It's hard to believe we are coming to the close of our second week in Paris and the departure of Kirstin, Derek, and Cora. We've had excellent luck with the weather these first two weeks. It has been cooler this week than the first, but the rain has had the good manners to fall mainly during the evening, leaving our daytime wanderings dry.
Kirstin and Derek have been exploring parts of Paris they remember from their visit here three years ago. Cora has been a real trooper, going pretty much everywhere with them. Two days ago we had an early supper at another favorite restaurant of Kirstin and Derek's, Frenchie To Go. Priscilla and I took care of Cora that afternoon, taking the Metro (subway) with Cora to meet Kirstin and Derek at the restaurant.
This is a good time to write about the hospitality of the French people. You've probably all heard the old saw that Parisians are rude. We've found the opposite to be true. When we took Cora on the Metro, we had to tackle three flights of stairs with her in a stroller. A nice man assisted us down each flight by holding the front of the stroller while I held the back. Another time Priscilla and I were trying to locate a walking trail when a woman called out to us from the third floor wondering if she could help us. She then came all the way outside to help us. A final example took place on our trip with Anna back to the airport when she was leaving. The RER B train line normally runs all the way out to Charles de Gaulle airport, but last Sunday it stopped short for some reason. A nice man explained to us that at the last stop that day we would get on a bus to finish the trip. The French are justly proud of their language, and do so appreciate it when you make an attempt to speak French. They will often change to English, but you can tell they appreciate the effort to speak French. If people see me mumbling to myself walking down the street, it's because I'm practicing what I'm going to say in French at my next stop, not because I've come unhinged.
Well, back to what we've been up to around here. Yesterday we checked out the Bastille Market, which is only a few blocks from our flat. The selection of all manner of foods is quite extensive there. With some planning ahead, I'm sure we will be able to make good use of this market. In the afternoon, Priscilla and Kirstin had a shopping outing while Derek and I stayed back at the flat while Cora napped. Last night, Grandma and Grandpa had babysitting duty so that Kirstin and Derek could go out to a favorite avant-garde restaurant named Dilia. They had a wonderful night, and we had a great time with Cora.
Today we had lunch at what is becoming our favorite neighborhood bistro, Chez Mademoiselle. We had a wonderful meal and they were so good with Cora. Felix and his wife, Alexia, are the owners. Felix and René run the front of the house, and I mean run. They are constantly moving. Neither of them will put on any weight as long as they keep this up. They do a brisk business at this "off-the-beaten-track" location on rue Charlemagne.
Tomorrow we will be off earlier to take Kirstin, Derek, and Cora back to Charles de Gaulle airport for their return to the States. I'm hopeful that this time, the RER B will be going all the way to the airport.