Paris for breakfast?
You know why I love blogging the most? Cause you can see how you are changing and it is not about the writing style, better punctuation or more advanced vocabulary. It is about seeing how the tastes and priorities might migrate, you see how the society influences your opinion and finally agree that people make the place, not the place itself.
Now the time came for Paris. It was my third time in the city of love and the first time I finally found what I was always promised – the French vibe in the intercultural society with mess and chaos on the streets, with love and joy in parks, with dances and songs at the riverside, and with smiles and food all around.
After a short visit to the touristic fairytale town of Colmar, I rushed for the train to Paris. With ICE, you need only 2 hours to reach Paris from Strasbourg and you enjoy the wind on 300 km/h speed and the ears got popped. I have to pay tribute to the EU train connections – most of the times it is faster than taking the plane, but not cheaper.
Fatima – a girl I spent my last summer months in Brazil with met me at the railway station holding a fresh croissant! Is there a better welcome to Paris?
– I know how much you love the French croissants. Here you go!
We got to the apartment where I stayed with two of my friends. Kate is one of them who moved to Paris 1,5 year ago for work so she knew hidden cafes and best ice-cream places.
I loved the mood of the city. I totally got into the flow of the Parisian life. People rushing in the city center, chilling by Siena, or buying falafels at Le Marais. The chaos creates the harmony. I believe, in order to feel every country a week or a month is not enough – you have to see it under the snow and during the rain so to understand what people actually do when the city gets gloomy. But my third time was definitely a lucky one.
We spent the evening at the local bar nearby the Champs-Élysées enjoying the last sun rays and the French language all around. I decided not to visit any popular sightseeing points anymore and just try to get lost somewhere between 3rd, 4th districts, and St. Michael. We were slowly drinking latte here and there, getting some nice bakery stuff with cream, or berries inside. This is something Nuremberg lacks – the coffee culture, an idea of chilling at cozy cafes, trying alternatively brewed coffee and chatting at the window sills for hours. Ukraine is not an exception, so it inspires lots of young creators to set small businesses and run coffee shops with extraordinary chai latte flavors.
And this is what has changed!
I looked at Paris and I loved it for being so messy and crowded
I loved it for giving the roof to all nations, all races, all religions. There is something for you and me.
I met Veneur, a Haitian who moved to the city years ago and managed to become a local. We met on Couchsurfing and couple hours later we were driving his motorcycle to the Jardin Tino-Rossi. There are multiple semicircles a la open-air theatres, where all the dancers perform. Each of the semicircles has different kind of music from Irish folk to jazz and bachata. Anyone is free to show off his skills. Some sing to the rhythm of the music creating one beautiful piece of art. Definitely Must Visit!
As the sun went down, Veneur and I grabbed a pizza to watch the sunset at Saint-Michel Bridge. Just across the street, the musicians were giving a small concert with nice classical music. “City of love” – this is what they say, no?
Latin culture has found its fun and freeing way to penetrate into Monnaie and Sorbonne districts so to offer small bars during the night. We accidentally ran into one of them named “Latin Corner” on Rue de la Huchette. Once we entered we recognized the same people from the open-air salsa place the one we had visited before. They all were dancing synchronously reggaeton and turning the girls around, bringing them up and down.
If TOUR EIFFEL IS BORING FOR YOU:
- Shakespeare & Company – an old bookstore with thousands of amazing books.
- Pont Saint-Michel – amazing view of the sunset from the bridge.
- Arènes, Jardin Tino-Rossi – dancing performances by the river every evening.
- Monnaie – district of small restaurants, cozy cafes, bars and pubs.
- 3rd, 4th arrondissements – tiny hipster streets, best ice-cream, smelly coffee, and falafel!
- Musée d’Orsay – free for students and must visit for every creative soul.