“I am so glad that I spoke in bad French”

September 15, 2009

Ahhh Paris! The gardens, the buildings, the shopping, and the food! Can one place really be this lovely?

I had in short a fantastic day yesterday. I had asian food for lunch (Vietnamese, Chinese, sushi, and other “asian” things all in one restaurant-it was interesting!) with my usual group, and afterward Andy and I went to the Jardin du Luxembourg to enjoy the sun and wait for our class. I have decided that the Jardin du Luxembourg is far superior to the Tuileries. There are more flowers and fewer dust storms, and it’s much closer to where I live and study! Not to mention that you can actually sit on some of the lawns and walk very very close to the beautiful Palais du Luxembourg which houses the French Senate! The day was still sunny at this point, and the sky was blue, and there were a surprising number of flowers blooming for mid September. I don’t want this blog to become an annotated photo album, but I can’t help it. What I do is mostly sight see, and that involves a lot of beautiful things, which I cannot help but photograph.

French Senate Building

French Senate Building

Me and Andy sitting on the edge of a fountain

Me and Andy sitting on the edge of a fountain

I also love the garden because there are little green chairs everywhere, that people carry to wherever so they can relax. Common uses include sitting in one while using a second for a leg rest, playing chess with your friend on a small table, feeding pigeons, sleeping, and keeping your purse/coat off of the ground. The French are unapologetic if there are no chairs and each French person has two-it’s fabulous, and so different from America! However, because it was a Monday there were plenty of chairs, and Andy and I sat down and enjoyed the weather. Until a really smelly man sat down next to us!

The view from my chair

The view from my chair

Perfect sky

Perfect sky

We walked around after that, bought ice cream, and took pictures of various things. There was some sort of filming going on in one spot, we thought it might be for a commerical? And I also saw the Pigeon Lady. One sad thing about Paris is the number of mentally ill homeless people. There are a lot of people who beg on the street, but there are also a lot of people who wander around talking or shouting to themselves or people who just aren’t there. It is amazing to me that these people somehow slipped through the cracks of even the French government, but it obvously happens. I took a photo of the Pigeon Lady because I liked that she was caring for creatures that most other Parisians passionately detest. She was also completely unafraid of them.

IMG_2757

I don’t want this post to be sad, so I will now show you a fabulous photo taken just minutes before of a gentleman and his dog. I have noticed that Parisians have lots of small dogs, and that they frequently carry them. I am not sure why, but this made for a lovely photograph!

Note that there is a certain regal resemblance

Note that there is a certain regal resemblance

I also took a photograph of a statue of St. Genevieve for Grandma.

Patron Saint of Paris

Patron Saint of Paris

I had an orientation in the afternoon which was largely confusing, but I don’t think that my Sorbonne classes start until the beginning of October, so lucky me! I do start my SBC courses next Monday though, but I am actually excited about them! After my orientation I dropped off my second suitcase, put on warmer clothes, and headed out to meet some friends at the enormous Galeries Lafayettes. It is a large department store full of stunning clothing from the highest end designers, so it is also ridiculously expensive. However I am glad that I saw it, especially because it has the most gorgeous ceiling!

Galleries Lafayette

Galleries Lafayette

I don’t know what it is about the French and their ceilings, but someone should write a book about them! Maybe it’s a good idea for my Honor’s Thesis…

And now for the best part of my day. Caroline, Aisha and I were starving, and so at Caroline’s suggestion we went to X to get some pastries. I cannot put up the real name of where we got them, because our silence was requested, thus I am telling you but leaving out the important details. Caroline asked for a pastry, but it was the end of the day, and she noticed that they were throwing away any unbought pastries. She said something in French and next thing you know they store keepers are shoving all of these fabulous pastries into our hands for FREE!  We couldn’t believe our good luck! They knew we were American and they told us to never think that French people were mean. I took a picture of all the loot and then we happily gorged ourselves on free pastry all the way to the metro!

I had to blur out the name of the bakery

I had to blur out the name of the bakery

It was yet another successful day in Paris, though coming home to a huge dinner with a stomach full of pastry meant I didn’t sleep well at all! But it was worth it, and I’d do it again! And as Caroline noted, for once our horrible French was a good thing! A bientôt!

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2 Responses to ““I am so glad that I spoke in bad French””

  1. mom said

    Oh I wish I were there!!! Love, Mom 🙂

  2. Aunt Terri said

    Another reason to visit Paris.. the fresh and free pastries! Yum Victoria, I’m jealous.

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