|The photos'll be extra random this week|
I turned 31 on Monday. I think it’s the first time I’ve spent a birthday overseas. We passed a sweet night with a few good friends, sitting on our floor eating delicious cheese and saucisson . Last night Monique took me out to a delicious dinner at a lovely little cafe in the 2nd. The place was so cute, a narrow space full of dusty mobiles – little planets and farm animals dangling in the summer heat. The food was delicious, the staff were obnoxious (I keep wondering what it is that allows people who so obviously hate dealing with the public work in a service industry? Is it because it’s some sort of expectation now – that foreigners like to be treated like scum by French waiters? Is it because the constant stream of brash travellers crushes anyone’s sense of politeness into fine dust? It’s not really important, but I’d still like to tell some of these people to get over themselves). Anyway, it was a great night and I’d happily go back.
Earlier in the day, Kate took us around to see some of the beautiful arcades in the area. Such wonderful spaces. Some of them are run down, dusty and gorgeous – faded prints pinned to the crumbling walls; (seemingly) forgotten shops with window displays of dusty, faded objects priced in francs; the glass ceilings grotty; the passage of time slowed; the noise of traffic muffled. And some of these arcades have been restored – fresh cream paint, gleaming glass ceilings letting in the warm sunlight, all lights working; no chips in the neat, shining black and white tiled floors; the shops all manned and selling wonderful little arty curios: ranging from objet-d’art from India to hand knitted little this’n’thats.
A friend took us to a gorgeous little sangria bar one night, it could’ve been there since the invention of sangria, really – ceilings an inch above your head, walls yellowed by years of drinking and smoking, pale prints of old French musicals on the walls, a large and balding bartender who wore his little round sunglasses proudly in the darkness, plonking heavy ceramic pitchers of spiced wine onto the little scratched tables.
|Historical photo of the week.|