September 29, 2014
There are the French and then there are the Parisians. There really is a big difference between the two.*
Now of course, I don't (currently) live in Paris, but after spending a considerable amount of time there over the last few years, and especially in the last couple of months, I know that I will never be and probably could never be une vrai Parisienne.
And I'm ok with that.
Here are some of the reasons why:
1) I will never be able to master "the pout" properly
2) I don't own the requisite sequined Vanessa Bruno cabas
3) I don't like to lie in the sun
4) I never order un Perrier menthe
5) I'm (usually) way too punctual
6) I don't smoke
7) I can't find a shade of red lipstick that suits me
8) I'm terrified to ride a bike in Paris
9) I can't get my hair into that messy yet elegant updo (but I wish I could!)
10) I wasn't born there
Sometimes when I see young Parisian women walking down the street or sitting in a café, it looks like they are trying oh so very hard to exude an aura of perfection. They pose and pout and keep their movements in check. Just watching them exhausts me.
I'm much happier embracing my imperfect, unfashionable, smiling, clumsy self. I may be French, but I doubt anyone will ever look at me and think that I am une Parisienne. Which is kind of a relief.
* That's a subject that warrants its own blog post, so please just trust me on this
September 15, 2014
The train between Bayeux and Paris has become my
I've become so familiar with the route that I know about what time I will lose 3G connection on my phone after leaving the station in Caen, how long it takes to get from the station at Mantes-la-Jolie to Paris and at precisely what time I will see the top of the Eiffel Tower if I glance out the window on the right side of the train.
At home I start the day with a big café au lait, cook with a lot of vegetables, avoid weeding the lawn as long as I can, cuddle with my husband and our chihuahua (and try to cuddle with our cat) and probably watch too much TV.
In Paris I start my day with a cup of tea or une noisette, eat Thai, Vietnamese and Indian food, snack on cheese and charcuterie, miss my husband, dog and cat and when I'm not trying to be a good house guest, probably spend too much time playing Words With Friends.
Eventually, when we find our apartment in Paris, these two worlds will meld together and I will avoid stepping a foot inside of la Gare Saint Lazare as long as I can.
I will savor the fact that I can go home at the end of the day with some take away Thai or Indian food or a bag of fresh veggies and cheese from the market and be with my little family. My husband and the dog will be happy to see me and the cat will pretend that he doesn't give a hoot. (Of course I know better)
We'll have friends over for drinks and/or dinner, get to know our local commerçants and I'll become as bored with commuting on the Métro as I currently am with commuting on the train.
I can't wait.
September 7, 2014
August 31, 2014
It's funny how these bouts of nostalgia hit.
Just a few weeks ago I wrote about moving to France and the point of no return, and yet here I am today after watching a cooking show that took place in southern Louisiana and New Orleans, feeling incredibly homesick.
We only lived in New Orleans for a few years, but it definitely got under my skin.
I do know what it means to miss New Orleans.
I try to return almost every year and while I'm there I eat (best food city in America!), soak up its rich atmosphere and celebrate. Because that's just what you do.
Because almost every day there seems to be some kind of celebration in New Orleans. For music. For crawfish season. For cocktails. For living in a great neighborhood. For holidays and for non holidays. Because it's the weekend. Because it's a Tuesday.
It doesn't matter...New Orleans simply celebrates. Everything.
So I've decided to take a little trip down memory lane to easy my homesickness until my next visit.
I think I'll go and make some jambalaya for dinner tonight.