14, Fevrier, 2009
I cannot pretend to be enthusiastic about spending Saint Valentines Day, the sacred day of love, alone in Paris. But, I am content in the knowledge that I have many people in my life who do love me, and maybe even one or two who could be happy spending this day avec moi. That being said, the day has been lovely for me myself and I. The weather is glorious. I start my walk away from the 4th, head up the Seine to the 7th with a stop at Cafe Beaux Arts for a cafe creme. Walking in Paris is best taken at a leisurely pace, as each shop window draws you into their world, delighting your senses with its paintings, books, haute couture or antiquities. I stroll down Rue du Bac, there is a little shop I remember from a previous trip where I find a few gifts for loved ones at home, then I stop at Cafe Varenne for cafe longe. A few more purchases - I am crazy about silly stockings - before stepping into one of the temples of gastronomie for dejeuner; Gaya par Pierre Gagnaire. The room is small and casual, the staff are caring and suitably attentive to a woman dining on her own. I propose a glass of champagne rose, the perfect enhancement for a happy mood. I order from the Maree Modeste portion of the menu; Darn de lieu jaune pochee au beurre, puree de cresson; croquettes de potimarron. For dessert; Crumble de pommes clocharde; creme glacee caramel et sirop cidre. The walk back to the flat is even happier and I stop to browse in a shop of beautiful clothes, ponder wistfully over a pair of jeans for 337 euros, knock my brain back into place and sally forth to Shakespeare and Co. where I purchase a copy of love poems and letters by Robert and Elizabeth Barrett Browning.
I envision a gentle evening of reading, cooking, eating and sweet dreams. Love is beautiful.