Up and About in Paris and London
Paris and London. Last month I joined my cousin Mariana for part of her concert tour in Europe. When not rocking out at her shows, we did what we do best, namely consume copious amounts of cheese, wine, and “exotic” potato chips (steak crisps anyone?). We make for pretty good travel companions; together we have rung in New Years in Melbourne, hiked the castle-dotted hillside of Sintra, Portugal, and road-tripped from Virginia to L.A. with her oversized beagle. Despite our long run of successes, one thing we have never mastered is a complimentary walking pace. After years of city-living in NYC and L.A. Mariana is an efficient “mover,” whereas I can’t manage to break a 2.5 mph saunter. While I cautiously scout the scene for ne’er-do-wells (a byproduct of that time in Barcelona), Mariana’s quick transitions leave her with ample time to chat up the locals. This inevitably earns us free drinks, rides, and snacks wherever we go. We make a good team: she attracts the good luck and I do the background check.
Here are some scenes from our most recent success story, in London and Paris:
Charlie the dog, one of our gracious hosts in London.
Paddington Bear pushes the merch at Mariana Bell’s show
The sticky toffee pudding at the Holly Bush in Hampstead is served with a sinful dollop of clotted cream.
Angels ride the scary-long escalator in the Angel tube station.
“Wallpaper” at London’s 12 Bar Club commemorates the late greats of Rock ‘n Roll.
A vending machine in London’s 12 Bar Club serves nuts-only.
Perching for a moment near St. James Park.
Pigeons take flight over St. James Park lake, London.
A duck hopes for a gluten handout at St. James Park, London.
Fountains spout at Longon’s Trafalgar square.
Spring crops up along the Mall near St. James Park, London.
The nicotine-deprived grab a smoke on London’s Albemarle Street.
This whisky-laden “bacon and egg cocktail” at London Cocktail Club sure put a smile on my face!
At La Pâtissserie des Rêves in Paris’ 7th arrondissement, pastries are displayed like delicate works of art under glass domes.
A lemon tart sits pretty in a glass dome display case at La Pâtissserie des Rêves.
Galettes – savory buckwheat crepes – at Breizh Café in the Marais are best washed down with apple cider.
Whenever I’m in Paris I visit these handsome birdcage lamps by Matheiu Challières at le Bon Marché.
Visitors leave their Musée Rodin entrance stickers on a nearby light pole.
Reds and Blues at the Musée Rodin.
A man contemplates the Burghers of Calais sculpture at Le Musée Rodin.
A moped on Île Saint-Louis attracts attention.
Floral wallpaper accents the rooms at Le Robinet d’Or, a boutique hotel along the Canal St. Martin in Paris’ 10th arrondissement.