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PARIS IS PARIS - Beatchick's Paris April 2003 Trip Report

PARIS IS PARIS - Beatchick's Paris April 2003 Trip Report

May 18th, 2003, 02:42 PM
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After lunch, I made my way down the hill, to the right to cross in front of the funiculaire, then down rue Yvonne-le-Tac to the Metro Abbesses where, OF COURSE, I took some pictures. Nearby there was a working Wallace Fountain but naturally my water bottle was still full, so I took a picture of that. They're lovely, cast in a pretty green with water running continuously thru the middle.
Along, this street I bought a baby outfit at Babillage for my sister Cathy's bébé, some large postcards of old French ads for my family and some Roger & Gallet soap and a cheesy Paris mousepad for myself. I bought a crêpe from a crêpe vendor I found along the street, but I had ignored by fellow Fodorites' advice and paid for a crêpe that was pre-made. Completely nasty - took one bite and it was tasteless, thought maybe a bite closer to the middle might be better and it was equally as bad so threw it away. Blech.
Came upon rue Lepic and set out to find #15, the site of Café Tabac les Deux Moulins, the café where Amélie worked in the movie. Found it, took pics, & went inside for un grand café crème & a Vittel so that I could enjoy the ambience, picture myself in scenes of the movie & write in my journal. Alas, they did not accept credit cards but there was a bank machine just up the street! My only disappointment with the place was that the glass plate on which Amélie writes the menus was not there. Oh well, not everything can be like the movies!! There were some really annoying Australians nearby talking to a Frenchwoman, dogging Americans about how we feel uncomfortable speaking in French. Of course, the whole time they were conversing in English to this woman. I bit my tongue, gathered up my things, dashed off and offered up an "au revoir, madames et messieurs" to everyone upon exit.
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May 18th, 2003, 02:49 PM
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Finished up my tour of Montmartre:
*Vincent & Theo Van Gogh's home (54 r. Lepic)
*Moulin de la Galette
*I Love You wall (Square Jehan Rictus behind and to the left of Metro Abbesses)
*Chapelle du Martyrs (I HAD to see the spot where supposedly St. Denis was beheaded, then picked up his head & proceeded north to the site where Basilique St-Denis now stands & where he eventually stopped)
*Au Marché de la Butte (56 r des Trois Frères & r. Androuet - this is the market where Amélie shopped and where Lucien worked - around the corner on the left-hand side is a door where in the movie she resides)
*Thru Place Emile Goudeau to see the Bateau-Lavoir (13 r. Ravignon - Picasso, Braque, Max Jacob)
*Le Consulat (restaurant where the Impressionists used to meet and featured in a Paris screensaver by Liudmila Kondakova (18 r. Norvins & r. des Saules)( http://www.world-wide-art.com/art/sh...rklisting.html)
*Modigliani's studio (7 plc Jean-Baptiste-Clément)
*Place du Tertre
*Espace Dali (9 r. Poulbot - was closed but at least I know where it is now) : )
*Au Lapin Agile
*Rue St. Vincent (a pan down r. St. Vincent is how the movie "Amélie" opens up so I had to compare)
*Le Clos Montmartre (r. St-Vincent & r. des Saules - the only vineyard in Paris)
*Cimetière St-Vincent
I met a nice German couple & showed them where Modigliani's studio had been - funny how people from different countries pronounce his name. I had planned to have lunch at Angelina's, to head north to see Basilique St-Denis & to spend a few hours in the Louvre, but tromping thru Montmartre, along with stopping in lots of cafés to order drinks so that I could use the restrooms (Montmartre makes you tired & thirsty, so drink lots of water), caused me to spend all day there. So I basically had to blow the rest of that off. Instead I made my way back to the hotel, stopping to buy a bunch of lilacs from this guy selling them in front of the Metro.
When I returned I had a note from StCirq!
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May 18th, 2003, 02:58 PM
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She was in Paris! I called her & we discussed our plans for the next day. After the call, I didn't have much time left so I asked Stephan to call Bofinger to let them know I'd be 15 minutes late. Bofinger is about a 10-15 minute walk from my hotel (very close to Place de la Bastille) so I walked there, fast-walking the entire way.
Brasserie Bofinger
When I arrived, I stated I had a reservation at 10pm & introduced myself. The maître d' said something to the effect that at last we were able to meet and we both laughed! : ) Dinner was absolutely faboo - soup à l'oignon gratiné, châteaubriand with some wonderful grilled green beans & tomatoes, kir vin blanc, glass of Beaujolais & crème brulée (of course!!). Mmmmm. Service was good but with the typical French measured time. Dinner totaled to 46.50E. Didn't experience the bad service that Patricia Wells says she's experienced of late so perhaps they're taking note of her comments.
My mother would adore the décor of this place - the fabled dome/cupola IS gorgeous, oval with lots of greens, blues, and roses throughout. And the glistening dark wood of the grand stairway is stunning - very nice, very peaceful ambience. I was seated in the non-smoking area and for one second I smelled cigarette smoke but then no longer. The Bofinger smoking police must've been in effect.
There was a handsome couple seated next to me from Switzerland and after we'd both finished eating we struck up a conversation; they had been to the opera that night. The gentleman accidentally spilled his glass of wine and it cascaded onto my adjoining table. Within seconds a waiter had materialized, dabbing at my tablecloth and then covered up the offending spot with clean linen. Monsieur apologized profusely and said he'd ruined my dinner. I told him no, no, as long as the wine didn't spill on anyone's clothes all is okay. See, the waiter even covered the spot. Such nice, gentle folk they were!
Then trekked back to my hotel as quickly as my poor, tired feet would carry me. I just love the Marais - I felt so very safe here.
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May 18th, 2003, 03:06 PM
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Fantastic report! Bravo!
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May 18th, 2003, 03:34 PM
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Fabooooo Report
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May 18th, 2003, 04:52 PM
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La Maison Fournaise with StCirq
StCirq & I met at the Fontaine des Innocentes at the Square des Innocentes near the church of St-Eustache. She was promptly on time. I'm always late so I made certain to get there early. While I waited, I took pictures of the skaters dudes around the fountain. I dated a really cool, really nice straight-edge skater punk in my early 20s so I find skaters fascinating!
StCirq is lovely on-line and StCirq is lovely in person - blonde, thin, gracious, highly intelligent, very interesting and wicked funny - just an entertaining person all around. She placed me completely at ease and I hope I did the same for her. Just tremendous fun to hang out with her for the day!! I hope to be friends with her for a long time.
We took the RER to the Ile des Impressionistes and meandered along the way to the restaurant carrying on our animated conversation. It was a hot (unseasonably so), crisp, clear day - perfect for our outing. La Maison Fournaise is the spot where Renoir painted his "Luncheon of the Boating Party" that was featured in the movie, Amélie. (http://www.restaurant-fournaise.fr/Page_welcome.htm) We lingered over a long lunch (seafood ravioli & lambchops for StCirq, rabbit terrine & roast pork for me, with a light, white Cheverny wine, 2001, from Les Borderies) and finished up with some café while smoking. Neither one of us drinks espresso in the States as it tastes too bitter but somehow the French create it hot & strong with no bitterness. It requires not too much sugar & no cream. Funnily enough, neither one of us smoke in the States, either, as we both have children for whom we're trying to set good examples.
Later, we visited the Magritte exposition at the Musée du Jeu de Paume (not covered by the Museum pass), discussed our impressions and then chit-chatted & smoked outside, watching the 5 o'clock traffic. I was so sleepy when I first went out there ('twas warmish in the musée) and thought I'd have to go back to my hotel for a nap, but conversation with StCirq rejuvenated me and I was able to carry on with the rest of my itinerary that evening. It was very difficult to break away from such an enjoyable person. I find that we're very much alike, including the types of research we do for a trip, even to the point of procuring info in case someone should ask about it.
I paused at the Place de la Concorde to take some pictures in the late afternoon sun and stopped by one of the vendors to buy a good Plan de Paris (6E - every bit worth the cost), then I walked down the Champs-Elysées until it was nearly time for my reservation at Trumilou. I veered off to my other destination, Man Ray, located at 34 r Marbeuf, for a drink - a very expensive kir at 13E. Man Ray (http://www.manray.info/) is dark & cool, terribly branché (a term that seems to have the same double meaning as our word trendy), playing hypnotic techno ambient music. Alas, no sight of Johnny Depp, John Malkovich, Sean Penn, nor Mick Hucknall, who jointly own the place.
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May 18th, 2003, 04:57 PM
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Trumilou (84 quai de l'Hotel de ville, 4th) (http://www.fodors.com/miniguides/mgr...view=full&pg=7) (http://www.restaurantsomh.com/dublin.htm#) was lovely - very eclectic, just the thing to soothe a Beatchick's soul. It is indeed inhabited by students (as attested to by the Germans at my next table) just as Fodor's claims, but I had a difficult time scoping out the resident artists. It's not as if they wear a union button. Dinner was some sort of duck in a pot with broth and veggies - very homestyle, explicitly simple. This is followed up with a crème caramèle & café. And, of course, a quarter carafe of Sancerre blanc I drank with dinner, fulfilling my vow of drinking Sancerre at every opportunity (thanks again, JOdy!). Dinner was only 24.50E, not too shabby.
Spoke with one of the German ladies at the next table. She had come to visit her student friends and was surprised I was staying in Paris for the full 9 days. She thought it most unusual for Americans but then she granted that it's so expensive for us to get to Europe & we have so little vacation time that's why we hop from place to place, only settling down for 3 days at a time in one place. She was also curious as to how I'd found out about Trumilou & I showed her the description from Fodor?s; she laughed as she agreed.
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May 18th, 2003, 05:15 PM
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May 18th, 2003, 06:30 PM
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Thank you, Bree70, Scarlett (that's a FABOOO heart you got there Katie S! - how'd you do it??), & Cigalechanta!

I had made up an itinerary to find some author/artist haunts in the 6th and followed it mostly Wednesday morning. First, I stopped off at Poilâne's (Lionel) to buy a small round of sourdough with walnuts and to buy a lovely linen bag with "Poilâne" embroidered simply & elegantly on the side; then I walked over to Café de la Mairie (where Henry Miller would sip his morning caf&eacute for a cup of café crème; then I was off to see the homes of the following: Gerald & Sarah Murphy, Dolly Wilde (Oscar's niece - she had quite the reputation in the '20s), the Beat Hotel/formerly known as Hôtel Rachou now known as the Hôtel de Vieux Paris (Ginsberg, Kerouac, Burroughs & Corso had stayed there during the '50s), where I took photos of the Beat's pics hanging on the wall (alas, no Kerouac) and photos of the hotel registry with photos of the Beats pasted inside and the latest entry from Gregory Corso, e.e. cummings, Gertrude Stein & Alice B. Toklas, Oscar Wilde, Natalie Barney's salon (looked for the well that was supposed to be a tunnel to the Louvre but the garden was locked & overgrown), Patricia Wells (madame next door pushed the buttons for the door code and I was able to see, but not gain entry to, the courtyard), Thornton Wilder & the Hôtel d'Angleterre (highly recommended by a dear friend of mine - Hi Scarlett! - and where Benjamin Franklin had stayed).
During these treks, I popped into the salon de thé, Ladurée, on the rue Jacob to try just one small Pistache macaroon (1.25E). FANTABULOUS!! I think I have a new dessert favorite. They are to die for - crispy on the outside and chewy/light on the inside. Wow.
Then I was off to the Musée d'Orsay where I only completed the top floor, it is so huge & overwhelming! Beautiful, wonderful collection of Impressionist works with a lovely view of Sacré Coeur from the terrace. More than anything, I think I loved the pastels collection the most although some are very hard to see. The Monets were fabulous, of course, but I think I was more impressed in person by the Renoirs.
I met StCirq for lunch at 2pm at La Cigale, a wonderful restaurant specializing in soufflés (9 bis r. Chomel, right next to Bon Marché in the 6th). Wunderbar! She had a crab soufflé, I had the cheese soufflé (I really wanted the artichoke soufflé but they aren't in season until June), and we both had the raspberry soufflé for dessert as well as more Sancerre and café.
After our good-byes (I really hope to hang out with StCirq in the future), I spent the remainder of the afternoon at Hôtel des Invalides to see Napoleon's Tomb and then at the Musée Rodin. My favorite was "The Kiss" and the smaller beside it that resembles it but the lips are not touching. This is very erotic stuff - very moving!
My throat was sore (allergies/cigs) and so were my feet so I cut back to my hotel to rest that evening. Tried to buy an Orangina from the vending machine at the Métro but no go (took my money), so stopped off for an ice cream on the way back to the hotel. Spent the evening pasting stuff into my journal, doing my budget, balancing my checkbook & washing clothes - boring stuff, yet necessary. Even in Paris, one must take care of the mundanities of life.
I was awoken from my sleep by a phone call from Terry saying that Meagan had a very painful earache. What guilt! I'm having the time of my life, living out a life's dream and my daughter was at home suffering from an earache. Poor baby! I asked him if I should come home and he said no but he asked for advice. I advised Tylenol, Benadryl, cough syrup with guaifenasin (to unclog the eardrum/eustachian tubes), warm moist towels for her ear, an old home remedy of blowing smoke in her ear (y'never know what'll work & I was desperate) along with the family physician's name to call in the morning hoping she could call in a prescription if necessary. Then I got on the phone with Megs and cried with her, told her I loved her. Next I talked to Ian and sent him my love, then talked to Terry and asked him if he'd be all right & said I'd e-mail him in the morning & to call me if he needed to.
I'm very lucky that Terry is their father - he's a fantastic dad & very loving to them.
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May 18th, 2003, 10:40 PM
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Welcome back beatchick (sorry, I am a bit late on the welcome!). Great to hear you had a groovy time. Nice bit on the snails, but it still doesn't want to make me try them again. ;-)
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May 19th, 2003, 07:56 AM
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I am enjoying your report Beatchick. This was our first trip to Paris, so we really hit the highlights. Your report is giving me so many ideas for our next trip. We stayed just down the street from the Angleterre at du Danube, and somehow we missed Laderee. My mantra now is "next time, next time." Thanks for posting.
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May 19th, 2003, 03:16 PM
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Thanks, Mina!

Welcome back - glad to see you here safe & sound (as if we ever had any worries!!).

I know, Suki, I know, so many "next time" "next time"s!! Like next time I'll have breakfast at Laduree or next time I'll get to do the passages or the Viaduc des Arts. When did you go to Paris? When do you think you'll get to go again??
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May 19th, 2003, 03:26 PM
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Hey Beatchick, we landed in Paris on April 12th, and stayed 4 nights when we left for Amboise. My daughters who are 16 and 12 really loved Paris. I thought it was so amusing that they would be dragging through the museums, but everytime we sat down to eat, they would be the happiest girls in the world! We don't know when we will get back to France again, but we are definitely looking forward to it. By the way, I have always loved "On the Road." It's like one long frenetic poem. Your literary tour sounded fun!
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May 19th, 2003, 05:58 PM
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Ahhhh, Suki, you sound like a woman after my own heart!! Kerouac is my fave.
"......because the only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centre light pop
and everybody goes 'Awww'..."

You were in Paris the same time I was there (I arrived the 12th & returned the 20th). Wonder if we passed each other on the street or in the museums??
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May 26th, 2003, 06:12 PM
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Paid my hotel bill 1st thing as I was worried about money and wanted to make sure the hotel bill was paid. Eight nights, 1 hotel breakfast & 1 phone call came to a very reasonable total of 431.17 Euro - not too shabby! Of course it helped that I reserved 8 months in advance to lock in the 53E price: after January, the price increased to 55E (for a single/petite chambre). A double chambre for 1 person is 67/78E and for 2 is 78E. Chambre avec 2 lits (room w/2 beds) runs 92E for 2, 108E for 3 & 125E for 4 people. Stéphan told me the day I left that someone had already reserved for July 2004! Can you imagine? A year and a 1/4 in advance.
Hotel website for the Grand Hotel Jeanne d'Arc is www.hoteljeannedarc.com, e-mail is [email protected], phone#: 00 33 (0)1 48 87 62 11, fax#: 00 33 (0)1 48 87 37 31. For those who don't know, if you're dialing from the U.S. you dial 011-33 -1, then the number, if dialing from within France just use the last 10 digits starting with the (0)1.
To start the day, I went to the nearest ATM, withdrew the last of my money (when I go to Paris I do so strictly on the funds I have in my savings/checking accounts) and then headed off to Miss Manon - Patissier/Boulanger/Traiteur - for breakfast (a real pain au chocolat & café - somehow they just don't taste like this at Panera in Cincy). Miss Manon (open from 7am 'til 10pm every day except Monday) & Boulangerie Paul sit side-by-side on rue Saint-Antoine just a 3-minute walk from the hotel, through Place-St-Cathérine & down rue Caron & directly across the street at #87. Also there is the Café Tabac Jean Bart for cigarettes, late-night café or frites & cidre!! Did I mention that the St. Paul Metro is just 5 minutes away?!?! I was just loving my hotel.
Just a little further west is a Supermarché at #115. This trip was a trip of firsts. I picked up a framboise Yop as I'd never had drinkable yogurt before and which I had read about on Fodor's website. It's GOOD, but it upset my stomach for the rest of the day (hmmm, and I thought the local yogurt was supposed to acclimate one's stomach to the local bacteria - oh well.)
So I carried that with me to Akyrion (www.akyrion.com), a web bar just a 5-10 minute walk away at 19 rue Charlemagne, a street behind the St.-Paul-St.-Louis church that lies parallel to rue Saint-Antoine and Quai des Céléstins. I neeed to e-mail Terence to see if my Megs was okay, to check e-mail & to check my bank account. Pretty cool place!! Besides the normal web bar stuff, they also specialize in gaming, specifically Everquest (something that Ian & Terry would definitely be interested in) for just 4E/hour. Internet access runs to about 7E/hour.
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May 26th, 2003, 06:22 PM
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Before I started on my walking itinerary that day, I stopped off at the famous Parisian ice cream shop, Berthillon (http://www.berthillon-glacier.com), located on the Ile St-Louis for a cup of 3 sorbet scoops (3.65E for 3). This year I tried pêche/abricot/melon (peach/apricot/melon). I deemed pêche to be the best of this year's flavors! Last year I tried framboise/cassis/poire (raspberry/blackcurrant/pear - which were ALL equally good!!).
Then I stopped off at my favorite souvenir place, Maison Paris, on #5 Quai de Montebello, to say hello to Pierrick, the owner of this lovely little shop facing Notre Dame on the Left Bank that sells high-quality yet relatively inexpensive souvenirs. For instance, those Eiffel Tower keychains that you buy from the annoying in-your-face street vendors near the Eiffel Tower for 2E each can be bought at Maison Paris at 10 for 2E total here. Pierrick vaguely remembered me from 2 years ago and gave me his new brochures, showed me proudly around the store, showed me some new wares and pointed out some changes he'd made since my last visit. I told him that Kristin & I tried to find his place last year and couldn't and I had despaired since then that one of my fave places was closed. I was happy it was really open. I promised him I'd return later and set off to explore the 5th.
Thursday was the day I followed the "Latin Quarter to Ile St-Louis" walking itinerary from Fodor's "Paris 2001" with some literary haunts gleaned from my copy of Arlen J. Hansen's "Expatriate Paris - A Cultural and Literary Guide to Paris of the 1920s". Saw that Square Rene Viviani was open. Both prior trips it was always closed. I walked through to take pictures of St-Julien-le-Pauvre and of either the oldest or the 2nd oldest tree in all of Paris, depending upon your sources. The gentleman in the park who pointed out the tree to me insisted it was THE oldest. I suppose the ones who sit in the Jardin du Luxembourg would insist theirs is!!
Stepped inside the nearby Hotel Esmeralda to see if I could see a room. Monsieur handed me the key & directed me upstairs. I took pictures of the room and of the sitting room. I suppose it is a little too shabby for some but all I could think about was how old the building was & that it did have a certain eclectic charm - definitely not for everyone but perfect for an old soul like me.

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May 26th, 2003, 06:34 PM
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Trekked up rue de la Huchette and, at #5, on the top floor consisting of 2 rooms, found Elliot Paul's apartment featured in the movie "Last Time I Saw Paris" that starred Gene Kelly as an American expatriate in Paris and Leslie Caron. Then after stopping at & gazing up at the Saint-Michel statue in the Place, I paused at #3 Blvd. Saint-Michel to check out where Café de la Gare used to be. Supposedly, this is the place Hemingway described in "A Moveable Feast":
"It was a pleasant café, warm and clean and friendly, and I hung up my old waterproof on the coat rack to dry...and I took out a notebook from the pocket of the coat and a pencil and started to write..."
To find it easily today, just know that it is now the location of the Hotel Royal St-Michel and the café SNC La Favorite.
Next stop was the Musée de Cluny (Musée National du Moyen-Age). This place is truly cool!! There is just no real opportunity to see Middle Ages artifacts here in the U.S. and the Lady & the Unicorn tapestries are just très belle. However, the thing I liked the best was the Sundial clock on the outside of the building opposite of the well. After that, I made my way to #17 rue Malebranche to see the setting for Audrey Hepburn's & Maurice Chevalier's apartment in the movie "Love in the Afternoon". Took a glance at that and then headed over to the Pantheon so that I could FINALLY see Foucault's pendulum. I've wanted to visit this place for forever but had never made it until this moment. Of particular interest to me were the crypts of Marie Curie's & some of the 17th century philosophes' crypts (such as Voltaire). It was a very hot, sunny day in Paris that day yet freezing cold inside the Pantheon - should've brought a sweater. The marble floors and walls and high ceilings must keep it so cold.
For lunch, I stopped off at the Hotel Degres de Notre Dame and feasted on my very first, very tasty couscous with merguez sausage (wonderfully spicy). This Auberge was the very first hotel I stayed at in Paris and I'd never had the chance to eat there. A very good choice for couscous, I must say!!
Then I was off to see the different apartments where Hemingway worked (he rented an apt. @ 39 r. Descartes on the top floor - supposedly the same room where the poet Verlaine died in 1896) and where he lived (74 r. du Cardinal-Lemoine - 4th floor apt.) with his wife Hadley. The latter has a plaque on the front stating as such. Afterwards, I scuttled through Place de la Contrescarpe where the students from the Sorbonne have hung out, eaten & drunk for centuries on my way to the Arènes de Lutèce (Lutèce is in reference to the early Roman name for Paris - Lutetia - okay, more info than you really want to know ) to see the Roman ruins, watch the men play boules and watch the kidsies play soccer. Walking in past the lush greenery of the park area it's hard to fathom this was once a Roman arena but walking up the old limestone steps you can feel where each has been worn down by many, many feet. While relaxing there smoking and writing in my journal I overheard French teens sing French rap - French rap is just TOO funny, I can't even describe it.
Before long, I knew I should make my way to the nearby Jardin des Plantes to check out the Jardin Alpin inside (some sort of hidden garden according to Frommer's "Irreverent Guide to Paris") but it was closing just as I walked thru the gate. Yet another thing that has made it onto the list of "Things to do next time I come".
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May 26th, 2003, 07:02 PM
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So instead I went off in search of the apartment George Orwell lived in during his "Down & Out in Paris & London" days. Just as I found it & was gazing up in awe at the building, a grandmotherly French lady decked out in a crisp navy blue trenchcoat stopped to see if I was lost. I told her about Orwell's apartment. She quizzed, "Orwell?" and I thought she didn't know who he was so I wrote out his name and some titles of his books "Animal Farm" and "1984" and she nodded that "oui, oui" she knew who he was. In French, she indicated she'd lived in the area all her life and never knew the great English novelist ever lived there. In gratitude, she then took me by the hand and led me to the courtyard of her building that was the setting for the convent in Les Miserables. She wrote down a few words for me but I'm not sure how to piece them together: "nonnes monjas", "convent" & the phrase "C'est le convent ou Jean Valjean a 'élevé' Cosette." A friend of mine tells me élevé means "to bring up". So I suppose it was the place Jean Valjean took Cosette to have her brought up by the nuns. In any case, when we stepped inside the courtyard there hung this MASSIVE beautifully carved wooden door that surely hung as the convent door during the building's convent days. The address of the building is 18 r. Tournefort (near r. Pot de Fer) and at the corner above the modern-day blue street sign is the hammered-in old street name, Rue Neuve Genevi1eve.
By this time, evening had set in and I set off to find the homes/studios of Man Ray & Hilaire Hiler (8 r. du Val-de-Grace, truly ugly building) in the most southwest corner of the 5th, almost to the 14th, of Thornton Wilder (269 r. St-Jacques where he wrote most of "The Bridge at San Luis Rey"), Samuel Beckett (45 r. d'Ulm, Ecole Normale Supérieuere, where he lived as he served as James Joyce's secretary & while he taught at the Ecole), Jeanne Hebuterne (8-bis r. Amyot - Modigliani's 9-month's along pregnant lover who killed herself by jumping from the top floor of the building shortly after his death), and lastly, Marcel Duchamp's studio (11 r. Larrey - major dadaist famous for "Nude Descending a Staircase" and his Mona-Lisa-with-a-mustache-and-beard).
I had ventured into a quiet, dark area of the 5th so I hustled back to the more bustling section and popped into Connolly's Corner (now HOW could I resist), an Irish bar (member of the Irish Pub Association of France) (http://www.gps.caltech.edu/~vorlon/test3frame1.html) on 12 r. Mirbel. This is a great, funky bar - a very authentic experience, although what type of authentic experience, I'm not sure! I walked up to the bartender and ordered a pint of Guinness (it really does taste better overseas - I suppose the crossing of the Channel doesn't affect the taste, just the crossing of the Atlantic!) Told the gent I was a Connolly, he handed me my pint and charged me 1E. Then he looked at me with one eyebrow cocked and inquired if I really WAS a Connolly and I told him yup - same spelling and everything & showed him my passport. When I told him I'd heard of the place and HAD to make the trek there to have a beer he charged me nothing! Instead I handed him a 2E tip. This place looks for any opportunity to give away pints; if you walk in with a tie on, they'll cut it off but compensate you with a free one. So go and wear the most god-awful ugly tie you can find (like from the Dollar Tree Store). Ties are hanging all over the place in testament to the many pints they've given away. Rue Mirbel is a little difficult to find so bring a good map. You'll locate the street somewhere off of rue Monge. The live music is great & the crowd is loud & raucous - loads o' fun. And everyone seems to know everyone else, so it's a convivial place to just hang out.
It was late, I was tired, and my feet ached (a recurring theme in our story??) so I headed back to my hotel before the Metro stopped - I didn't relish walking from r. Mirbel to r. Jarente. Egads!
I hadn't eaten since 5 that afternoon and it was close to midnight so I was starving. I popped into the Tabac Jean Bart to see if I could just get some frites and they said o.k. Wonderful people, they are! Noticed they had cidre on tap so ordered one of those as well. Ah, a perfect combination to end the day!!

Beatchick is offline  
May 26th, 2003, 09:04 PM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 27
Am so enjoying your trip report, Beatchick -- looking forward to the next installments. You're making me feel I could really make the trip by myself and have a great time in the process. You had such wonderful adventures!
knoble is offline  
May 26th, 2003, 10:10 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 60
Awesome trip report! I will be visiting Paris for the first time at the end of June. I can't wait!
travelmom is offline  

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