15 Mai - This is our NEW favorite French song by our NEW favorite French star:
We didn't really plan to do anything today except go to the store because we had run out of a few essentials (wine). We walked to Franprix, and the local pharmacie, got the things we wanted, plus a few that caught our fancy while we were there, and returned to the apartment. We are definitely thinking of buying one of those little carts with wheeels that people here use when they go shopping. I did think you might be interested in the parking situation in Paris. It is a major hassle and you can pay as much for a garage as for an apartment. Most people just take their chances finding a place on the street, and that's especially true in our working class neighborhood. There are some free spaces, but mostly they are areas in which you have to pay a parking fee. They don't have parking meters like you find in the US, they have one or two machines per block at which you make your payment. I think that's a much more viable method. Of course, that's just for those who own a car. Motorcyclists usually use this method.
We came back to the apartment, sat around for a while, had lunch which was a sandwich with ham, tomato and cheese we had just bought, then sat around some more. We were both getting a case of "cabin fever" after a while, so I suggested we go for a walk. Robb was more than ready for that also.
Before we really got started, we stopped at a shoe repair shop so Robb could check on the shoelaces because the ones he bought were a bit too short. The lady who waited on him was so very nice. She even put the laces in his shoes after he bought them.
My original idea was to walk down to Place Léon Blum, and then follow the bus route down rue Chemin Vert for a few blocks. Everytime we've taken the bus, I've seen a store on that rue that had nice leather jackets in the window, and I wanted to check it out. Of course, we ended up on the wrong street, but at the time I wasn't sure that it wouldn't turn into the street for which I was looking, so we just kept walking. It finally dawned on me that it was the wrong street, and I suggested we try one more street over. Sure enough, that was rue Chemin Vert. So we walked all the way down to Boulevard Richard Lenoir.
I couldn't believe we had walked so far, but then with the Colonne de Juillet staring me in the face, I couldn't deny the length of our journey. As we traversed Blvd Lenoir, we came across an office supply store. It was the famous Office Depot with which we're all familiar. There are several in the city. I have been looking for a refill for my pen in every place that sold pens that we've come across, but to no avail, so I figured why not try Office Depot, and sure enough, they had the one I needed. I bought a package of ten for about €3.
We continued down the boulevard to Place de la Bastille, where we came upon a flea-market-like thing that has been there since we first got here. We checked it out, stopping at an oriental booth, where I bought a couple of oriental jackets for €15. I tried to bargain them down to €10 and thought I had been successful until the guy handed me back €5 change for a €20 note. It was still a bargain. We passed one booth where they were selling incense. It smelled so good and I was hoping Robb would buy one, but he didn't.
Then, we made our way through the crowd to rue de la Roquette where we got the bus back to our area. I've told you before about the cool offer they have here for getting ADSL-TV-Téléphone and today I was lucky enough to come across an advert for it. If you're pc gives you a large enough picture (or if your eyes are good) you can see that the offer is €19.90 for the first three months, then €29.90 per month with a €3 a month fee for the box. But even with the box, that's only about $51 bucks a month. I pay more than that for basic cable. And by the way, their ADSL is faster than our cable internet.
Plus à venir, mes amis.