boules, Charles V walls, Chez Kiki, city walls, Design Oracles, Fondue 59, Gaîté Lyrique, La Boca, La Chaise au Plafond, LB, Marais, meals, Oracles du Design, Passage du Grand Cerf, pétanque, rue d'Aboukir, rue de Cléry, rue des Jeûneurs, rue des Jeux-Neufs, rue Quincampoix, 太火锅
This catches up on a few things that didn’t make it into earlier posts.
On Friday afternoon I took my cousin Brian, his wife Sheila and their friends Rick and Cheryl on a walk through some of my favorite little streets in Paris. It was a pleasure to introduce them to rue Quincampoix and rue Montorgueil, among others. We took a break for kirs at LB (La Boca) on the corner of rue Tiquetonne and rue Montorgueil, then had wine and cheese at my place and finished with a good dinner at La Chaise au Plafond in the Marais (even though the service wasn’t particularly good). These two pics came from our walk:
There was a funny moment when we walked through the Palais de Fruits on rue Montorgueil. The proprietor said he had initially thought I was Parisian, since I had a proper scarf, until he saw me smiling, which gave me away as a tourist. Darn!
One day last week I had lunch on a whim at the unassuming Jewish restaurant opposite my front windows. The owner’s wife (Kiki perhaps?) asked if I was alone and when I said “yes” she said I wasn’t alone any more because I was with them. Without my even ordering it she put in front of me a 10 euro “salad” that really was enough food even without a main course. I guess I’m part of the family now!
On Monday evening I decided to check out a little Chinese restaurant on rue de Cléry that I had noticed on the walk I took with Brian and Sheila and their friends last Friday. The street is lined with clothing stores and is completely dead in the evening, so Fondue 59 (太火锅), filled with Chinese diners, stood out. Even so, I don’t think I would have noticed it if the door hadn’t been open when we strolled by.
It turns out that Fondue 59 is a Chinese hot pot restaurant where you boil a wide selection of ingredients in an induction heated saucepan, most of which are done in one to three minutes. It’s all you can eat, but I barely had room for the fish course after all the delicious vegetables. My guess is that the friendly young owners speak English but I didn’t ask whether there’s an English menu.
My apartment this year is on rue des Jeûneurs. The name seemed rather boring since a jeûneur is someone who fasts. But I just discovered that the name has a more amusing source. I had realized that the street was just outside the 14th century city walls of Charles V, which stood between present day rue de Cléry and rue d’Aboukir. It turns out that my street was originally called rue des Jeux-Neufs in the 17th century due to many sites for playing the then-new game of boules (the French version of which is now called pétanque). Jeûneurs is just a distortion of Jeux-Neufs.
Last but not least, this picture reminds us all that living in Paris is a lot like living anywhere else. The washer-drier in my apartment actually dries, but I have yet to figure out a setting that suits permanent press shirts.