It's a given that I'm truly here for the food. As I sit down to write this post, I'm munching on chocolate and thinking about my next meal.
Cooking starts with the ingredients and Parisians care about their ingredients. Fresh markets abound and they always seem to be busy. In addition to markets, the French place importance on specialization. Sure, you can go to a Carrefour and find everything you need to make a nice dinner, but you can also go to the boucherie for your meat, the fromagerie for your cheese, the boulangerie for your bread, and the épicerie for your produce. The people want to know where their food is coming from and I respect that.
A month or so ago, a man in a truck knocked on our door pedaling crops from a farm in France. My host mom bought loads of carrots, potatoes, shallots, onions, and Asian pears.
If you ever come live in France, do not underestimate the importance of bread. If you don't bring a baguette home to eat with dinner, you're doing it wrong. I often find myself on the RER feeling downright Parisian with a tradi sticking out of my bag.
When you buy a loaf of delicious bread, you may as well indulge in a little butter, too. For butter addicts, the dairy section of a French grocery store is a happy place. Perhaps for the average butter consumer it could be overwhelming. I've made it one of my missions to try as many types of butter while here as possible. You can choose from organic, salted, unsalted, soft, and much more. It's truly an art here. Some brands mold or shape their butter into beautiful forms.
Yarn in France is cheaper than in the US. For a knitter, this is clearly good news. Since my arrival I've ordered wool from a popular european provider and purchased some local yarn at a yarn and fabric exposition. There is a knitted blanket in my future.
Art is everywhere. There are famous establishments like Musee D'Orsay or the Louvre, but also local spots and festivals where anyone can roam around and enjoy someone else's creativity. It's impossible to be bored in this city.
More soon, readers. What would you like to hear about?