Posts Tagged ‘bread’

Oh, Sweet Friday

April 30, 2016

How do I love thee?

Let me count the ways.

One sparkling, clean, fresh, tidy home.

I got up early today and I did the deal, wrote, breakfasted, coffee’d, wrote some more, and ran up to the market to pick up a few things for the weekend–my little co-op will be closed for International Workers Day on this Sunday, May 1st.

Which marks three years back from Paris for me.

I remember leaving so well, like it was yesterday and I am marveling at the amazing amount of life that I have lived since I have returned from my adventure in trying to be French for a little tiny time in my life.

It was so very, very, very hard.

But it was so worth it.

Every tear I cried, sluiced away in the memories of buttery smells from the patisserie by Square D’Anvers–which I am quietly and joyfully reminded of every time I ride my scooter to work past Tartine on Guerrero Street.  Tartine is the only place I have ever smelled that same delicious baking smell from outside of Paris.  It has something to do with the butter they use for making the croissants and something to with the bread making.

I am no expert, but my nose, well, it knows.

Three years since I moved back from Paris.

And here I am at the nadir of my last month of my first year of graduate school.

Here I am heading into a well deserved weekend from a great job with children I love and a family I respect and am privileged to work for.

A family that confirmed they want me full time for the summer.


Although there will be changes in my schedule which I am not horribly thrilled about, I’ll start much earlier with the family than I do now, for instance.

I will be back to working 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

40 hours a week.

I’ve been averaging 35 hours a week when I’m not in school and 28 when I am.

Plus, I have worked a few extra hours here and there and been hyper flexible with them in regards to coming to the house and doing extra stuff for them when they have travelled.

We will review at the end of summer in regards to fall employment.

I am not afraid of that, although I felt a momentary twinge of fear, it went away fast.

Forget you fear, even should the family decide to not run with me as their nanny and I really can’t see that, although, who knows, come this fall, I will find other employment or it will find me.

l have ten years of nanny experience and I’m getting a Masters in Integral Counseling Psychology to be a Child Psycho Therapist.

Who the hell wouldn’t want to hire me.

Yeah, humility, not always my strong suit, but I certainly don’t need to be anxious about employment, I have always, always, always been taken care of.

As long as I put my recovery first, everything, absolutely everything has followed.

It has not always followed the way I thought it would, but everything has been better than what I could have planned or hoped for.

I mean.

If I had had my way, I’d still be in Paris.

But God had his way.


I’ve been back in San Francisco, making it through the crazy tech times and the boisterous economy and the sky rocketing rents.

Side bar.

My land lord sent me a text asking for my e-mail address and my first thought, was “fuck, here it is, she’s really raising the rent,” and then I remembered what my person said to me–“be positive Carmen, don’t always go to the worst case scenario,” and decided that wasn’t the case at all and sent her my e-mail.

She replied by sending me an invitation to her birthday party.



I fucking love my crazy head.


Yeah, I’ve been doing a lot of that practicing being positive.

“You seem to be coming through this whole Burning Man thing, the not going, really, really well, I am so impressed,” my person told me last night.

I reflected.

Yeah, it was hard and I was sad, but it passed quickly and I know, really deeply, that there is something else I am supposed to be doing, some other experience.

I don’t have to know what it is.

I just know that I need to have the experience rather than Burning Man, otherwise I would be going to Burning Man.

There are no mistakes in God’s world.

I’ll go next year.

And what with confirming my full time employment with the family I was also asked to go with them again to Stone Tree, the place they rent out for weeks in the summer for a part of their summer vacation travel plans.

I will once again be up in Sonoma, outside of Glenn Ellen for a few weeks come this summer.

They go twice, once in the early summer and then again right before school starts back up for the boys in August.

I also found out that they will be traveling to Oregon, but I won’t be going with them, I’ll stay back, do some house work and then.


Maybe Wisconsin?

I have really felt a pull to see my best friend from back home and what with my other friend being in Minnesota not too far from the Twin Cities, I may kill two birds with one stone and see a couple of dear friends.  I have to double check dates and times.  I won’t get paid proper vacation time for it, but I’ll get a short week, 28 hours, for their time away and I will still get my full week of vacation time for my second year school retreat, also in August.

It looks like summer is going to be big regardless of what I do.

It’s not here yet though.

My sparkling clean house attests to that.

First the weekend.

Yoga in the morning, shower, breakfast, coffee, writing, meet my person.



My date.

Eek a mouse.

Finally here.


It’s the weekend.

I am officially arrived.

Thank fucking God.


Sex and Chocolate

November 29, 2012

Yeah, I bet that got your attention.

It certainly got mine.

I was heading toward Charles de Gaulle Etoile, Metro Line 2, this evening and I passed what may be my favorite Patisserie and Boulangerie.

It smells so good.

I wrote a poem about it yesterday:


Patisserie in Your Pocket


Sex that tastes of chocolate and bread.

Smells of wood burning at dusk, cold

wind tries to tussle underneath.  Red

cheeked, ruddy nosed, I try to hold


you in my chest, tight, like nesting

birds after the sun has gone to bed,

close as the saucer to my resting

cup cooling after foamed hot milk bled


from silver canister to bowl.  Jazz

soiree in my heart dances still

with you and we never pirouetted, has

that thought occurred to you, will-


fully distant, ghost of breath haunts

me yet, even in Paris, in a café, it taunts.


I walked past the boulangerie, I do not stop.  I have nothing to partake there any longer.  And I thought of him.

“Glad I didn’t take you to ‘Flour and Sugar’,” in a text to me after our first date.

I do not eat either.

I quipped back, “at least you didn’t take me to ‘Vodka and Cocaine'”.

I was unexpectedly hit with the smell and all the good meals I got to have with him before heading over here.  And I had a brief scent bath walking past the boulangerie and it came unbidden, that is what sex would be like with him, it would be like how bread and chocolate taste together.

Some one who has lived here in Paris longer than I exclaimed out loud, “what?!  Bread and chocolate?”

Ah yes, a good baguette torn apart warm from the boulangerie wrapped around a dark piece of good chocolate, may be the best thing I have ever eaten.

I have no hankering to eat it again, I rather like how I look without the excess weight that a lot of bread and chocolate will do to me.  And, no don’t ask me if I can have it in moderation.

No, I cannot just have one cookie.

That is rather like asking, “can’t you just do one line of cocaine?”


I have also had that question asked, which makes me chuckle.

Not so much.

However, I do like the way bread smells baking.  It has to be in my top five smells.

1. Wood burning on a cold night.

2. Warm bread just pulled from the oven, brushed with melted butter.

3. Coffee steeping

4. Bacon frying in a pan

5. Lilacs on a warm night

The boulangerie of which I speak is not just a regular bread bakery, it is also a patisserie, so it also has tartes and cookies and chocolate cakes and sugar crumbled fairy star-dust, and it is striped pink and white and has bright red awnings.

It looks like a confection.

I walk by it about two, sometimes three times a week.  It is near the Anvers Metro stop and when I go to Charles de Gaulle Etoile–which will basically drop you right off at the Arc de Triomphe–I go past it.

Even closed it wafts sugar sweet chocolate drop dreams onto the sidewalk.

I imagine that is frequented often, it just smells way to good to not be, plus it is catty corner from Square D’Anvers which has a children’s play area in it and is mobbed daily with nannies and au pairs.

Then there is the something that takes my breath away, seeing a man and a little boy this morning walking hand in hand toward the park, both buried deep in their mufflers, it’s getting cold here (it might snow this weekend!), the little boy had a pastry wrapped in white paper clutched in his mittened hand and there was a smudge of chocolate on his nose.

I could have just scooped him up and licked his nose.

Papa might have been a little taken aback.

The French, they take their chocolate very serious.  There is a specialty chocolate shop (there are chocolate shops everywhere) I pass on the way to the St. Sulpice Metro line and they have hippopotamus heads carved, life-size, thank you very much, in cacao in the display room.  And the original picture, which shows a huddle of hippos, is propped in the front window.

I wonder where the other hippos went?

Swimming in a chocolate lagoon.

How come the Simpson’s never go to Paris?  I could see Homer dancing a soft shoe shuffle through the arrondissements with  a beret and a striped shirt and chocolate smeared all over his face.

I so digress.

The smell of the boulangerie reminds me of the Mister, and it makes me think not of eating bread but of having a sleep over.

Damn it.

I do not believe there will be any sleep overs here.

Not when my room-mate is sitting in my room with me reading online news about Syria.

There is no privacy here.


Ah well.

Not that the French men who have approached me have been exactly available.  Although I was flirted with quite a bit tonight as I hit the Metro going to Etoile.  He sat down next to me and he was definitely attractive and he smiled and said I was “tres charmant” very fuckable.

Um, I mean, very charming.

He said a few other things and he was flirting and I had to go and of course, I had been thinking about bread and chocolate and sex, the sex that never was, and I must have been oozing hormones.

He got off at the same stop as I, which is not actually unusual, it is a really busy stop with a lot of connecting lines that run along it, and he followed me up a set of stairs and then he turned left and I ducked right.

And promptly got lost underground.


I am not really remiss that I lost the man in the crowd of the underground, but I am a little over the longing for some one in another country, another continent–it smacks of a pattern that I have had for a long time and I am not interested in having it any longer.

Time to let that go to.

Time to be here fully.

I can still enjoy the smell of the boulangerie, then walk by and get on my way.

I gotta go Mister.

I have got a book to finish.




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