As I am here, part of what I want to do is not only experience Paris but also experience it in such a way that I can be of assistance to others visiting the City of Love.
So I wanted to come up with a list of "assignments to help encourage me to get some of these things done. While most of these will be about food, I want a lot of them to be about getting to know the city better in other ways as well.
I am sure that I will come up with so many things that I may not be able to complete all of them, but I was also hoping that some of you who read my blog would let me know what you think would be interesting to examine further.
Here is what I have thus far.
#1. Find the best croissant
Since I just talked about how great the French croissant was, I think trying and comparing some of the most famous croissants here would be both fun for me, and informative for everyone!
#2. Explore the fresh, street markets
Paris is known for having incredible street markets. This is something that happens regularly all throughout the city and is a huge part of a Parisians daily and weekly life. I know that by going to these markets I will get to learn a lot about the Paris life and culture.
#3. Go to art exhibits
Paris is famous for their art scene. It has the most famous art museum in the world, the Louvre, for starters. During my first visit to Paris I spent three days at the Louvre because of how extensive it's collection is. I have always loved art and was blessed enough to take two years of art history in high school, giving me a deep connection, appreciation, and understanding of art. But aside from the Louvre, Paris has multiple special art exhibits and I would love to experience them while I'm here. An upcoming exhibit is the Cezanne Et Paris exhibit at the Musee de Luxembourg, available from October 12th thru February 26th.
#4. Compare Pierre Herme and Laudree Macarons
Macarons are all the rage right now in the states. But in Paris they have been popular for much longer. While the history of the macaron is up to interpretation (some believe it originated in Italy, while most die-hard French insist it was a French invention), there is one fact that cannot be denied. When it comes to macarons there are two heavy-hitters competing for the title of all-star, number one, top dog. This is Laduree and Pierre Herme. I would love to spend a day, week, month, or even the rest of my time here, doing a taste test of all the different flavors these two infamous establishments have and decide for myself who really is the best.
#5. Pastry Tour
When you come to Paris there are numerous pastry tours you can sign up for where you are taken to all the top notch pastry shops. I, however, would like to sift through all the famous shops and decide which ones are really worth going to, and hopefully find some hidden gems to toss into the mix as well. I want to know for myself, and for friends, family, and strangers visiting, where the best places to go are, what I would recommend at each establishment, and what fun things one can do around each shop.
#6. Go to Paris flea markets
Since I have hopes and dreams and since those hopes and dreams will end up costing me a boatload, I am trying not to spend too much money while I'm here. It's tricky because there are so many beautiful things and it is easy to justify it thinking, "This is a memento of my experience here that I will treasure forever!" Not to mention the fact that this is an extremely expensive city and a single macaron costs over a euro in most shops. But I do want to attend a few flea markets while I'm here and hopefully find some wonderful deals that are too good to pass up. If I'm lucky you'll see me on Antique's Roadshow in a few years.
#7. Discover at least 20 new cheeses
France has over 400 different types of cheeses with numerous varieties of each type. That's a lot of dairy. Since I really could live on bread, cheese, and wine, I know I would enjoy sampling as many varieties of cheese that I could.
#8. Paris on a budget
This is something that I not only want to do but that I need to do. As with any big city there are bound to be plenty of great places to eat and shop that aren't going to devour your budget. I'd love to uncover a few of them while I'm here and share them with all of you!
This is all I have for now. This list will undoubtedly grow and grow as time goes by, and please let me know of any missions you have for me to undertake.