Entries in m-dashing (35)

Monday
Jun232014

Here's how to deal with leaving Paris

#1. Don't write about it on your blog, because if you do, maybe then it means that you really did leave.

(Hi. So, I really did leave.)

I've been back from my three months in Paris for a few weeks now, and I think I've been avoiding M-Dashing because it feels real any time I write about something on my blog. But it is real: I am back on U.S. soil, back on NYC's gritty streets, and back to feeling like, "Okay, so what's next?"

While I suss all that out--because it's going to take some real time--I've got loads more to write about Paris, so expect additional posts coming up. I'd love to share more about what I learned, what I saw, and, ahem, what I ate. (Because heaven knows my waistline is still dealing with that last one. The Paris Plan #5 and #6 4-EVA, y'all.)

And speaking of The Paris Plan, I'm doing my best to incorporate those guidelines into life here in New York. It's not always easy. (#7 comes straight to mind, because, what do I use there instead? Something about embracing/not masking my own actual Southern accent within a sea of Northern ones?) (Oh Lord have mercy, we'll just discuss that later.) But I'll let you know how it goes.

Thanks to everyone who read along during my adventure. Thanks also to those who helped make my adventure so--I don't even know what adjective sums it up--memorable? Magical? Monumental? Whatever m-word it was, it was all a gift. All of it.

Here's to more adventures soon. Stay tuned.

Tuesday
Apr222014

5 Less-Touristy Places for Great Views of Paris


Forget views from the Eiffel Tower. (You can't see the famous iron structure from THAT view--and you know that's what you want!) Here are five places to catch great views of Paris, most of them for free.

1) Printemps. Trek to the cafe terrace on the 9th floor of the Beauté/Maison building of this department store and get ready to squeal like a little tiny baby girl. HOLY COW. (I mean, HOLY VACHE.) This is hands-down my favorite view. I recommend going on a stormy day. Because take a look at the above pano my iPhone took just before a storm a week or so ago. Beyond. 64 bd Haussmann, 75009 

2) Parc de Belleville. Go at sunset (duh, but still). At the top of the park is both a cool-looking boulangerie (I didn't stop in, but it smelled gorgeous) and a great cafe/bar where you can grab a drink and a bite for a decent price. So dreamy in the spring! 47 rue des Couronnes, 75011

3) Panthéon. Not the most dramatic view of the city, but it somehow makes you feel a little king-of-the-world-ish. Place du Panthéon, 75005

4) Centre Pompidou. I keep reading how beautiful the view is from the 5th floor of this modern-art museum. My girl Zovig is currently in town visiting, and she confirmed it for me after she spent a last-minute evening there. (It's sometimes open as late at 11pm.) On the must-do list! Place Georges-Pompidou, 75004

5) Le Parc de Saint Cloud. If you're feeling adventurous, hop a train and hit this park for a sprawling view from just outside the city. Bonus: tons of tree-lined paths and rolling meadows peppered with fountains and fancy regal architecture. Your Instagram followers will totally heart you for it. 92210 Saint-Cloud

The Paris Plan - Achieved Today: Rule #2. (I like this rule, y'all.)

Sunday
Apr062014

5 places to enter a croissant coma in Paris

Yeah. You just gained two pounds looking at these pics. Here's where to do it in person in Paris:

1. 134 RdT: When Sonal was in town, she spearheaded a croissant crawl, which should tell you a lot about why Sonal and I are friends. We found this award-winning pick to have crispier, flakier edges than most, with smooshy-soft insides. (Its photo is at the top of this post.) 134 Rue de Turenne, 75003

2. Boulangerie Julien à Paris: Oh, such a perfect crescent-shaped specimen! (Middle photo up there--check it. It's so pretty...doesn't it seem like someone should paint it, using, like, watercolors or something?) This was our favorite pick of the pack. Exactly what you want in your butter croissant--not TOO flakey, but flakey enough. 24 Rue Saint-Martin, 75004

3. Boulangerie L’Essentiel Mouffetard: You will have a hard time choosing just a croissant--everything is beautiful in this space. But you'll be glad you did. It would probably be perfect just out of the oven! (Now how do we figure out when that happens?) 2 Rue Mouffetard, 75005

4. Stohrer: Our neighborhood pastry shop, introduced to me by Nichole when I walked in our apartment for the first time: she welcomed me with the legendary store's blow-your-mind-OMG-you're-in-Paris tarte aux framboises. I've been there so many times since that the clerks now recognize me. (Oh, bonjour, yeah, moi again.) Their pitch-perfect chocolate croissant makes me smile a thousand smiles. Next on my list: their famous éclair. 51 Rue Montorgueil, 75002

5. Du Pain et des Idées: Disclaimer: I've actually not been here yet, but I keep reading more and more about this joint and am d-y-i-n-g to go. Check out their site--there seems to be some sort of rose croissant concoction and a green tea situation happening. And that means me + des Idées is also totally happening in the VERY near future. 34 rue Yves Toudic, 75010

 

As always, for restaurant recommendations, I visit Lost in Cheeseland and Paris by Mouth. I also often use the New Food Lover's Guide to Paris app--a steal at $4.99. Worth it!

The Paris Plan - Achieved Today: Rule #6, obviously.

Monday
Mar312014

The Left Bank at rest

It was a sleepy, spring-y Monday.

The Paris Plan - Achieved Today: Rules #1, 2, 4, 13.

P.S. Inspired by a suggestion from Kristin Appenbrink, I'm now including a short version of the Paris Plan in the sidebar on the right. Thanks, KApp!

Tuesday
Mar182014

The Paris Plan: 15 Rules for Living in a City of Light

Last week I mentioned that I put together a list of rules to live by while I'm in Paris. I am slightly nervous to share them--are they weird or obvious or stupid or too personal?--but these three months are all about living a little better and a little braver, so I'm sucking it up and placing them down below.

(It also makes it feel more real if I just put it out there, you know?)

My hope is these guidelines will inspire me to maximize my time here. And when that time is up, maybe they'll even help me shift the way I experience my everyday in Brooklyn.

Let me know if I've missed anything or if you have suggestions!

-The Paris Plan-

1. Create every day, whether it's via writing or taking photos. (Preferably both.)

2. There is Paris outside your window; make sure you don't stay inside too long. Be efficient and realistic, but don't miss out by overthinking your client work or by the inevitable urge to watch the "Game of Thrones" episodes you're missing back home. Winter is coming, but in this case, it can wait.

3. Listen better. Don't let iTunes substitute for the sounds of the city. When you're out, leave the ear buds at home. (Unless you're exercising.)

4. Exercise.

5. Eat. And eat and eat. This is France. Have the butter; try the cheese. Be the woman walking down the street with the fresh baguette.

6. Don't freak out if you gain 5 pounds.

7. Talk to someone in French once a day. Even if it's just to say good morning. Or hello, nice to meet you. Or "Please feed me croissants because I have committed to not freaking out if I gain 5 pounds."

8. Don't totally buy in to the stereotypical Paris fantasy. Live it. Smell it. Taste it. Appreciate what's real around you, and try not to get caught too often in the shadow of big tall towering things. Unless they are men.

9. Don't forget the men.

10. Leave the city on a regular basis. Find out if you miss it.

11. Know these numbers by heart: your passport, your Paris address and cross streets, your Paris phone number, your landlord's cell, emergency numbers.

12. Read literature about where you are. Understand why Hemingway called Paris "A Moveable Feast."

13. Wear the right shoes. Make sure they're comfortable. Walk like you know where you're going, even when you don't.

14. Embrace the unexpected. Because there will be speedbumps, and there will most certainly be cobblestones (and they're even harder to deal with if you aren't wearing the right shoes).

15. Listen, girl. Don't forget that sometimes you need to forget the rules.

 

Friday
Mar142014

Friday, finally

Wishing you a wonderful weekend from waaaaaaaay over here.