Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Bonjour tout le monde. Sunday morning the 16th (sept), we got up early for breakfast in the huge hotel bkfst room. Bkfst is offered from 0700 to 1000. The layout was well done; offering delicious coffee, hot milk, fresh juice, boiled eggs, both done and available to cook yourself, scrambled eggs, sumptuous and scrumptious croissants, both ordinaire and chocolate, prunes, yogurt, pears and peaches. All in all very nice, but @ 40 € a little steep to my thinking.

Off to find "Shakespeare and Company" so as to know where to meet Tara and David. This was a good choice on many fronts; first off, the restaurant where we were going to dine Wed. evening, "Le Petit Châtelet" is right next door. And secondly; my desire to visit this particular and famous English language bookstore.

First order of business was to obtain some metro billets (tickets). Descending into the bowels of the Paris metro system at station; St. Sebastien Froissart I attempted to purchase a "Carte Orange", but many, if not all, of the metro automated ticket dispensers refused to accept American or Canadian credit cards. I found this out from the information agent located nearby where I proceeded for info (duh.) The man was very curtious and helpful and as well as directions, provided me with a readable metro map; (read as:LARGE enough for a blind man to read.)

((((On our first trip to France, our son taught us how to read the metro map and I still retained those lessons. However my eyesight must have deteriorated since then because I could no longer read the map he had given me then. :) )))))

I purchased 10 metro tickets (Carnet) for 11€ 20. We took line * to Strausbourg St. Denis, changed to line #4 for St. Michele Notre Dame.

We ambled around the "Latin Quarter," found the restaurant and bookstore (easy to find!) Strolled through the area St. Germaine de Pres, circumnavigated the "Sorbonne" and surrounds...Stopped for a Café express and a café creme. Moseyed Blvd St. Germain for a church which Liya R. had told us was even more spectacular than the "King's Chapel,"
But to no avail for if she gave us the name of the church, we had forgotten it. Continuing to wander and roam, we purchased some carte postals form various shops and wended our way back to La place Saint-Michel.

Had lunch at a cafe Roy in the Latin quarter. This meal/experience was enhanced by observing the café's multilingual hawker. His job was to entice passers-by to stop and eat at his establishment. He told us he is fluent in 12 languages, and after watching him ply his wiles I'm a believer. It's not that I actually heard him speak all twelve languages but he did use 4 0r5, and the rapidity with which he

switched between languages of the many potential patrons so easily it was as though he was speaking a single language.

after lunch I returned to Shakespeare and Company to browse and perhaps acquire a book and D. went next door to have a café creme and to write some postcards.
D. did have café, but people watched instead of doing postcards; Like, what else do you do in Paris except people watch? It's the number on pass time for café patrons. ;)

At the bookstore I picked up two used Thomas Hardy novels and a book of poetry by Ezra Pound, but in the end, put them all back ( yeh, ok..understand? :( ) in favor of "The Assassins Cloak" an anthology of the world's greatest diarists- edited by Irene and Alan Taylor. At the time of purchase the clerk asked if I wanted the book stamped? I said oui and this is what I got.

cafe postcard photo by J. M. Sabat

Metro back to hotel via Cité. Stopped at an épicerie just around the corner from Bistro Amelot to buy yogurt, bananas, OJ, for tomorrow's bkfst since we depart at 0700 for a day trip to Belgium.

Stayed tuned... don't touch that dial! .... You won't want to miss tomorrow's episode.


Blogger Voix said...

Quel voyage!

Hope you enjoy every minute.

12:59 PM  
Blogger Churlita said...

What wonderful photos you took. it's so much fun to follow you through your journey.

5:09 PM  
Blogger PEA said...

Oooh la la! Quelle merveilleuse journee!! I am so enjoying reading about your time in France...I get so turned around, I just know I would get lost on my first day there! lol Love the stamp that you got on your book!! Isn't the architecture magnificent over there, wonderful!! xox

6:31 PM  
Anonymous Neil said...

I have a feeling that you like to travel like I do -- avoiding some of the tourist traps, and focusing on your true loves -- good food and exotic book finds.

6:39 PM  
Blogger Lee said...

Another great post, Rel...with equally great pics attached. :)

12:18 AM  
Anonymous Kat said...

Wonderful Rel! I feel like I'm right there in Paris with you.

1:06 PM  
Blogger Rethabile said...

Glad all this went well. Best.

12:23 PM  

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