Friday, May 13, 2011

Fondue and Sacre Coeur


     Well, I am in Paris. It was my second day today. Do you know what I did yesterday? I ate lots of bread and cheese. Then, for dinner, I ate oysters. (I mean, we did stuff in the middle too, I’m just giving you highlights here.) We were staying at AB’s house and her father got us fresh oysters, which we learned to open with oyster knives! We ate them just plain or with a squeeze of lemon. Do you know how hard it is not to litter this post with exclamation points? Do you know how delicious fresh oysters with three different types of pasta (yes, three- arrabiata, pesto, pesto rosa) and fresh salad with actually Flavorful veggies and many things including grapefruit tastes? Place many exclamation points after the adjective you think of it and then put it here.

     Onwards, what did I do today? Wait, before I keep barreling forwards, I just realized I haven’t introduced you to anyone: I am in France with CV (stressed friend from Montreal I sent care package to?), and his two friends he goes to school with (AB and AGD), and AB’s friend whose initials I do not know so I cannot give her a name yet. Right now, as you know, we are in Paris. OK, now I can continue. So, today: Woke up, and had a crepe with Nutella. (After so many years! Back in Paris and eating a crepe!!! Anyway…) Had a baguette with jambon (ham) for lunch (with everyone – I’m not just wandering  around eating food alone here….). Walked around Le Marais, which is a great neighborhood full of little vintage boutiques and boulangeries and really cool art galleries, one of which we walked into. After a short break in the middle of the day, we then wandered out again. To where? To Sacre Coeur.

     Sacre Coeur is one of those places I have always wanted to experience. It has just always seemed so grand and gorgeous to me. And it is beautiful. We wandered up the hill to where it is, and saw the most amazing views of Paris. I have nothing to say, look at the pictures. But, then we went into the basilique itself. Being in churches brings me so much peace. And old cathedrals like Sacre Coeur have so many beautiful statues and mosaics, its awe inspiring. It’s great to walk out of somewhere like that and be faced with a beautiful view of the world as well. I take a contented sigh in contemplation of it all.
What did we do after so much beauty? 

     We wandered around the area, which is all tiny cobbled streets winding down the hill. We saw the Artist’s Square where there’s all the portrait painters, and passed all the touristy restaurants with waiters wearing cutesy red berets. But, we were on a quest. To find a fondue restaurant that AB’s friend (which makes me sound as though I don’t know her name, ew, but she knows I do…) had once been to. After much searching and asking at the tourist office, it was found! And it was awesome.

     It was a set menu: A plate of appetizers (olives, bologna, salami, red-sliced things that looked like pepperoni, cheese, pickles, and spicy potato) and then the choice between cheese fondue or hot oil in which to cook raw meat and potatoes (i.e. fondue bourguignonne). We got both. The meat fondue came with four different types of sauces, something like a béarnaise, something mustardy, something ketchup, and something good and creamy which I can’t put a name to. Do you know how our dinner was? It was an experience. It made us all very full of bread and cheese. Ooey gooey awesomely delicious cheese. I ate a lot of fried up beef with the béarnaise-y sauce. SO GOOD. And just when you think you have eaten enough, CV reminds one of the crusty cheese that forms on the bottom of the fondue pot. I have run out of appropriate words for the meal. Good food in France. It just never ends. I could keep on going forever as well, but there will be other things to tell soon enough. Enjoy my little bit of Paris for now and see you soon! 


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