Thursday, July 12, 2007

Thursday Thirteen #9

Totally not fair!!

A vegetable stand at the Rue Mouffetard market in Paris.

View from Pont Neuf of the Eiffel Tower when it "sparkles" every hour on the hour.

Evening view of the Eiffel Tower.

Last week we posted 13 things we love about our hometown, Lansdowne. This week, we decided to let mommy and daddy post thirteen things they loved about France (even though we're still a little mad at them for leaving us!).

Mommy and Daddy went to France for two weeks. They were in Grenoble and Paris. Both places were wonderful. Here are thirteen things they loved about the beautiful country of France. (They may have to do this in installments because there were soooo many things they loved about France it's hard to pick just thirteen.)

1. The French people. People were so nice and the french hospitality was unsurpassed. Even in Paris where some folks think people are rude, the french people were very kind and welcoming. It was amazing how many english and american people were not even trying to speak even a little french. This is not a good idea. Learn a couple of key phrases and make an attempt to speak the language - it goes a huge way towards fostering relationships with the locals.

2. The Eiffel Tower. Really, it's amazing. Mommy and Daddy visited it twice while they were in Paris. They went to the second level and saw it both at night and day. It sparkles every hour on the hour for 10 minutes at night. They say it's just magical. It's incredible to think that it was built as a temporary exhibition and was intended to be torn down.

3. Croissants. These are delicious little buttery pasteries that mommy and daddy ate every day. Sometimes twice a day!

4. Cheese. It's really true. The variety and quality of French cheese is spectacular. Even in the grocery store, the amount of different cheese you can buy is just amazing. Mommy and daddy tried several different kinds of cheese but some of their favorites were Livarot, Camembert, and St. Marcellin.

5. Wine. Mommy and daddy say that they "fell in love with Bordeauxs" whatever the heck that means. Sounds pretty snooty to us but according to them, they now have glimpsed into the mystique of delicious French wines.

6. Cafe Life. Again, sounds pretty snooty to us but they say that you can't beat the French way of life where you can go to a cafe and just sit for long periods of time drinking and eating and watching people. They went to cafes nearly every day. Some favorites in Paris were Le Buci, Cafe Marly, and Cafe Deux Magots.

7. Abbaye de Leffe. Ok, mommy and daddy feel pretty dumb about this but they didn't think there would be many great beers in France. They were wrong. There are many and they come from neighboring Belgium (mommy's favorite type of beer). One they feel in love with was called "Abbaye de Leffe." Beans should try it. It's good.

8. Champage. We never had this but Mr. Chen thinks he would like the bubbles in what mommy and daddy say is the kind of "sparkling wines" from the real Champagne region. Almost everywhere they went in France, they were served champagne to begin an evening. This is a very, very nice way to begin a night.

9. Baguettes. Done right, baguettes in France are amazing. Mommy and Daddy said they'd never had anything like it before. crunchy on the outside but not so crunchy like in the US where you can hurt your teeth. Soft on the inside but not chewey or gummy and with the most delicious flavor. Best bought daily of course!

10. Snails. Ok, now this is just not fair!! Ollie tries to eat a slug and gets in trouble and gets half of it yanked out of his mouth mid-bite. But mommy and daddy can eat snails from their shells in France and this is somehow acceptable???! Apparently, if you call them escargot it's ok to eat them. If you call them slugs or snails, it's not. That's a silly bean rule if you ask us.

11. Butter. French butter is just different. Must be the happy cows of Normandy!

12. Produce. The variety and amazing color and deliciousness of the produce is unbelievelable. Between the amazing things found in the supermarket to the wonderful open air markets, the bounty of fresh fruits and vegetables in staggering.

13. Parisian architecture. So you don't think that this TT is completely food related, mommy and daddy wanted to tell you how beautiful the buildings and museums and churches in Paris were. The entire city is just wall to wall with gorgeous, eye-popping architecutre that is not to be missed. Maybe they'll post more about this in a future TT.

We hope you've enjoyed this TT about France!


Jeter and Mickey said...

yer TT made mi mom wanna go to france.
i woulden't want her to go becuz she wood havta leev me home alone wid mi brudderz an sistah ... an i wood miss her.
luv--yer frend--jh

Chairman Mao said...

Ai yi, I wanna eatta SNAIL! I wanna eatta SNAIL! They sound so yummy.

My momma loved readin' yur list -- I wanna eat snails, she wants to eat cheesies and krissants (heck, I can't spell...), and she wants to see alla the purr-etty stuffies, too. She sez it sounds like yur parents hadda wunnerful trip!

Kittyhugs and purrs from MaoMao!

Dragonheart said...

Wonderful post! Both of my humans have been to Paris, and my dad has been to Grenoble. They enjoyed their time there, but were happy they weren't driving. ;) The architecture in Paris is amazing! My humans hope to go back and visit more.

They will disagree on the beer though - although Belgian beer is very, very good, the best beer in the world is Bavarian! :)

Daisy said...

I want to go to France, too! And eat some of their cheese. And have a snail. It sounds very wonderful there.