* All Paris posts will be edited later Edited November 12, 2014
Folks, today was a really good day. Not that the other ones weren’t, but I feel really really happy today. Fist of all, I made it to breakfast at Holybelly. Check this baby out:
If you like your maple syrup on the side, this is not for you. If you like your Bourbon butter on the side, this is not for you. This is the most perfect breakfast I have ever had. No joke. Why is it perfect? Though it looks like it’s swimming in syrup, the pancakes don’t get soggy after absorbing and in the end it was the perfect amount. Look at the proportion of the eggs against the pancakes. I’m a very methodical pancake eater. I often cut them in wedges instead of just cutting willy nilly. So for me, every bite was the perfect bite, because you always get a piece of pancake with a piece of egg and some syrup. The flavors were so spot on that nothing was too greasy or too sweet. Perfect. And the place is owned by expats, so it’s English friendly and (allegedly) makes some of the best cups of coffee in Paris. Their buzz is far and wide, even though they just celebrated their first anniversary. I got there three minutes before they opened and the line was eight people deep already. If I had to wait in line, this would have been totes worth it. Not a bad start to the day, I say.
Next up, Opera Garnier. Being a theatre nerd, I want to eventually visit all the famous/cool stages of the world. Opera Garnier offers English guided tours on weekends and Wednesdays (I think). I don’t know if all the guides are as good as the one I had, so that made for an excellent tour. She was clearly not just reciting from a script, but is actually very knowledgeable about the history of the building. She was very clear and projected her voice well, had a great sense of humor and answered additional questions with ease. The building is amazing. Outside and inside. But my favorite part has got to be the house and stage. We were lucky to be able to go in the house, it’s not always the case depending on what the production people are doing. They were clearly in the middle of loading in and preparing for tech. Some of the fly things were lowered and saw some set pieces in the wings. Also saw some tech tables in the house. I just really had a nerd moment while in there. They say that the stage plus backstage is so huge, it can house the Arc de Triomphe. I mean, what? Hugeness! For me, this became the coolest thing ever in Paris in that moment.
I tried to go shopping a bit after, but the malls were closed? I guess it’s a Sunday, but it seemed odd. Oh well. A lot of things are closed on Sunday in Paris, so I’m not too too surprised. Next I stopped by the Rodin Museum. So cool! It started to rain at this point, so the atmosphere in the garden was super somber. It felt like that anyway. Done with that, I had a bit of time so I decided to walk over to Champ de Mars to get a picture of the Eiffel Tower. Since my phone life is unreliable, I always have very detailed instructions written out before I leave the hotel for the day. Even with that, I still manage to get lost several times a day. So off I went, and eventually I missed some kind of roundabout turn, but still arrived all the same. I took my pictures and then off I went to find the metro to get back. Got lost a bit again and basically doubled my journey. Oh well.
I just sat down with a pastry at the Rodin museum cafe for ‘lunch’ because I knew I had an interesting dinner ahead of me. I read about Jim Hynes’ Sunday suppers here . I started reading other people’s experience and thought, why not? So I trekked out there to the 14th and had dinner at a stranger’s house with about 40 other strangers. I’m rarely that person that comes up to someone and strikes a conversation, but a lot of people were in the same boat with me (some others were regulars) so everyone sort of wanted to meet everyone else. I spent most of the night talking to three girls from Chicago who are country hopping a bit through Europe. I just had the nicest time and found three new friends. It’s a very interesting way to meet people from all over the world. I met a pianist from San Francisco who comes to Paris every October for fun, a couple planning their wedding and renovating their new house at the same time, etc. I think it’s good to get out of my comfort zone every now and then, and this time it totally paid off. I’d say go for it if you are ever in Paris. You’ll at least have a very interesting time.
So, that’s it for today. Tomorrow more adventures await. Bon Nuit!
A selection of the bajillion pictures I took at the Opera Garnier:
Stuff at the Rodin museum: