Rule #7 dictated that I should “Buy fresh flowers for your apartment, a fresh baked croissant on your morning walk, and a glass of rosé at any café you stumble upon. Parisians understand how to live a really beautiful, decadent life. Take note.” While I haven’t been stopping and having a glass of rosé too frequently, and I’ve calmed down a bit on the croissants (we’re at one or two a week, now), I have been taking the first part very seriously; I’ve bought myself peonies every week that I’ve been here. On Saturday mornings (and one Friday morning, when Annie was here, instead) I’ve taken the metro to the École Militaire/Invalides neighborhood in the 7eme, had breakfast at a sweet little café and enjoyed a big cup of tea and a good book, and then picked up a bunch of 20 or so peonies. They make the apartment smell divine and add so much color to the space. They are truly magnificent flowers, and I’m so happy I’m getting to indulge in them during their short timeframe.
On my last Saturday morning adventure I went to Rue Cler, a market street near the Eiffel Tower, with tons of cafés with outdoor seating, vendors selling fresh produce and rotisseries, and even a knife sharpener, who wheels his cart up and down the street, sharpening knives while you wait. And then, of course, there are the stacks and stacks of peonies at the flower shop. I’ve gone back since just to wander, and the table was full of dark red, pale pink, and magenta peony buds, stacked a foot high. I wish I’d gotten a picture.
Other Paris Details of Note: You know what’s really in here? Scooters! Two-wheel push-scooters, everyone has them. Grown women, young kinds, college boys. They bring them on the bus, into bookstores, and they zip around you on the sidewalk. It’s wild. They were popular at home about 10-15 years ago but have since become seriously uncool. Not here! I gave mine to my nieces, I might have to steal it back.