Started From The Bottom Now My Whole Team Here: Paris: Day 1

October 21, 2013
Even the best laid plans---and my plans are nothing but such, you'd never see me charge into battle unprepared or heaven forbid do so and then moan about the less-than-desired outcome---can come crashing down on you like Jenga bricks. In my case what was to be my Paris trip with Max complete with detailed, themed itinerary was all for vain when he was waylaid in a war zone for another week or so (no biggie) rendering him quite unable to partake in our friendly rendezvous. However, when God shuts a door he opens a window, or rather I simply kick the door down, so rather than cancel my stay in Paris (never order a non-flexible Eurostar or apartment with strict cancellation. Just don't) I asked India to come with me instead. And so she did.

"If you escaped what we escaped you'd be in Paris getting f-ed up too!"

Last Tuesday we pulled into Gare Du Nord at 7pm and dashed to our apartment in the nearby 10th arrondissement---James (HK) calls it ghetto, I call it the Parisian equivalent of Dalston (Ahh, you arr London 'ipster? Tres bobo!)---to meet our host (the lovely Romain) and a quick change of clothes before heading out for dinner at Les Parigots. I found this place with a Google search of "Paris + hipster + awesome + steak tartare" which happily was around the corner from our apartment, a sign that it was meant to be. Also, now you know my three of my favourite Google search words. *unabashed*

James, our enthusiastic and amazing London crew member turned cool part-time Parisian made a fabulous entrance on his bike, looking very European in his ponytail, upturned trouser cuffs, and no socks. The very moment he glided and stopped right at our table on his bike, never taking his feet of the pedals greeting us "Hi guuuuuys!" was quite special, I wish I had captured it.

We had a late dinner, I'm sure you can guess what I ordered. India ordered her first of many burratas of the trip, I suppose for her new blog 'India's Burratas Of The World'. That blog does not exist, but I think it should.

My steak tartare, what can I say? Fresh to death. Mon dieu, I want this so bad.

Dinner sorted, we moved on to Le Marais for the obligatory Parisian nightlife crawl. 

Le Mary Celeste was on my to-do list, least of all for their €1 oysters. But we had missed the 5-7pm window so we settled for cocktails and pudding.

I use the word 'pudding' most loosely, while India opted for a more traditional choice of apple compote I had 'parfait de fois de lapin' avec confit de raisin muscat et focaccia maison (I'm guessing that translates to rabbit pate with muscat confit and house focaccia).

...and some very strong cocktails that contributed to the raging hangover that haunted me all of next day.

We never stay in one place for too long, not while we're on holiday, so India used her mermaid prowess to summon from the watery depths an ocean-themed car. I'm kidding. We walked, and James...walked his bike in a most unusual way.

Just so you know the 'girlfriend' I'm referring to in the video is his bike, not India. I have decided that his bike girlfriend's name is Simone. And I hear she's a great ride.

We found ourselves at Jackets, a rock bar in Le Marais. The bartender was a dead ringer for Ryan Gosling, the sofas were squishy and low, the 'tables' weathered old trunks and the floors sticky. For a second I thought we were in Jaguar Shoes in Shoreditch. Oh, and you hang your things on the wall because why not, there's a reason the place is called Jackets.

We quickly got bored and moved on to Le Montana in St Germain des Pres for a taste of what was in store on Thursday (the best and busiest night in Paris apparently, just like London).

Around about midnight James had to go home to sleep and wake up fresh for work, so India and I bade goodnight and headed back to our apartment to join Romain for a little house party. 

I didn't take any photos of the guests because I'm not sure how comfortable perfect strangers would feel about having their photos posted on my blog---this isn't London or Kuala Lumpur where I knew exactly who the posturers and camera-shy are---so I minded my manners and kept my camera stashed neatly in my 2.55. But I did dance up a storm with India, and we did endear ourselves to the Parisians with a) crazy dancing (Thees Eeenglish girls are crazee! C'est magnifique!) and b) speaking perfectly accented French and c) knowing all the lyrics to Yelle's songs. A perfectly faked French accent and an arsenal of memorised French song lyrics, that's all the language skills you need to go far at a Parisian house party.

Sometime before dawn we collapsed into our beds, blissfully unaware of the fatigue to hit us the next day. Stay tuned.

"Started from the bottom now we here...started from the bottom now my whole team here!"

More Parisian adventures to come.


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