mom mode post #191 – on a trip of a lifetime part III
June 14, 2012 § Leave a comment
Thursday morning woke us with a nice warm breeze. We decided to try a new patisserie for breakfast. We were so pleased, the people there were so friendly. Actually let me make a parenthesis here and just say how the french were so friendly to us. We didn’t meet one sales person, one waiter or anyone for that matter, that wasn’t extra nice to us. The husband’s high school french (i.e. May I got to the bathroom please?) combined with my 5th grade french (i.e. Good morning, how are you?) didn’t amount to much, but everyone went the extra mile to help us out.
We sat on an iron cafe table. No tourists in sight. Just regular Parisians having their cafe au lait. And the grotesque Brazilian having mounds of macarons for breakfast. What can I say? I just couldn’t have enough of them. That morning we visited the Jardin de Luxembourg. After a long day of sightseeing the day before, we welcomed the sight of crisp french gardens and delicate English roses. We sat there for a long while, resting our tired legs, letting go of all the stress of the past two years. Afterwards I wanted to hit up two other museums, but I also wanted to save enough time for some fun shopping. So I let go of seeing my beloved Degas (hope to catch it on another trip!) to go see the Rodin museum. My sister had said it was fabulous. And it was. The gardens, the sculptures, the Van Gogh and Monet! My eyes relished on it all, inspired for decades to come.
As I sat there admiring the large replica of “The Thinker”, a group of school children came in with their teacher. I couldn’t understand what he was saying. I could make out that he was telling them to admire the way the Thinker was posing, for they all started to copy the statue’s pose. It hit me how lucky these children are, to get to go on field trips on a city that breathes so much culture and history. Another important note, the teacher was there by himself with the kids, and they all behaved quite all. No other chaperones needed. I thought of all the field trips I chaperoned as an ESL teacher. How much us Americans (most of the times with reason) tend to overprotect our children.
The rest of our afternoon was spent at the Lafayette Galleries. We had lunch at their Gourmet space, the husband found a comfy sidewalk to wait on and I set out for some fun shopping, but mostly exploring. For I don’t think I could afford much of what is sold there. I was amazed at the sheer greatness of it all. Six floors filled with every possible designer need. Gorgeous architecture and crowded, crazy crowded. To my surprise (not) there were tons of Brazilians! In all my travels I hadn’t seen that many Brazilians in one place outside of Brazil! But more and more Brazilians are starting to travel. Everywhere we went we met at least one or two Brazilians. Crazy. And most Brazilians, of course, love some good shopping.
We topped off our afternoon with a pre-dinner picnic on the lawn by the Eiffel tower. The husband and I took off our shoes and proceeded to have one of the most relaxing dates we’ve had. Ever. It was just magnificent. I don’t remember when was the last time our bare feet had touched grass. The sun shining just so, the breeze going just right. It was the most normal we felt in some time.
Dinner was had at the yummy Cafe Constant. If you’re ever in Paris, don’t think twice, just go there. We aren’t big fans of fancy stuffy restaurants, so casual dining is the way to go for us. This was casual dining at its best. The service was great and the food, amazing. The creamiest mashed potatoes, just-right steaks and sweet to the point Creme Caramel for dessert!
Our evening was crowned with a view of Paris and the Eiffel tower from the top of the Maine-Montparnasse Tower, a gorgeous sunset, wonderful view, even better company.