This past weekend Alice visited me! The whole weekend was great, but my favorite part was our lunch on Sunday. She hadn't yet had a traditional French meal, so I looked up places open on Sundays. We arrived at Chez Paul, which is in the 11th close to Bastille, at around 2. It's so old school, i love it. I don't know how long it's been around, but at least from the 40s. So off the bat I loved that it felt like I was in a little time capsule.
Anyway, we sit down and a few minutes later the table next to us is filled with two french woman and three french men. The one man was so excited to say hello to his friend that he accidentally spilled red wine on her shirt. So, she takes off her shirt. She was sitting there in her beautiful lace bra for a few minutes while she tried to get the wine out of her shirt. She looked at us and said "oh I'm sorry, but you know, we're french!" No big deal, just a 40 year old woman (in incredibly good shape) stripping at lunch.
Then they ordered SO many appetizers. Oysters, risotto with fois gras, sausage, cheese, and on it went. I thought they were having a lunch out of appetizers, oh how I was wrong. They all cleaned the plates of their main dishes. Of course, they were all skinny as well. As their eating and drinking was going on, one of them was drawing caricatures of the waiters on ten euro bills. He was clad in tattoos and had an awesome skull ring, but seemed oddly young and childish. You could tell this group frequented Chez Paul often, they knew all the staff. Throughout my meal he would turn to me and say odd things like "did you catch the flu in Mexico?" when I coughed and asked "are you trying to kill me?" when his chair broke. All in a very lighthearted way, though.
I should mention what Alice and I ate. I had pepper steak that came with a huge portion of potates au gratin-delicious! And Alice had a nice piece of salmon in a cream sauce. We also split a tarte tatin which was quite nice. I would definitely good back for the food.
As we were finishing our meal the guy with the tattoos looked at me and said "you're not going to have an apartif? Have an apartif! It will be our treat! He's the boss, he can do whatever he wants" and he points to his friend who had the coolest red glasses and also a skull ring. So they bought us creme de menthe which looks and tastes like listerine. As we're drinking the listerine the tattoo man started sketching me! It was cool, but also awkward because he was blatantly staring at me. I wanted to ask him for the sketch but was too embarrassed. But hey, that is the closest I will probably come to being a "muse" in Paris.
I guess Chez Paul is where cool Parisians go because the British couple next to us told us they saw Jean-Paul Gaultier the last time they were there. They said he was there with a little boy and "an incredibly glamorous woman." All of a sudden the entire place went dark and waitresses brought out a birthday cake for the little boy and sang him happy birthday.
Anyway, it was a great lunch. I strive to be cool and rich and spend my Sundays eating enormous amounts of food with my friends. I can go without the stripping, but hey if the mood strikes...
Later that day Alice saw a guy propose to his girlfriend at the Eiffel tower! How adorable. He had a band, all her friends and family, and a banner asking her to marry him. She cried, ha. Although I'm sure I would have too, I cried watching the Google Paris commercial from the Superbowl.
On a completely different note, I loved this article. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/from_our_own_correspondent/8500246.stm