Friday, June 05, 2009

On France

What I miss about France now that I’m back in America, in no particular order:
1. Ubiquitous outdoor cafes
2. The French tradition of having a cold drink or coffee at said outdoor cafe around 4 or 5 p.m.
3. Good coffee or espresso anywhere you go


(my first cup of espresso in Paris a couple of hours after we stepped off the plane. Note how pathetically thankful I am for caffeine after being up nearly 24 hours and with a whole day of sightseeing ahead. Also note the bottles of liquor behind. Because in Paris...is it a bar? Is it a breakfast joint? It's both!)

4. Navigating the metro and people-watching on it
5. Helping drunk Americans navigate the metro (way to represent, guys!)
6. Buildings older than my home country
7. Sitting by the Seine at night, waving at tourist boats and watching the Eiffel Tower sparkle

8. Getting lost and finding cool places
9. The French! They're way friendlier than I was led to believe. Really, even the waiters (OK, most of them).

What I missed about America while I was in France, in no particular order:
1. Free refills
2. Everyone wears deodorant (It’s cheap, mes amis)
3. Bacon
4. Showerheads that are attached to the wall
5. Flipflops
6. Good customer service
7. Clothing stores open after 7 p.m.
8. Toilets with identifiable flushers


*On an unrelated note, there's still time to enter the book giveaway contest, and to freak us all out with your bizarre vampire name. Click here.*

9 comments:

writtenwyrdd said...

I'm glad you had a good time! I went several years ago and had the worst experience ever, finding the Parisians to vary between horrifyingly rude and very nice. I had one lady chew me out in French on the Metro, the gist being that I was rude effing idiot to try and speak her language badly, and oh I was fat so what was I doing in Paris being a fat American in her country. (I speak enough French to get the gist. I also speak with a Quebec accent and had used the word bouton for button, which in Parisian French is a big no no, I discovered.) *eye roll* I do not ever want to go back.

Anna Claire said...

Written, that majorly sucks. The woman obviously needed the large object stuck up her hiney removed. What's weird is that we get constantly told the French like it when we at least attempt to speak their language instead of pompously assuming everyone knows English.
JB and I never got yelled at, fortunately; just ignored or viewed with that very Parisian mixture of disdain and boredom.

cerrissa said...

bacon???? u sure? i'm pretty sure bacon fat and butter are used in most french entrees to great effect :) i totally agree with everything else! i really hated the showerhead thing, and i am missing the free refills where i'm at too :( but i suppose i do have the outdoor cafes and drunk people on the subway. it all equals out in the end. nowhere is perfect unfortunately, but paris comes close :)

Lenore said...

I know the bacon you are talking about. Big fat, crispy strips of bacon are just not available in Europe - only the little chunks.

I just got back from NYC and tried to have bacon at least once a day, ha!

Anna Claire said...

We only had bacon once and it was impossibly thin, mostly fat and very greasy. I like mine super-crispy and without so much fat. The first morning back in the states, JB and I went to breakfast at Cracker Barrel and I had bacon, eggs and biscuits. Yummmm. I don't eat like that every morning, but it hit the spot after the croissant and jam I'd been eating every. single. morning.

lotusgirl said...

So true! I completely missed the same things plus good peanut butter, BBQ sauce, and Mexican food. Ok. So they were all food items. Oh, and free toilets when you're out places.

But the French are wonderful--so much nicer than I was led to believe too, and it's hard to complain too much when there are melt in your mouth goodies everywhere.

Princess Emma said...

Ah, beautiful Paris. It's one of my favourite cities in the world. I've been there three times and I have yet to meet a rude Parisian.

Crimogenic said...

A trip to France is still on my list. For sure we're going next year. It's blows about what Written said about the bad experience on the train. My better half is French and has shared stories with me as to how rude some Parisians can be...

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