Stephanie is my sister. I got this note from her upon my arrival in Paris and subsequent day long search for internet cafe:
Monday, September 1, 2008
Steph: Wanting to make sure you made it ok and are liking the crazy little apartment?
Me: Bonjour! Jeeeeez I am only just now on email and NOT at the apartment! Charging the computer without blowing it up, weird French internet stuff driving me nuts -- finally found an internet cafe and when I walked in they are playing Madonna's Hard Candy, just like every radio station at home. Ahhh, was I expecting Edith Paif?
The apartment is awesome! In SUCH a nice area just off the Rue St. Honore so shops, the Louvre, metro stops, all of it right here. The stairs are a KILLER, 5th floor winding in a tight spiral up up up...but so worth it once there! The apartment is triangle shaped, so from the two sides with windows I peek out on Parisian life. On one side is maybe a fashion school? There are mannequins in the window and once in awhile the young 20-something students pour out onto the sidewalk to chain smoke and look cool (makes me aware I am totally dressed stupid. Whatever.). Out the other side of the apartment there are offices and I can see into peoples' apartments, so I imagine watching their lives as my version of a French soap opera for the next week or so. Cannot wait.
There is a Monoprix grocery right across the street from the apartment. I had pate and walnut bread from Poilane (OMG), and a bottle of champagne for dinner last night, with chocolate (Michel Cluizel) to finish! C'est magnifique! This is great because in my semi-jet lagged state I can eat at home when I'm hungry instead of waiting for "appropriate" lunch and dinner times -- allows me to avoid as much as possible being totally ignored and/or looked at with suspicion by waitstaff and/or regular French people who realize that no one worth their weight in escargot would approach a restaurant to eat prior to 8:30pm. Nothing more entertaining when it's 55 degrees and windy than a solo American in a t-shirt and flip flops barging into an empty restaurant at 6pm ready for her aperitif, and hoping to not order something like "sardines for 8" with her poor command of high school French (yes, I did! On my last trip, the waiters got a huge kick out of it, I got a gigantic bowl of sardines swimming in a gallon of olive oil). Yes, thank goodness for the Monoprix.
Btw, I tried to wear my cute new black patent flats today but after less than an hour I had to go all the way home (and up the 5 floors) to put on flip flops. What a loser. Definitely will wear boots tomorrow, regardless of weather, in attempt to feel more confidently dressed, and make it all day without returning to the apartment for wardrobe change!
Love you and cannot WAIT for you to be here!!!