Cold feet.

The thing I hate most in life, besides my bubbly going flat, is wet feet. It is imperative to have decent rain boots. But what happens in the winter, when the ground is very wet and very cold? Hunters are great in spring and summer but as soon as it gets cold, rubber will freeze your toes.  Although the classic Uggs are cozy and warm, they are no match for water which results in wet feet.  Ever since I purchased my plane ticket to the arctic cold (Finland) for Christmas, I’ve been on a mission to find the best waterproof/winter-proof boot while still being fashionable (I do live in Paris, don’t forget!).  I’ve done lots and lots and lots of research and here are are my top boots (in no particular order):

  1. 1. Suffolk by Sperry Top-Slider
  2. 2. Clare by  Dubarry
  3. 3. Serafina by La Canadienne

All of these boots have waterproof leather, insulted in the inside and a low heal. Any advice for a warm, waterproof, stylish boot? I’m very interested! 

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Beaujolais Nouveau est passé.

Happy Thanksgiving! Last week, France gathered around  with friends and family to taste the new vintage and now Americans are doing the same…with more food, of course.  

For Beaujolais, I celebrated with my cave. The hints of strawberry was a surprise and there were some (seen above) that weren’t bad (steer clear of the organic bottles!).  If you bought too much Beaujolais because you are either new to France or you are highly optimistic…what do you do with all those bottles; since most bottles will turn sour by the beginning of the year?

Do what French chefs do: make your own red wine vinegar with it!  Bonne idée. Non?

It’s easy:  just open the bottle and replace the cork with a paper towel . Wait overnight and by the next day, you have a delightful vinegar that you can use to make a salad dressing! 

Nacho Cheese. 

I’ve discovered something negative about having a balcony: cheese thieves.  

Trying to live-up to the French dining rules, I set my cheese outside an hour or two before serving. I stepped outside to faire des courses, and when I came back, the Comte (that was too large for my cheese box) was gone!! I stepped on to my balcony and saw the ripped, empty packaging on the floor. There wasn’t even a crumb to be found either! Where did my cheese go? What is my scary neighbor? A cat? A pigeon? We’ll never know. So, lesson learned, cheese only in its box may be allowed outside my balcony with no supervision!      

Anniversaries.

In Paris, you celebrate just about anything.  It’s great. This month I celebrated my birthday, which I honestly forgot about, until my family surprised me that night.  They gave me a petite fête complete with pink champagne, chocolate cake and laughs. It was very touching.  Also this month, I was invited to a 30-year France-iversary.  It was lovely hearing the stories of when they first came to France. I couldn’t help but think, where in the world will I be in 30-years!   

Isolation

I have had no internet and limited phone connection for over three weeks. I have felt a bit lonely.  On the plus side, it has made me more productive organizing and decorating my new apartment. I have made numerous trips to Ikea and back, and have been having people over to bridge the gap of my seclusion.  It’s funny to start up my computer and think, what do I do with my computer without wifi? We live in a very different world from 10 years ago.  

C’est la belle vie à Paris.      

On a cold and rainy day, I needed some warming and cheering up. I was in the 6th, close to Café de Flore, a very famous eatery. I have always thought of this place as cliché and I try to avoid places like this. However, I have heard good things about their hot chocolate, and since I was in the neighborhood, pourquoi pas. 

The verdict: I can see why people talk about this legendary place. The décor is still from the belle époque era, and the people looking is one of the best cafes to do so in Paris.  The hot chocolate was a perfect balance of not too thick, but not too thin; not too sweet, but not too bitter either .  The other diners were of a mixture of all sorts. Some locals getting a pick-me-up or catching up with friends, others were tourists from all around the world, taking snapshot after snapshot of their experience.  It was the perfect afternoon of people watching, catching up on my letters to loved ones and enjoying a perfect cup of hot chocolate in a beautiful room.  I’m definitely coming back. 

Café de Flore

 172 Boulevard Saint-Germain, 75006 Paris

01 45 48 55 26

Métro : St-Germain des Prés

Hours: 7h00 à 2h00 du Matin

European Evolution   

I’ve realized that Paris is slowly getting into my veins. It started this summer when I noticed that I was wearing an obscene amount of black (considering I’m a freelance  musician and black is our uniform—is a lot). I felt the need to wear heels grocery shopping. Then it was how I ate; ordering wine during lunch and a coffee afterwards and I wanted cheese for desert.  Plus I now eat continental style.

But then it was one rainy Saturday, coming gout of the metro, my shoe broke. I didn’t feel embarrassed or ran to buy another pair, I walked (the best I could) with confidence. The Parisian woman has poise that gives them the entitlement to live in Paris. To walk the streets with A-list movie stars, or dine at the same brasserie as business moguls do.  

Novembre

Fall in Paris is the Luxembourg gardens.   There’s the fall foliage from the perfectly manicured trees and bushes, the crunch with every step from the million  of leaves on the ground, and the bunches among bunches of yellow, red, and orange chrysanthemums.  Here one can escape Christmas in November and enjoy November for being November.  

My bistro

I think I finally found a bistro that I can all my own. It’s a charming little place that continues service all day, everyday (very important for my busy schedule) plus les garçons are friendly.  They have outside seating and a heated terrace as well. The view is very nice, situated in front of the Luxembourg Gardens.  Selections include French onion soup, plat du jours, croque monsieur/madame; traditional French cuisine that’s fait à la maison.  But what what is really outstanding: their ratatouille. The prices are pretty fair, for the 6th! 

Au Petit Suisse 

16 Rue de Vaugirard, 75006 Paris
Metro: Luxembourg RER B
Open everyday 7:30AM-2:00 AM 
01 43 26 03 81

Rain, rain, rain, rain.

I’ll let you in on a little secret. Paris rains a lot. It’s been raining here, for most of fall. Hard rain, soft rain. All kinds of rain.  It’s not going to let up anytime soon. Don’t forget your umbrella for November!