September 12, 2010

une table pour un

I'm going to Paris. Alone. No, I haven't broken up with the Senior Pup. I need to revisit Paris at my own speed.

Over the past few weeks I've been trying to loose weight, learning a few phrases in French, and analyzing the contents of my closet. I'm really nervous to be traveling alone and to assuage that nervousness I've been researching my every move to death. Over the next few days, I'll post the fruit of all that research. I welcome your suggestions and comments.

There are a lot of great Paris-focused websites out there but I also find a lot of fakery. Not everyone knows the language (not me, thanks to my 1970's Ontario education!), not everyone is born understanding the Metro. Not everyone is comfortable walking into a foreign restaurant alone.  Paris is wonderful but not it's not all tulips,roses and macarons.When I return, I'll let you know how it went - warts and all. I'm sure I'll have an ubiquitous 'macaron' but I promise I'll not blog about it.

My week will be taken up with street markets, my own walking tours past the houses and haunts of artists and writers and eating out. Excursions to Giverny, Auvers sur Oise and eating out. The Musee D'Orsay, L'Orangerie and eating out. Le Bon Marche, covered passages and eating out.

My next post will be the hotels I researched. I welcome all your comments.

The great photo of  Boulevard Saint Michel is by Charles Bowman.


liza said...

This sounds like the Paris I wanted to see but couldn't. The company I keep were all about le Mickey, La Minnie et le Donald. Have a wonderful experience!

willow said...

Sounds like quite a glorious adventure. (and I am green with envy)

secret, fragile skies said...

This is the perfect time to go. A dream to go alone! Looking forward to your posts! Best.

California Girl said...

Too long ago since I was there but I loved it very much. I was on a 3
month back packing trip with my friend and we had heard so many negative things about Parisians we put off going there til late in the trip. We were only there four days and everyone treated us with kindness. Neither of us spoke French but, being young, we looked for people our own age from whom to get directions or advice. I remember hooking up (not sexually) with a charming student who spent an entire day with us showing us about. She was so nice.

We had an awesome time. Hope yours is as well.

Kat Mortensen said...

I've never been to Paris, but I have travelled alone. As much as it's a fashion faux pas, a money belt is really handy, as is a rainjacket in a pouch that you can use as a pillow. (Think K-Way.)

Pack jersey fabrics that roll up (so you can pack new stuff in the extra space).

Also, pack those disposable toilet seat covers in your purse - you'll thank me for that one.


Bon Voyage! (Btw, your latest follower is spam, I think. He was on two of mine and I blocked him. He has no followers, you'll see.)

corine said...

That's wonderful! My advice to you is to plan it out, map it out. Each time I go I get lost in the moment and arrive back home wondering how I missed out on things I had always wanted to see or do.

Eating alone is Paris is absolutely acceptable. Being alone is Paris: priceless. Please send me an email if you have questions.

ds said...

Bravo!! You have picked the best time to go--and don't worry about the eating alone bit. Everything I have read says that it is not a big deal there at all...
Can't wait to read the results of your research--and your impressions of your trip!
Happy travels!

David Engel said...

Couldn't be a more beautiful time of year to go. And going alone should be a blast there's so much to do. I went alone a couple years ago. Attended concerts at Salle Pleyel, dined at L'Asserre, Goumard... , ate the best macaroons at Laduree, Art everywhere... stayed at The Westin on rue Castiglione in the 1st, very, very convenient to everything!

Have Fun!


Giulia said...

Brava. As you know, I flew off at 17 by myself to go to university in France. If I could do that, you will be fine on your own. It was also a very high-tension era in Europe & the US. More later.


The Clever Pup said...

Thanks for the tips Kat. Last time I traveled we lugged around 3 raincoats and never once used them. Therefore it will rain this time everyday. Also. You reminded me that I need to pack my travel pillow.

Penney said...

I went with my 10 year,old son at that time and husband, who was on business. I never got a chance to do what you are going to do! How wonderful!!!
Comfortable walking shoes, and easy clothing..
Bon Voyage!!

Brian Miller said...

nice. this sounds like a wonderful trip..i hope you have tremendous fun..

Diane said...

Wow! An adventure....
The gardens you blogged about in Paris sounded amazing, I hope you get to walk-about them, and then talk-about them later.

on packing... an empty suitcase! So you can bring back all your finds.

T. Clear said...

Ah, heaven. There's no other word for it. And the crowds shall have eased from the crush of summer. I know this sounds touristy, but I'd been to Paris many times before my sons talked me into taking a one-hour boat trip on the Seine: it was worth every centime and every minute!

Jacqueline said...

Good for you for stepping out of your comfort zone. My advice...take each step slowly, quelling the anxiety, and with each achievement give yourself a pat on the back!
Have fun...learn...observe.

Anonymous said...

ne pas oublier juste d'être
Bravo,good post.
Palais du luxembourgeois et jardins du luxembourgeois, vous devez aller.

Mya.L said...

In case you don't know the Puces de Vanves (Vanves Flea Market), go there on Saturday or Sunday morning - stalls start packing up at midday. Stall holders are friendly (not snooty at all, unlike the Saint-Ouen ones), the goods are too dear and you can haggle no problem. They are based at Porte de Vanves in the XIVth arrondissement, the Métro stop is "Porte de Vanves" on line 13.

More details here: