Posts Tagged ‘book stalls’

New Dress

November 10, 2015


I returned a dress weeks ago and finally just got the access to the return on Modcloth.

I have been itching to get a new frock, but what with the scooter purchase and the unexpected, “hey let’s go to Paris for Christmas!” I have been loath to lay out any money for a new dress.

I want a new dress.

For Paris.

For my birthday.

Because it’s Monday.

Because maybe I want to wear it somewhere.

Not that I have a date or plans, but you never know.

I am still debating popping into the ARTumnal event on the 21st.

We shall see.

If so, then this is definitely the dress for it.

Or just to have a dress.

It’s nice to have something coming in the mail.

I won’t be spending anything else this month on clothes.

I am trying to keep it all to a dull roar.

Technically I could drop up to $200 on clothes this month, that’s what I put into my spending plan, but that was before Christmas in Paris and frankly, well, I would rather buy things in Paris than buy new clothes here.


I am getting myself a gang of Clarefontaine notebooks.  I see the occasionally here in the city, Flax will carry them, but they don’t tend to carry the collections or the special issued ones.  I suppose I could just order them online, but there is something special about buying notebooks in Paris.

I will definitely be purchasing a special notebook for the trip, me and my glue stick are ready.

“Whenever you go on a trip, grab a glue stick and paste in things to a little notebook, so you can see everything you did while you were there,” a very good friend of mine, who travels a lot, told me this years ago and I do exactly that.

Where ever I am, Paris, Burning Man, London, Rome, New York, I stick and paste little things from my travels in that notebook.

I discovered, in my great hunt for my passport, so many of my notebooks from Paris.

I was a gog at all the places i went, all the little tickets and postcards and strip photos from photo booths in Metro stations, with ribbons and match book covers, with the Metro tickets and airplane boarding passes, the reciepts from museums and the ocassional business card or note from someone I had met.

I was able to remember so much just by flipping through the journals.




And stickers.



I like stickers and I always try to get some from where I travel to.

The museum stores normally have some fantastic ones that you just don’t see anywhere else.

My trip in 2007 I got some phenomenal stickers from the Pompidou, I was just astounded at the whimsy and artistry of them and I never saw them anywhere else again.

But they are in my notebook.

I want as well, a market bag.

I lost my Merle Moqueur tote bag, I think in a Uber one day coming home from school being totally exhausted and stupid I think I left it in the front seat, so I need to replace that.

I would love to go to that bookstore, it’s a great one and definitely my favorite in the city.

Even though all the kids go to Shakespeare and Company, which has its appeal, but it’s a definite tourist stop and Le Merle Moqueur was just a neighborhood bookstore with a great selection of books and paper goods and I got two strands of paper cut outs there that I still have hanging in my house–one of the Eiffel Tower and paper hearts in yellow and orange by my chaise lounge and the other of pale green birds hanging in my bathroom.

I may get another set of paper cut outs.

They are sweet and not a lot of money to buy.

I also will get a hat.

It’s Paris.

You have to get a hat in Paris.


I have to get a hat in Paris.

I always get great compliments on the cabbie hat I got in the city my visit in 2007.

I still have it and whenever I wear it I do feel just a kiss of Paris.

The last time I wore it to school my friend who gave me a ride said, “nice hat!  You look very French today.”

“I bought it in Paris,” I replied with a smile and adjusted the brim.

“Of course you did.”

I chuckle.


I want some tea.



From Mariage Freres.

The Earl Grey.

So yummy.

I remember the first time I had it, visiting my person up in Pacific Heights and she was someone who travelled frequently to Paris, being in fashion, how could she not, and she made me a cup and it was divine.

Just a kiss of milk and heaven in a cup.

Yeah, I take a tin home with me for sure.

Perhaps some perfume from duty-free on the way back out, another bottle of Chanel Egoiste.

I still have some from the Chanel Boutique down on Maiden Lane, but it will be gone soon enough and it’s always nice to have a bottle I bought in Paris, in the airport as the size of bottle I want won’t go through security.

Postcards are on the list.

I will send myself one.

I will send many to friends and family.

It’s what I do.

I love snail mail.

There’s something so lovely and deliberate about sitting down and writing a little note and thinking about the person I am writing to, then the placing of the stamp, sealed with a kiss, the dropping it in the post and letting her go.

The time it takes for mail to get from France to here will be longer than the time I am in Paris, so sending myself a postcard is like a lovely little reminder of the adventures I had while away.

Perhaps a small poster from the booksellers along the Seine.

I pair of earrings.

That is always something I do.

I still have the pair I bought at a brocante (flea market) at Square D’Anvers one of the last weekends I was in Paris.

I always think of walking around that market and the sunshine, it was a warm April day, last weekend in April and it was almost hot and the cafes were overflowing and the music of French being spoken all around me, soon.


I will be there again.

I am looking forward to it.

And I will be well dressed for it!

Change of Plans

April 13, 2013


Not going to do it.

Not going to wait in line.

I know I only have a few more weeks left in Paris, just over two, to be exact, but I cannot bring myself to wait in line for an exhibit, even if it is free, even if it is couture, I just could not do it.

Besides, I was to meet with Corinne at 4 p.m. and I did not have the wiggle room in my schedule to wait even had I wanted to.

I went for a walk along the Seine and did one of my favorite things instead, I perused the book stalls.  I bought some post cards and I got a few small posters.

All for less than 15 Euro.

I also picked up the requested magnet to bring to my friend’s fridge in Rome–ie rent for the three days I am there.

“What are you going to do in Rome?” I was asked earlier.

Fuck if I know.

I am just going to go.

I know it is a beautiful place, and I hear it is warm and sunny.  I am very much down for the warm and sunny bit.  Since my friend does tour guiding I don’t feel like I have to do much research here, I will show up, get off the plane and let myself be led.

And should I just end up sitting in a cafe, well, then, that’s not too bad either, sitting in a cafe in Rome sounds pretty damn tight actually.

I was going through the Paris tour books in the flat this morning as I ate my oatmeal and had my morning coffee, I was thinking about what I should do and where I should go and I got tired of looking at the photographs, and the suggestions, and the maps, and the go here, do this.


I tossed the books aside and said screw it, I am done trying to figure out what more I can do while I am here.  Just being here is enough.

I have done a lot of living here and I have seen a lot of the monuments and like a person who actually lives here I am no longer much of a fan of the places that curate to the tourist.

I do not want to deal with crowds.

I do not want to stand in line.

I am just about museum’ed out.

I have been to the D’Orsay, twice, the Orangerie, the Louvre, the Pompidou, the Rodin, Musee Branly, the Musee Marmottan-Monet, the Dali museum, and Musee Carnvalet.

I think I have pretty much covered what I want to see as far as museums go.

I do not have a desire to see Versailles, though I hear it is worth the trip.

I just do not feel like taking a full day trip outside of Paris, aside from exploring Saint Germain-en-Laye when I go out to Chambourcy in two weeks.  That will be my quiet time retreat to get centered before I return state side.

I found myself plugging in the co-ordinates to the house sitting gig I am doing and Graceland where I will be staying as well as the nanny gig, and I realized, yes, once again my sense of direction is not really direct.

There is a difference between street and avenue in Oakland.

The gig is on 42nd Street.

Graceland is on 51st Avenue.

I google mapped it and it is not 9 blocks away.


It is 7.7 miles away.

Well, fuck me.

Then I thought, you know, that’s not so bad.

Fuck me.

Oh well.

Actually, it is not so bad.  It means exercise, and exercise for me is a good thing.  It means riding my bike.  Although I am sure for the first few times out I will probably take BART to get back and forth.  I am actually looking forward to riding.  The legs are a little rusty.

Rain in Paris is lovely and I like walking in it.

Riding my bicycle?

Not so much.

I have my fingers crossed that tomorrow will actually dawn bright and sunny and in the 70s as the weather forecast has promised all week.

There have been pockets of sunshine, got to step out to the park yesterday with the kids in Asniers Sur Seine, but then it blew over and hailed and thundered and flash flood rain and lightening.

It was exciting, but not really bicycle weather.

Should it actually be sunny, I plan on taking out the bike.  I will ride from the 9th into the 7th and hang out there for a while.  I have a commitment to take care of, my last time there, and two coffee dates back to back at La Tour Eiffel Cafe afterwards.

Yes, it is near the Eiffel Tower.

No, I will not be going there.

I was thinking, rather, either a trip out to Bois de Bologne.


A bicycle ride through the Marais.

I have not been there in a while and the draw of the small streets and the eclectic shops was calling to me as I skirted around Hotel de Ville trying to find the entrance to the couture exhibit.  I did briefly think about popping in and out, but time being tight I decided to just walk the Seine.

Book Stall

Book Stall

I rambled up both the Left and the Right Banks crossing over a couple of the bridges, until I found the spot I got my magnet, posters, and post-cards from.

Then I dropped down the stairs and hit the RER C and went to Pont d’Alma to ramble over to 65 Quai D’Orsay.

After a check in with Corinne and some quality time seeing people I dearly love and cherish.

Funny that, how fast you can connect with someone and create a community and love another, so much, it brings tears to your eyes to even begin to say good-bye.

“You’ll be back,” she said and hugged me tighter.

Yes, I will.


To tell you the truth, I don’t know.

I am uncertain how the rest of this falls out.

I am, however, excited to be still in one spot for a while.  To live and breathe and speak English, to not make an ass out myself in French, to get a manicure/pedicure that does not cost 50 Euro.

50 Euro!

Not that I have gone and done it, that’s just the average price you see listed on the few places that do offer the service.

I am not going to dwell long on what will happen next or where I will go next.

I am still here, still in Paris, still abroad, and despite not really being a tourist, I am putting my tourist pants on. Getting out the camera a little more and really asking myself if there is anything I have not done that I must do.

Stay present minded and enjoy the view is all that really comes up.

The view, well, it’s pretty good.

Here in Paris.



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