Daily Archives: September 18, 2013

Green man means RUN!

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Over the fortnight I have been in Paris I have been gobsmacked by the driving ability of the motorists. It gives a whole new meaning to the words “bumper bar” when you see them get in and out of car parks.

I had come to my conclusion that the Red man on the traffic light means. If you are arrogant and/or brave enough just go. and that the green man means RUN!

So I was very amused when I was reading the Paris chapter in Bill Bryson’s “Neither here, nor there”

He wrote this ( I hope I am  not breaking copyright laws but it just sums it up so well )

“This is what happens: You arrive at a square to find all the traffic stopped, but the pedestrian light is red and you know if you venture so much as a foot off the kerb all the cars will surge forward and turn you into a gooey crepe. So you wait. After a minute, a blind person comes along and crosses the cobbled plain without hesitating. Then a ninety year old lady in a motorized wheelchair trundles past and wobbles across the cobbles to the side of the square a quarter of a mile away.

You are uncomfortably aware that all the driver within 150 yards are sitting with moistened lips watching expectantly, so you pretend that you don’t really want to cross the street at all,that actually you’ve come here to look at this interesting fin-de-siècle lamppost. After another minute 150 pre-school children are herded across by their teachers, and then the blind man returns from the other direction with two bags of shopping. Finally the pedestrian light turns green and you step off the kerb and all the cars come charging at you.I don’t care how paranoid and irrational this sounds,but I know for a fact that the people of Paris want me dead”

It is an incredibly funny book well worth reading.

Thanks to Katha and Celia for suggesting it and the cyber world for having it available on kindle

Tuesday 17th September

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I slept really well so I woke up later than I had planned. I went straight up to Marche des Enfants Rouge to try and buy some tomato salad. They weren’t fully open yet but I was able to buy some. I strolled home and cooked some toast and had the salad on it like a bruschetta. It was well worth the wait! The tomatoes were so sweet. I will definitely be going back to get some more on another day. I had it for dinner as well so I spent about 6 euro on lunch and dinner.

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I had asked my nephew to suggest somewhere for me to go that day. He suggested the Musee de Rodin so I got the Metro to the other side of the Seine. I am really glad I went. It was beautiful and the grounds amazing. To have lived there back in the day must have been so grand. I got the audio guide and went on my way.

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This may just look like a bush but it sang the song of a SIren and when I put my ear to it , it cackled! ( no I am not insane they really sing)

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we strike this ^ pose at work a bit. ( especially Kula and Sid 😉 )

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This was an incredible sculpture titled Gossip it was made of Onyx and Brass it appeared like it was all made from one piece of stone.

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This reminded me of me saying a disbelieving “what?!”

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This is a sculpture that Rodin did over 37 years ( it was not completed). It is called the “Gates of Hell” there were telescopes to see the definition in some of the hell dwellers . If it wasn’t of something so dark and scary I would say it was beautiful. It was certainly spectacular!

The gift shop there was one of the better ones I have seen.The toilets were very clean and had an attendant.

I then headed off to the Musee D’Orsay, I had a museum passport for the day so I could join the shorter queue to get in. It is amazingly big and so so so crowded. The queue to get in to see Van Gogh’s work appeared to never end. I joined it for about 38 seconds and thought I would give that little section a miss. I am a lover of impressionist art so that floor was wonderful. The views from the windows were stunning. I also loved the European Art Nouveau furniture. I rather like petitions ( not the signing kind) I would love to own one. They made some fantastic ones in that era. I couldn’t take photos to show you 😦 .  It is another hot spot for pickpockets. I once again got out with all my valuables.

I was getting rather tired so I left to start my journey home. I got on a hop on hop off cruiser up the Seine. Which got me to wondering about how they made the walls that go into the river. So I will be googling that later.

I hopped off at Hotel De Ville and headed home. I will be sleeping well tonight. Any suggestions of what I should do tomorrow?  It has to be within Paris as I want to be in Montmarte by 6.30pm

Degustation at Auberge Nicolas Flamel

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Last night I went to a restaurant in Le Marais called Auberge Nicolas Flamel and had their 5 course degustation with accompanied wines.

It was very enjoyable and really quite reasonably priced. The restaurant is in one of the oldest “houses” remaining in Paris. It is named after one of it’s long gone owners named Nicolas Flamel. I didn’t take photos of the courses as I was “worried” that it would upset them. There must be all sorts of places to dispose of touristes intolérables in a 600 plus year old house.

the first course was a potato and crayfish ball with the nicest parmesan biscuit and a shot glass of squash “soup”. I think this was a dish they bring out to everyone and was not included in the 5 course degustation

The second was Foie Gras topped with strawberry gelatine with toast. ( just normal wholemeal bread- no crusts). It was the first time I had Foie Gras and it was very different to what I had expected. It was so smooth and delicious . I had read good things about this restaurants Foie Gras and was very keen to try it. 

Third course was scallops topped with salmon roe accompanied by a tiny bit of cauliflower cooked in tempura and a creme with basil. This was scrumptious.

Fourth course was a piece of Turbot on top of some butternut mash and a squash creme. I am not a big fan of fish. This did nothing to convert me. It was nice though.

Fifth course was a tiny bit of beef fillet with a celery puree , a sweet potato chip ( like a crisp) and a soya sauce gravy. The meat was so tender it didn’t need to be any bigger. I could have done with a bowl of sweet potato crisps/chips they were great.

Dessert was a hazelnut panna cotta on a plate with an almond cake topped with white and milk chocolate, a dollop of vanilla ice-cream and a gooseberry. Gooseberries are so yum. 

I didn’t write down any of the wines but they were all very palatable. The red was divine.

I went early so it was not too busy. I would like to go back. If you are staying in the area I think it is well worth a visit.