Friday, October 14, 2011

A mixed day--in the best sense of the word: Part 1

   Feet killing me, hair needs a wash and we have a rendezvous with a friend at a bistro at 8 p.m. which means leaving here a half hour before. I know, I KNOW, it's only a couple of stops on the Metro but we do keep leaving by the wrong sortie, and not knowing which way to turn when we do emerge, mole-like, at ground level. One side of a boulevard looks very much like the other when you're on new ground.
   Anyway, today. I wanted to visit a certain shop over near the Halles so set off ten-ish with the understanding that I'd be back around 1:30 p.m., bearing lunch.
   Even dreary weather can't spoil being in Paris but it was rather wonderful to go out on the street and see blue skies.
 Don't know if you're familiar with the modern Halles--the godawful Forum des Halles shopping complex that moved into the area where the original, famous food market once stood. A massive reno is underway, and I can't work out if they're destroying the old one or building a new one. Maybe both.
   Old and new can live together happily. Here's proof just along the street where the late 16th/early 17th century church of St. Eustache is the backdrop to this modern sculpture.
   From there, I headed south to the Metro station that was the start of my journey to Porte d'Ivry in southern Paris. Who knew that that pink Metro line split up at some point and went in two different directions. I had a 50 percent chance of being right, but wasn't, so off I jumped, backtracked, eventually reached the correct station and emerged to find myself staring at modern Paris.

      I'd come here because this quartier is home to a huge Asian supermarket called Tang Frères. Stocked with rice wrappers, hoi sin sauce and other necessities that are hard to find in our part of France, I joined the queue at a little Vietnamese sandwich shop, and left with a warm bag that, as I rode home on the Metro, emitted petite gusts of spice and savouriness.
     And that was only the morning.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

thanks for jogging my memory about Les Halles. My first trip to Paris in 1981, they had just started digging up the area that is now the "mall", metro & gardens. I've taken pictures of it every trip since. Have to say that although I didn't hate everything about what Les Halles has become, I'm happy to see that it is being updated/changed again. I'm hopeful that it will be better the next time I get there!