Travel: Part One

Recently it seems like when we do blog, all we blog about is travel, because recently all we do is travel.  C’est la vie.

I love Paris in the fall.

What is about Paris that has such a stronghold on my imagination in a way (okay, maybe The City) that few other cities have?  Over the past 10 years I’ve been fortunate enough to steal a day or a night, a weekend or two here and there in Paris, and even though I’m usually bleary-eyed as I troop through the Trocadero or half-groggy as I stroll along the Seine, it feeds my spirit, my soul, indeed my imagination, in a unique way.

Yes, the Brasserie Lipp is one of Hemingway's bars.

Maybe I’ve read A Moveable Feast one too many times, or engorged myself on the charming tales of George Plimpton (as my mother pointed out the other day, those tales of expatriate life in Paris always seemed to end with the same wire:  “Send money.”), but who wouldn’t want to run off to Paris to work and love and live, when life becomes too…  drab, banal, mundane (Why use one word when you can use three?) here in the States.

I’m luck enough to have family in France, to have a bit of the French blood swirling amongst my Euro-mongrel pedigree, and with that I’ve inherited the deep appreciation of fine fromage and charcuterie, of French cuisine and good wines.  (If I ever did live in Paris, I would never even attempt to see what I tip the scales at.)  So when I have a dear friend, my cousin Pierre, to stay with and eat with, well–  sometimes you just gotta steal a day or two in Paris.  (Thanks to my cousin, I had the one experience in my life where I felt like I lived in Paris, by doing nothing all that Parisian–  lunch at a Russian restaurant with his international colleagues, followed by a car ride to a cafe we had a couple of beers at, late at night.  It always takes ignoring a city’s tourist areas to make you feel you truly live there!)

As detailed by "Time Was Soft There".

And fueled by a pair of memoirs I’d read recently enough–  From Paris to the Moon, by Adam Gopnik, and Time Was Soft There, by Jeremy Mercer– I did just that.  While I didn’t make it to a favorite old haunt (the truly beautiful and unique Musee de O’rsay, and I can’t believe they have a bar at the top!), I did traipse all over that magical city for two days, walking through the Jardin de Luxembourg, the Tuileries, and the Jardin des Plantes; visiting new sights like the Place des Vosges and the Marais, and old ones, such as espresso at the Cafe des Flores and lunch on the Ile St. Louis.

As I traipsed over town and road le metro on a few stops, I read book one of Fitzgerald’s Tender Is the Night (you know, when the Divers and Rosemary go to Paris).  Because why not, you’re in Paris for two days!  Drink the Beaujolais in the afternoon and luxuriously waste time sitting outside the fountain in the Tuileries– you’re in Paris, the real world can wait.

Is there a better place to while away the day than the Tuileries?

And one of these days I’ve got to steal another day or two there.  I’ve never been inside the Louvre.

Playlist:  An American In Paris – George Gershwin – He Went to Paris – Jimmy Buffett Somewhere Along the Line – Billy Joel – Hemingway’s Whiskey – Guy Clarke – Mrs. Hemingway – Mary Chapin Carpenter – Paris Nights / New York Mornings – Corinne Bailey Rae – Where Do You Go To My Lovely? – Sandra McCracken – Paris – Joshua Kadison – April in Paris – Dawn Upshaw – I Love Paris – Ella Fitzgerald

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4 Responses to “Travel: Part One”

  1. travel notes Says:

    Say thank you for publish pretty great informations, bookmarked this process web page, will arrive back again for much more.

  2. Not the NYFF, but… « Wally's Blog Says:

    […] Wally's Blog Just another WordPress.com weblog « Travel: Part One […]

  3. Travel: Part Two « Wally's Blog Says:

    […] Travel: Part Two By thiswaytotheegress Previous installments on recent travels can be read here and here. […]

  4. Crawford Says:

    “The Last Time I Saw Paris”-Hammerstein/Kern
    “Ah, Paree”-the great Stephen Sondheim…

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