Monday, 3 October 2011

Monday in Paris ~ A GTG, too much sun and walking and no dinner for us!

When I last left my faithful readers (all three of you!), we had just come back from our first lunch in Paris on Sunday afternoon.  The rest of the day was fairly low key ~ we took a nap in the afternoon as 2 flights in as many days combined with a very early start in the morning and a very hot sunny day in Paris took its toll on us.

After watching the sun go down over the Paris rooftops, we got ready for our first night on the town.

We had no dinner plans for our first night and decided to just walk around and see what we felt like ~ wait, let me rephrase that ~ Den wanted to just walk around and see what he felt like.  The same thing happens whenever we do this ~ we wander around, can't make a decision and just finally choose a place to eat because we are now starving and usually end up with a meh meal.  I had asked him several times during the day what he felt like and gave him a few options but he didn't want to be tied down to anything.  After over an hour of walking and still not seeing anything we wanted, we decided to go back to another tried and true favourite ~ Pizza Momo, a little pizza (duh!) and pasta joint which happens to be right across the street from us this year.  We each had a delicious pizza from their wood burning oven, sat on their little terrace on a balmy fall evening and just people watched on the busy rue Rivoli.  We were back in the apartment before 11pm and sat and enjoyed the moon shining over the dome of St Paul.

After a great night's sleep in our cozy little studio, we got up around 8am. I was meeting a few of the girls from Our Paris Forum, a wonderful website frequented by other Parisian addicts like myself.  We were meeting at Valentins in Passage Jouffroy in the 9th arrondissements at 9:30.  It's funny when you talk to people on the internet often over a long period of time ~ you start to feel like you know them even though you've never met in person.  This is even more the case when you all share a common interest, like we all did with Paris.  When you put 7 women together who've spoken to each other online for years, you get a table full of laughing, chattering people all talking at once, wanting to catch up and share their trip and experiences and get to know each other better.  You'd think there would be awkward pauses since these are basically strangers meeting each other for the first time, but we couldn't get our words out fast enough and time flew too quickly and before we knew it, we were making our goodbyes and going our separate ways.  I loved meeting each one of these special ladies and hope our paths cross again some day.

Den and I had planned to meet up in front of Opera Garnier at around 11:30 (as much as I love meeting the people I talk to every day on my various forums, Den really doesn't have the same interest as I do and opted out of the breakfast).  It only took me about 15 minutes to walk over and he was waiting for me on the magnificent steps of this opulent building.

We had decided earlier that day that we would walk over to Parc Monceau in the 8th arrondissement.  We had visited this lovely park a few years ago in the spring and wanted to see it again in the fall.  We picked up some baguette sandwiches at Boulangerie Prudhomme just outside the park and sat on a bench and enjoyed a very Parisian lunch along with many other city dwellers taking advantage of a gorgeous Indian summer day.  The pistachio tart that Den picked for dessert was the perfect little sweet treat to end our al fresco meal.

We then walked around the park while Den took his many pictures.  There was an exhibit of Chinese artists in the park and some of the sculptures were quite interesting.

yup, it's chickens!

does anyone remember Marie's sculpture?

We made the mad decision to walk back to the Marais in the hot afternoon sun.

We got to Palais Royale after walking for almost 2 hours, down Avenue Messine to rue Moromesnil and finally along the fabulously extravegent rue de Faubourg Saint Honore, lined with every possible high end designer boutique there is.  We sat at a cafe in front of La Comedie Francaise and had a drink to try to recharge our batteries, but we decided we just couldn't face another hour of walking so we jumped on the metro and 10 minutes later were at St Paul metro station.  After stopping in at the Monoprix for some goodies, we were back in the apartment and Den fixed us a nice little snack to tie us over until our dinner  reservation at Les Fines Gueles, a restaurant in the 1st that I had read some great reviews on.

We enjoyed some pate, baguette, grapes and fresh figs with a few glasses of Tavel and just started to decompress.

I was online chatting with a friend on Facebook when I started to get a headache.  Within 2 minutes, I had the worst pain in my head that I have ever experienced.  Den had to help me to the bed where I lay immobilized for about an hour, thinking that my brain was going to explode from the top of my head.  I think my body was trying to tell me ~ hey lady, you're 51!  As if you can walk for miles in extreme heat on the uneven cobblestone streets of a huge city like Paris and get away with it.  Smarten up!

Eventually, the pain began to subside but we had to cancel our dinner reservations since I didn't feel up to leaving the apartment.  After making sure I was OK, Den went to our friendly neighbourhood Monoprix and got the fixings for a little pasta meal that was just fine.  We ate it on our balcony, enjoying the fresher night air and the bright moon over the rooftops.  We discovered we can even see the revolving beam of the Eiffel Tower every minute!

So I guess that after more than 2 weeks of being on the go in foreign lands, eating out, drinking wine every day and pushing ourselves to keep going, it all caught up with me today.  Tomorrow, we'll try to keep it to a half marathon instead of a full one, lol.

Bonne nuit!


  1. Oh wow!! Heat stroke!! not a good look Murielle! Hope you recovered ok!! and it was great to see the smiling faces of the OPF'ers!! Of course I recognise my lovely friend Denise and my lovely friend Jane in that pic and you of course!!! :-) Great post and I'm pleased to be counted in your '3' followers :-) I am one of them oui??? ahhhh tom pee if I'm not! LOL
    Love your work! xx Murielle xx

  2. 34 degrees celsius equals 93 F degrees! Wow! No wonder I couldn't fully appreciate the Montmartre area when I went that day shortly after the GTG (It was much better when I went there in June and was cooler! ha!). But despite our too much walking in the sun that day...we did have a great GTG! Glad you are feeling better now!

  3. Whew!....we tried to have "romantic" walk along the Siene, but the heat was too much for us and we ended up hopping on a bus to Montparnassse and the cool of the shopping centre. I didn't know it was 34 degrees, no wonder we were wilting.

    So nice to finally meet you in the flesh but as you say, there is never enough time to talk. Puff and you are gone!

    Glad you are better and the weather has cooled a bit. Much better for sightseeing in Paris. This reminds me why I don't like beachy type holidays. Too hot to do anything and I hate lounging about. Typical Brit, always moaning about the weather! Love Denise

  4. Hey Sue and Denise,

    Yes, our time together was much too brief. I truly hope we can meet again for a longer chat one of these days.

    We are enjoying the cooler weather ~ much better for strolling (and eating, lol). Denise, we still love our beach holidays ~ we really like doing absolutely nothing sometimes!

    Roniece, of course you are 1 of my 3. Maybe I'll even get to 5 soon, lol