Life in Paris – museums, parks, food, and more… (March 2015-May 2015)

In March, I finally signed up for the Velib’ pass – let the biking commence!

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I also visited the Musée du Louvre with my class!

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That place is massive!  I walked around for hours, but I didn’t see everything.  It is definitely wise to pick out a few sections that you may want to see and then call it good after that (or else you will face information overload).

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I was walking home from class one day and I noticed that they were getting ready to block off the road at Pont Alexandre III.  I noticed that there was a lot of people right in front of Les Invalides and also a camera crew right next to the bridge.  I decided that I would just wait around to see what was going on.  It turned out that the King of Spain was in town for a visit.  Check out his entourage!

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Is the Easter candy on the shelves in Paris creepy or is it just me???

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At the end of March, the Citizen K magazine came out.  Andrew and I were featured in the magazine due to our ties to California (the article wanted to show each chef with their spouse).  The information printed was mostly accurate, but I think some of the things we said were lost in translation – but not enough to be that big of a deal.  I think that the overall process was pretty neat – I was nervous for nothing.  One thing that I did figure out by going through this, is that I don’t think I am cut out to be a model (I’d rather be behind the camera), but I was thankful for the experience.

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On the first Sunday in April, we visited the Musée Rodin.  It was Andrew’s first time and my second.

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We also walked on the grounds at Les Invalides.

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“Forbidden Lawn” – ha ha.

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I had been busy preparing for Andrew’s parents arrival in May.  I was in the process of booking tickets for different attractions and during one booking I made a mistake and booked tickets to Palais Garnier for April 6th instead of May 17th!  It was Easter weekend so I was unable to contact someone about changing the tickets.  I decided that I would just ask a friend (thank you Martin for coming) to come along and check it out.  The Palais Garnier Opera house is absolutely stunning!  I want to come back to check out a ballet and/or opera at some point in the future.

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Pictures of the auditorium, the Phantom’s box, and the Grand Foyer.

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In the past a lot of the opera houses burnt down because they were lit by candlelight.  This opera house used gas lighting.  The salamander on the staircase is placed there symbolically because it is the only animal able to pass through the fire.

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My favorite room was the Lunar Room.

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On the balcony out front!

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I met a friend one day for a picnic at Jardin du Luxembourg.

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Everyone loves free ice cream!  Thank you Ben & Jerry’s!  Waiting for 50 minutes in line was worth it 🙂

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There are food trucks in Paris, so we decided that it was about time for us to try them out.

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We tried Le Camion Qui Fume.  Their line was by far the longest – I felt a little bad for the other trucks.  The food at Le Camion Qui Fume was okay, the burger tasted good, but the fries weren’t that great.  I just think about all of the other food trucks that we’ve tried in the U.S. and I don’t think this one would be able to compete with them on the same level.  It is definitely one of the most (if not the most) popular truck in Paris, but I’m not sure what their competition is like because I haven’t tried any of the other trucks yet.

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My friend, Katia, wanted to learn how to make a few dishes, so I asked Andrew if he would be interested in helping out.  We all had a fun time cooking together!

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And the food turned out great!  We had Eggs Benedict, Shrimp Gumbo, and Apple Crumble.  I made the Apple Crumble!

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Paris is beautiful in the springtime.

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Tour Eiffel - April 20, 2015

Clown…

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May 1st is a holiday in France and a lot of the stores/businesses are closed (with the exception of tourist spots).  They refer to the day as le 1er mai (le premiere mai).  They give “du muguet” to their loved ones on this day for good luck.  “Du muguet” translates to lily of the valley in English.  This tradition dates back to May 1, 1561, when King Charles IX of France received a lily of the valley as a lucky charm.  He decided to offer a lily of the valley each year to the ladies of the court.  At the beginning of the 20th century, it became custom to give a sprig of lily of the valley, a symbol of springtime, on May 1.  Thank you, Wikipedia!

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On the first Sunday in May, Andrew and I visited Musée d’Orsay.  It was raining that day and the line was super long!  However, Andrew knew a guy that worked there, so we were able to skip the line.  Merci beaucoup!!

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Andrew fixes fun meals 🙂

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I have been meeting with a girl from Mongolia to help her improve her English skills.  She invited us to a bar to listen to her friend play and sing traditional Mongolian music.  The music was beautiful and interesting.

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I met Katia the second weekend in May for a walk through Bois de Vincennes.  But before our walk we had to have a café gourmand.

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The park is so beautiful!

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I loved this carving on the tree.

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We walked all the way to the Château de Vincennes.

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On Tuesday (May 12th), Hasnaa from my French class prepared the staff meal at school.  Since we were in class with her, we were allowed to come to the lunch as well for a small fee of 5 euros.  Hasnaa prepared a Moroccan/Syrian style lunch.  It was so good and worth way more than 5 euros!

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The following day I received my new Titre de Sejour at the Préfecture!  I’m cleared to stay here until March 2017!

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Stay tuned for the arrival of Andrew’s parents in Paris…

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