitchen plating a dinner of mystery crepes, ratatouille and whipped potatoes. I’m sitting on the balcony sipping a nice glass of chilled bubbly our host had left in the fridge. Decadent?  Absolutely!

A nice Cote du Rhone made a wonderful pairing once the Champagne was gone.  Tough life.

Once dinner ended, we figured out (thanks to an autopsy conducted by Chris) that our mystery crepe was a scrumptious combination of mixed vegetables blended in a St Jacques cream sauce.  Fran outdid herself.

A serenade by the wino down on the sidewalk eight stories below topped off the evening.

Wednesday will bring further new ventures.

Skip Mays

I hope you enjoy these posts. Since Fran and Skip are long time friends, it was wonderful to connect in Paris.