07 August 2011

Welcome back to Pah-ree

Ah, Paris.  The City of Looooove.  The City of Light. My city.

A certain friend of mine will undoubtedly abhor the fact that I call it my city, but when you live there long enough to get a regular babysitting job, to make friends with the florist down the street, and to know exactly which metro stations smell like urine and which smell like day-old croissants, it can be your city too.

I wanted to give Matt the real deal French cultural experience....So we stayed in a ghetto suburb south of Paris that is predominantly inhabited by Asians.  What?!  It was cheap!  The directions to this obscure place were as follows (I kid you not):  "Go to Villejuif metro station.  Take exit Maxime Giorki.  Walk 60 steps straight.  Turn left down a narrow alley called Dupont, but it may not be clearly marked.  Turn right.  Walk several blocks until you see a Japanese restaurant.  Turn left and walk until you get to a row of parking garages.  Turn right and go down another alley.  Our hostel is across the street."  I want to know what made these people think they could run a hostel in the first place.  Somehow they had the foresight that they would be patronized by ultra cheapskates like myself who are willing to cut corners on housing when it means you'll have extra cash for good food.  And believe me, Paris has good food.

Upon our arrival, the petite Korean owner enthusiastically informed us that "da loo loo is free todayyy!"  The what?  "Da loo loo!"  Stumped, I looked to the backpacker sitting nearby and he translated.  "She means the Louvre."  Ooooh right.  Da loo loo.  Got it.  "And der are flyworks at Eiffel Tar-wer!"

Turns out we were conveniently in Paris for Bastille Day.  Hurrah for independence!  So, as our hostess so clearly stated, the city was celebrating with a firework show at the Eiffel Tower.  And free entrance to the Louvre.  I convinced my brother to skip out on the Louvre (Mona Lisa is probably # 2 on the list of The World's Biggest Disappointments.  The Sham-Wow is #1), and we did our own celebrating with a gastronomical tour of all my favorite, cheap, questionable food joints.  Kebabs, crepes, gelatto, pastries, bread in any form...Everything that is terrible for the body but vital for the soul.

Oh-so-good to be back.

   Double fistin' it at Place St-Michel.  Baguette panini and a crepe.

Matt's first kebab

Da Loo Loo

Versaille Palace

                                                          My old apartment.  Haunted grounds.


  1. did you see your beloved madame who lives in that apartment? you should have seen if she was home--she seems like a great lady!
    also you know why i "abhor" the use of referring to paris as anyone's city, right? (paris, chisinau...any of those cities thanks to a certain someone)

  2. i was hoping and praying that i would run into her, but sadly no.