The second day in Paris, we woke up refreshed and with a new sense of energy. We had already "checked off" a few things on our must-do list, and wanted to relax a little and take our time seeing the city. We went to a breakfast that became our beloved routine, cafe au lait and a chocolate croissant. We had a first Parisian croissant at a famous bakery called Eric Kayser. It was the most buttery, light as air, sinful thing I had ever eaten up until that point. Thank goodness we don't have an Eric Kayser in Wilmington. I would be as big as a cow for sure. I couldn't stop eating them. You have to go there before you die just to have the experience. I'm almost positive there is nothing like them in America.
We took the metro to the Marais area where Merci and other boutiques I had read about are located. It is such a charming area of Paris and all of the shops had tons of eye candy. We stopped in small men's shoes boutique and bought Gray a great looking pair of shoes. We ended up at Merci right around noon and spent at least an hour looking over everything. It's like a Parisian Anthropologie but much more selective. They have the softest leather shoes, adorable children's section, to die for clothing for both men and women, and a houseware section in the basement where a small cafe is located for an espresso fix. We ended up buying four light fixtures that we are going to have installed on our bookshelves as well a little lingerie set. That was the one thing I wanted to buy there because I had always read how beautiful and simple it is there; unlike the tacky stuff that I always see here.
In that same area, there are tons of art studios, cafes. and gorgeous homes. The doors in Paris alone could make you fall in love. Every door is painted a different color, they are massive, and always have really great hardware. We took tons of pictures of doors when we were there.
After hours of shopping and site seeing, we settled in to another culinary delight, French pizza and cold beer. There is something about hot pizza and cold beer on a foggy autumn day. When our pizza arrived, they brought olive oil and balsamic vinegar to put on top; doesn't sound very good but it was delightful. It was about 5pm and we were starving and tired. We had so much people watching and sat outside almost every meal.
That night, we went to the Champs Elysee to window shop and see a different side of Paris. We walked right into Hotel Crillon. We were a little cold and we always love a swanky hotel. They were so friendly in the hotel and welcomed us right in. We would have sat down for a drink, but I was on a mission to find the Chanel and Hermes stores just to see the window displays. I just read that the Hotel Crillon was sold for 250 million Euros. That is one swanky hotel. The interior of the hotel is beautiful and it was very cozy in the lobby area. We walked right through and Hermes greeted us as soon as we stepped out of the door. The window displays were not disappointing.
We walked a few blocks, enjoying the architecture and ran into the famous Buddah Bar. A friend of mine had given me a journal before I left for Paris with notes that she had taken while there on her honeymoon. Buddah Bar was one of her favorites, so we decided to go in. The drinks are gawd awful expensive, but sometimes a 18 Euro champagne cocktail is worth the view.
This kind of place is not Gray's scene...AT ALL... so after a drink, we left to find a more reasonable dinner option. We took a cab drivers advice (mistake) and he took us to the Pont Neuf area and dropped us off a seafood restaurant that was like an upscale Long John Silver. We laughed the entire time we were there. Sometimes Gray makes me laugh when he thinks I'm going to cry. Our first "real" dinner in France was at a cheesy tourist trap. It was like we were in a tacky restaurant in Myrtle Beach with bad lighting and themed uniforms. The food, although not horrible, was not really what we were looking for. We made the best of it, drank our wine and ate our gallon size order of mussels, and high tailed it out of there to another culinary delight, Publicis Drugstore. We sat at the bar and had the best cocktails of the entire trip. It was a slower night for them and getting late, so the manager sat with us and we just talked and talked about Paris and his life and our lives and had a great time. The building alone is gorgeous, but the interior and the company is really what made what could have been remembered as the Long John Silver's night turn into something spectacular.
The amazing food