Day 6, Saturday.
Came back into Paris Saturday but got a late start, didn’t get into town until close to noon. Dropped our stuff at our hotel, walked around the area briefly. We were staying in the 18th, in Montmart. On one hand it was just amazing to be there, thinking of the rich history of artists, authors, musicians in the area felt like we were treading on precious ground. Not holy ground for sure though, the area is a venerable sex pit. Jeremy and I visited the outside of Le Moulin Rouge and read about the history there- reminded me of Vegas really. Actually, it was far classier than the majority of the establishments in the area and though it wouldn’t be my thing it looks like it is just a vegas style show, or at least, that is what it is now. The prices of the tickets and, well, a lack of interest excluded us from learning more on a first hand experience. As the excitement of the history of the area wore off we really began to see what it is now and probably what it has been for a very long time. Exploring more and more around the area we grew increasingly grieved by the hold the sex industry has on the area and I finally found myself on the side of the street crying. Moved to tears by how these women involved in the sex industry are missing so much by believing that the best way for them to make a living is to sell themselves for the pleasures of others. What worth do they see in themselves? If not right now, how about years later when their bodies will fail them as sources of income? Nobody pretends that this is love, nobody needs to but the chasm of disconnect between sharing one’s body with another person and true intimacy has a lasting effect. I wanted so desperately to tell them that they are worth more than that. These are somebody’s sisters, somebody’s daughters and my heart aches for them all. I have no idea how this fits into our desire to be artists and ministers in Paris but somehow I feel we are supposed to reach out to the hurt here. Yeah, don’t exactly know what that means yet.
We headed from the 18th to the 20th to met Steve at Pere lachaise but it was closed due to high winds. This is another area we love and would be a great neighborhood for our family. We sat and shared coffee and crepes at a cafe to wait out the wind and rain but ended up deciding to give up on seeing Pere Lachaise for now. Oscar Wilde will just have to wait. He, and so many others, aren’t going anywhere anyway.
So we decided to go ahead and split up to get ready for dinner to celebrate Steve’s birthday. What an amazing meal. Steve and Pete had made reservations at Violon D'Ingres and the food was blow me over amazing. The food here in France deserves it’s own post, in fact, just about every meal deserves it’s own post but I doubt that will happen so I’ll share in as brief of detail as possible the wonders of this meal. Pumpkin Soup for starters for me with pieces of some kind of soft cheese, roasted chestnuts, crumbles of croutons and greens. That could have been my whole meal and I would have been happy. Instead, they brought me some duck that was... the best duck I have ever tasted in my life. Ever. Yeah, lame description but I really don’t know how to describe it except to add that there was this caramel-like sauce that just made the most perfectly roasted duck I’ve ever eaten even better. I’m not making this up. Oh, I left out the bread and puff cheese pastries before the soup even, those were amazing too. To finish I had a souffle dessert that they dressed in a salted caramel sauce that was unlike anything I’ve ever had. I kind of go into la-la land just thinking about that meal. Delicious. Walking back to metro after dinner we saw the Eiffel Tower in full sparkle glory. Now I understand why they have those tacky little Eiffel Towers with glitter or sparkly stones all over, it actually does look like that at night.
When we got back to our metro stop and the red windmill was turning and the night life bustling. It felt less charming though the streets up a bit from the main drag were also busy with all the shops open including grocers, fromagarie, etc. That made me want to stop and buy food to cook our own meal except that I could barely walk, I was so full from dinner. The hotel was clean but a little shabby though for the price we weren’t surprised. It seemed quiet but we had an odd night anyway, very hot and the noise kept Jeremy up though I slept through everything but being hot and having tummy issues.
I'm still behind, blog posts for the last few days are in progress, I'll post them when I can!