Bounjour and welcome to this week’s blog post from Nicola Arnold…..all about Paris. There could not be a more appropriate follow to Quebec City so voila:
Last night, we ate a marvelously rich & succculent French supper at Batifole in Toronto. ‘We’ being a friend from my university with whom I studied abroad for a year at Université de Savoie in Chambéry, France a few years ago. What better way to toast to our new working-worlds in the city and to reminisce about the days we spent hiking in the French Alps than to sit down for a meal that included such quintessentially French orders such as:
* Salade d’Endive, Prosciutto, Copeaux d’Emmental de Cave, Vinaigrette aux Figues.
* Le Cassoulet Royal; Confit de Canard, Saucisses Fermière, Poitrine de Porc Rôtie.
(Plus one of the daily specials that I am forced to describe less eloquently: Rhubarb tart with flaky pastry, shallots, cheese and garlic).
The venue? Authentique. The dishes? Délicieux. The memories? Nostalgique. The experience? Formidable!
A little quirk of mine? I am often aware (thinking to myself) of where I bought the that clothes I’m wearing. Last night, I was wearing a sweater that I had bought in France at one of my favourite shops – . Black & grey, with mismatching buttons. In university, if I was sitting for a French exam, I would try and wear something that I had bought in France for the exam. Authentic good luck would then come my way, n’est-ce pas?
To add to the French-ness of the evening, the easy-to-read-on-the-subway book in my bag was a comic-book style story about an American mother & daughter who live in Paris for 6 weeks in Jan/Feb 2007… full of hand-drawn doodles, funny commentaries on daily life in France, photos and of course food & wine!
Where am I going with this?
Yes, I’ve previously mentioned my experiences studying & living in France… A year in Lorraine. A semester in Paris. A year in Chambéry. But this January marks the 5th year that I was in Paris for a semester. And so far, for every day of 2012, I have thought about those 4 Parisian months. Lots of people love Paris… and lots of people don’t (Too dirty, not kind to English speakers, didn’t meet the hype I imagined, etc.).
But I lived there. Four months only, perhaps, but I had a neighbourhood. I bought groceries. I ran errands. In Paris.
If you are a fan of any of the following American tv shows, you may know that their dramatic endings involved (potentially) running off to Paris:
- Rachel Green lands a job with Louis Vuitton in Paris in the Friends finale
- Carrie Bradshaw battles between New York vs. Paris in the Sex and the City finale
- Jerry, George, Elaine & Kramer head to Paris for “one last hurrah” in the Seinfeld finale
Amongst others, I’m sure. City of romance, of lights, of history, and of baguettes!
A la semaine prochaine, amusez-vous bien mes amis! [Until next weekend, enjoy yourselves, my friends!]