Passport to Paris



Don't I already sound Parisian? I'm working on it.

Here I am, two days into my summer study abroad program in Paris. I still have not fathomed that I'm actually in this overwhelmingly stunning city. Besides the fact that it's unacceptable to smile or glance at strangers for longer than one second, I think I'm going to love it here.

Hannah and I had a rather dramatic entrance into Europe involving lost luggage, a stubborn cab driver and a two-hour adventure to find each other in airport terminals that somehow turned out to be 2 miles apart. We finally embraced with tears and smiles on Sunday morning and arrived at our dorm in utter relief.

Our first meal instantly changed the mood and helped us ignore jet lag for a few hours. We wandered around our neighborhood, which was surprisingly not touristy and full of Parisians, both young and old. Passing bakeries and cafés left and right, I couldn't stop smiling. I even smiled and waved at a bus driver, which was apparently a weird and wrong move.

The street has a gorgeous Plaza, as you see above. The architecture in this city is gorgeous...

We ended up at a small café, Au Metro, and took a seat on the gorgeous patio. The weather is perfect in the afternoon - mid 60s and sunshine.

The waitress was shocked we did not want wine - I'd fall asleep instantly if I had a glass - but she was sensitive and kind about our complete lack of French language knowledge. We both ordered the Salad Nordique with smoked salmon, crab, shrimp, avocado and asparagus. The vinaigrette had a hint of horseradish that complimented the seafood well. Bread and freshly whipped butter accompanied the salads. I was a happy camper.

Our group of almost 30 girls - and two guys - was lured into a touristy restaurant in the Latin Quarter near Notre Dame for our first dinner together. I wasn't too pleased with the basic tomato salad and spaghetti with tomato sauce, but Hannah and I split a four course meal for only 12 euros! A pretty good bargain, if you ask, I'd rather save my money for pastries any way.
I just arrived home from the Champs Elysées district (fashion heaven) and am preparing for a bus tour of Paris (Eiffel Tower, Louvre, Notre Dame, etc.), so look out very soon for a post with some breathtaking photos and a recap of our "pique-nique" in our neighborhood park. Xoxo.