A Bientot Paris

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This morning as I biked (via the convenient city-wide program) to my last French class I knew, without a doubt, that I must return to Paris.

There’s so much culture and language to learn and neighborhoods to explore. A month was simply a start.

Tomorrow we fly to London for the last month of this trip. Hard to believe and I know time will only go faster.

Tonight though, with the bittersweet sentiments each move brings, I’m focused on the knowledge that I’ll return soon.

Exploring Paris

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I’m here! I’m still in France!

We’re in Paris for the month and I’m already certain it won’t nearly be long enough. While I’ve seen nearly all of the “must-see” tourist attractions, I really must pick up my culinary pursuits. From here on out I’m on a mission to taste this marvelous city’s best pastry. Although I may be slightly limited as a good lot of businesses are taking their annual August vacances.

Rest assured though, I have found the most marvelous gelato care of Pozzetto More updates shortly!

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Cafe Gourmand in Paris

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Is it any surprise that there were lots of highlights in Paris? Five nights in this magical city gave me just enough of a taste to get really excited for the month of August which I’ll spend there.

As mentioned in an earlier post, I’m quite enamored with the cafe gourmand concept which originated in Paris. When I passed by the endearing Coquelicot bakery I knew I had to try their version. Opting for cafe gourmand meant I could forgo the difficult task of making a selection from their extensive and extremely appealing pastry selection.

While I must admit I’m still not a fan of macarons, I was happy to see their brownie included and the lemon tart was one of the very few citrus desserts I’ve ever liked! Their rhubarb tart also got a rave review from my sister. I can’t wait to return for their famous brunch!

Loose ends

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Two weeks to go…..&, while I’m very excited, there are many details to tend to that can create a minor (or major) sense of panic. Yes, I realize that fretting about how one will spend 6 months in France & the UK somewhat affordably is a privileged position to be in. However, my elders point out that it’s all relative so, with that in mind, I tend to the issues at hand.

As I alluded to in my earlier post, I prefer things a touch more planned than they currently are. So many aspects can’t be arranged until we’re there so I’m trying to roll with it.

The budget is a major concern – Ryan won’t be paid at his ‘stages’ and I don’t currently have anything lined up although hope to pick things up along the way. It may be unavoidable but I figure this trip is a good reason to go into a bit of debt.

Amazingly, we already have a few social engagements for during our trip including with the creator of Flavors of Paris (www.flavorsofparis.com) & a fellow Stratford resident, one of those “it’s a small world” situations. Already I’m looking forward to seeing friendly faces as I embark on this adventure.

Where Things Are At

First of all, let me thank you for reading. I suppose there was some fear when I hit “Post” that I’d receive less than enthusiastic comments or, even, none at all. Now the pressure may be what to write for my 2nd, 3rd, & so on posts. Let’s start with a few more details about this trip I mentioned, which really, is all I have.

Perhaps most importantly, the flight is booked! Flying out of Toronto on April 9th to arrive in Paris the next day. My mother was quite relieved to hear there’s also a return ticket – currently October 2nd. That’s six months. That’s a while!

There’s also my travel companion. My partner, Ryan, is a chef & will be “staging” at a few restaurants to expand his culinary repertoire. What I’ll be up to remains to be seen. But I’m attempting to remain open minded to whatever may present itself.

We’ve planned on two nights in Paris once we land (via AirBnB.com) & then will make our way south to a house sitting I’ve arranged in Azille for just over a week. We connected with a lovely couple via TrustedHousesitters.com. For a small registration fee, & after completing your own profile, you’re granted access to postings from home owners from around the world looking for someone to care for their home &/or pets.

From there we’ll spend three months in Menton. Known as “the Pearl of France,” it’s in southern France on the border of Italy. With hopefully lots of short trips to the surrounding areas the plan is to then be in Paris for August & London for September. Of course this still may change but, so far, I’ve no complaints!

Food of France