Paree, Paree!

Paris was wonderful! Just the perfect weather, blue skies shining down on the leafy boulevards, and our hotel was in the perfect area – the south end of the Latin Quarter, near the Rue Mouffetard.

So our hotel – near the publisher’s offices – was in an area of typical Parisian buildings, with the balconies and angled dormer roofs. Rue Mouffetard nearby is a wonderful narrow cobbled street winding up through markets and fromageries, epiceries, every kind of old-style shop, along with a million restaurants.

The journey across Paris by Metro was hell, and ditto the journey back today. No problem when we went by Metro to the Seine and Notre Dame – because then we weren’t dragging suitcases. But heavy suitcases on the hot packed Metro – and all the steps to carry them up and dozn. The escalators – of which there are hardly any anyway- never seemed to be working in the direction we wanted. And today, the rail workers were having a go-slow, so I stood in a queue of about thirty people and took over an hour to get to the front.

But those were the only bad bits. Paris itself was, well, just so Parisian. We sat drining beers at little round tables in the sunshine, we had soupe a l’oignon and red wine, and cafe au lait and croissant for breakfast – for a couple of days there, we were Frencher than the French.

There was also lunch with the people from Helium, my French publisher. We ate at a restaurant in Rue Mouffetard, of course. Great people, and for once I remembered to take a photo – that is, Aileen reminded me. That’s been the problem – she hasn’t been there to jpg my camera arm before.

From left to right – Gilberte, Gérard, Valérie (translator), yours truly, Sophie (publisher) and Sandrine.

It was good to hear that the French edition is going into reprint.

I’ll blog about Bruges tomorrow, now I’ve got internet access again.

Cheers,  R

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