Wednesday, after Omar left, I had lunch on my own at one of my favorite neighborhood places. Then I did grocery shopping and a stint at the laundromat (for sheets and towels), and finished with a quiet dinner at home.
On Thursday I had a cozy lunch with my French friend Antoine, who is working at an art conservation organization south of Pigalle (which he tells me is now going by the moniker SoPi). He has recently moved to a larger place in the 17ème, near Batignolles. Métro line 13 is sub-optimal but he loves his immediate neighborhood, which is a gated courtyard.
At first look “South Pigalle” and “SoPi” sound fine. Until you realize that “South” is English — it should be « Sud Pigalle » and « SuPi », but I guess they just don’t have the same cachet.
I’ve mostly avoided the Pigalle area in prior years because it’s tacky and has a sketchy reputation after dark.
Honestly, though, most of the straight sex clubs here are no worse than the gay clubs that one frequents in the Marais.
Pigalle is just below the tourist mecca of Montmartre, so parts of it are trampled by that tourist horde.
I did run across a cool bunch of decorated posts in the heart of Pigalle. I posted a video clip on Instagram.
The farther south you go from Pigalle the nicer things get, however.
These Haussmann buildings on or near rue Condorcet are downright gorgeous.
Sherard at one point tasked me with a dislike of Haussmann areas. After thinking it over I admitted a taste for twisty little medieval streets, but I claimed that I also have no problem with wide, straight avenues or boulevards, or with Haussmann-style buildings, so long as they offer restaurants and shops on the ground level and aren’t trampled to death by tourists.