Lay of the land

I am staying at a hotel on the right bank sandwiched between the 1st and the 8th arrondissement (yellow dot on the screenshot below). There is a high concentration of top shopping temptations around me, but more importantly I am also just a stone through away from the gardens and sights, including the Eiffel Tower, which I see every time I go out for a walk. Having enjoyed this area as my home base this time, I can now recommend it as a wonderful place to stay for a first trip to Paris because major sites are all – Right. Here.

Two things are becoming apparent in all the people watching I have done – Parisians have taken on to running as a sport like no time before. There are spandex-ed runners every where at all hours of the day. Second, Parisians are passionate talkers. I knew that already but it’s taken on another degree of realization as I have spent a lot of my time in silence (and perhaps too many texts to Dev and my sister saying I wish they were here so that I could talk to them about the talkers around me).

All the merriment and excitement surrounding me is reminiscent of the Friday nights I have spent with friends in Raleigh eating pizza as our kids run around the house. I imagine if the setting was a bistro, guys, we’d all look the same as these happy strangers. Except, we have never done that on a Monday night I suppose and which these Parisians were happily doing (what about work? I kept mumbling under my breath. Followed quickly by, doesn’t that kid have school tomorrow?)

While hanging out in the Jardin des Tuileries yesterday, I couldn’t stop thinking about my kids. Note to self – if you are trying not to miss your kids, don’t go to a big garden that has lots of kids. Among other things here, there is a sail boat pond, an outdoor trampoline thingie, a carousel, and a really nice playground. A good snack or coffee is an easy reach away at one of the many outdoor cafes. And lot of green chairs to lounge on and people watch.

For my dinner, I had plans to eat somewhere on Rue Montorguiel. When trying to decide “where to eat in Paris”, I think it helps not just to have specific restaurant recommendations but also suggestions of some very lively streets with a bunch of eating options. This street is one of them. I had an outdoor table at Bianco and loved my pizza with pesto, fresh ricotta, roasted eggplants, and fried zucchini flowers, with a glass of red lambrusco.

Also, I have a coffee table book idea for anyone who might be looking to fund a new idea – A photo book full of uncleared Parisian Bistro chairs and tables after the guests have departed. What do you think?

I haven’t traveled alone like this before. It is strange to only have myself to think about. It is also really really hard not to consume a shit load of coffee and wine because really, what else is there to do? Let’s hope that I find that out on my second day. = )

Leaving you with a few pictures. If you see my kids, give them a squeeze for me please because I desperately miss them. Thanks D. Je t’aime.

I imagine none of these chairs would be empty in the high season.
Selfie # 1
Lunch as I waited for my hotel room to be ready.
A peek at the inside of the Louvre from the Le Pavillon de la Bibliotheque et la’aile nord du Louvre pictured above.
View from my dinner table “on the terrace” at Bianco on Rue Montorgueil
Selfie # 2
Seeing the dump truck make it’s way through the narrow street lined with bistros was exciting. My kids would have enjoyed the site of it barely missing someone’s knee.
Selfie # 3. I wish I was more comfortable taking selfies. *sigh*

One thought on “Lay of the land

  1. I wondered if this was your first truly solo trip. I love seeing it from your perspective because it’s how I usually travel and have my methods to cope when it gets lonely. I also spent a lot of my time solo in Paris over the summer at outdoor cafes with tea or champagne because 1. It was so HOT and 2. There wasn’t much else to do sometimes. I can’t wait to continue following along. Sending you lots of hugs.

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