Apologies for being so quiet – and more apologies in advance for the splurge of posts to come! I had a few technical contretemps between the 9th and the 14th so I had to go back to the UK. It really was a nightmare, you know. Visiting my family, having mum’s homemade food instead of cooking for myself, getting to see some of my jiujitsu club… oh, the stress of it all! Anyway, that week was pretty much a write-off, and I’ve not been able to post up until today as I’ve been a very busy bee, but voilà, finally here :)
Despite looking forward to getting back into the swing of things in Paris, I was feeling a little downhearted saying goodbye to Liverpool on Sunday partially down to a series of unfortunate events prior to my departure. Although I’ve posted a recipe for tarte(lette) au citron, I’d originally prepared a much bigger version topped with meringue, for my family to eat after I’d gone back to France. Unfortunately I got so tied up with packing that I forgot about it in the oven – it didn’t look very pretty when it came out but here’s a nicer version to make up for it!
Monday was good fun, as a friend from Liverpool, Alex (whose blog you can check out here), came to visit. After a lot of métro changes, we finally met with Henry at a very lively soirée de jazz in Café Saint-Maur not far from Parmentier. The place was pretty full, the music was good and the atmosphere was buzzing, so I’m hoping to go again this Monday!
I had a coffee with a tutor from Liverpool on Tuesday morning, after which I tried my utmost best to avoid the métro for fear of running into le tireur fou de Paris. Alex and I discovered a mouse in a tea-house later that evening! We, not including the mouse, shared some thé à la vanille, thé noir à la violette and some macarons à la rose et au caramel au beurre salé. Although the tea couldn’t have been more awesome, I still want to go to a Mariage Frères maison de thé at some point soon (I’m sorry but they have tea called “sexy tea” –sexy tea!) Also, to sip: prendre une petite gorgée
Wednesday was spent doing a bit of cooking and revising. After making a tarte Tatin, Alex had been asking about a Japanese pâtisserie by the name of Sadaharu Aoki, so we rushed to the gourmet section of Galeries Lafayette where we arrived just in the nick of time, picked up some sort of green-tea-flavoured choux-bun, then ventured towards the Quartier Latin. On the way, we had a look at les vitrines Noël des grands magasins (note to Ms. Carabine – féerie) We arrived at La Fourmi Ailée, where Alex very kindly shared her cheese platter with me.
I had lunch in the CROUS cantine with Chloé on Thursday and Alex came over to the apartment to show me some sketches and to tell me about her cat adventures in Montmartre cemetery. After some slightly-too-spicy-soup I’d made earlier that day, camembert and freshly-baked bread from Les Soeurs Sucrées downstairs, Alex had a tarte Tatin and I ate some biscuits all the way from Liverpool from Somaia – and that was about the whole of the week!
Être à la bourre = Être en retard. This is a phrase I use quite often! It used to mean that one was extremely poor. The phrase initially came from a betting game of two-four people using cards, the game being called ‘bourre’. If one player was unable to raise the others after a number of hands, he would then declare himself as being ‘bourru’. It was another way of saying that you were ‘lagging behind’ in the game, which is why it now means lagging behind in the literal sense.
I’ve also thrown in an extra thing I learnt recently seeing as these past few weeks have been a little quiet… For anyone learning French, the spelling can sometimes be tricky. For example, why is ‘les œufs’ pronounced ‘lay-zeuh’ (IPA: [lezø])? In ‘moyen’ French, the consonant ‘s’ at the end of pluralised words was pronounced, unlike in modern French. Saying ‘fs’ in ‘œufs’ would have been a mouthful so the ‘f’ was just omitted in speech, and the spelling was kept the same to avoid confusion. Later on, the ‘s’ of pluralised words wasn’t pronounced and ta-daa! ‘les œufs’ = ‘lay-zeuh’ :)