Paris - very good! Nice easy journey there, Business premier thanks very much. Ate too much of that delicious bread and salty butter in the lounge, and cracked on with the task in hand for some of the journey. We walked the distance from Gare du Nord to our apartment in Montmatre, very doable.
The apartment was at the back of an old Parisienne square, quite quaint, with a theatre to the front, and some lovely little individual shops to each of the other sides. It had a dishwasher! Bathroom was gleaming and really it was perfect in every way, apart from the soft beds. Too, tooo soft for either of us, leading me to miss quite a lot of sleep, and have a lot of pain in my back for both days. Other than that, a really funky Reception where you can borrow all sorts of things from a rice cooker to a scooter, and it's 2 minutes walk from the tubes and buses, although there's plenty to do, see and eat in the very immediate area.
Friday we finished our respective reports and then headed out to Chez Toinette. Lovely little sub ground floor bistro style restaurant, with mostly French customers. This has rave reviews, so I was really looking forward to it. As we'd eaten cheese in our apartment, no starter, but he had a beer and I ordered a gin and tonic. Somebody was dispatched to a shop to buy gin, which was weak and not at all what I would expect from a good restaurant. This was followed by a very long wait for our steak Bavette. Now, most of the fantastic reviews are about this steak, frankly it was chewy and not worth 24 euros. However, the sauce it came with and the potato dauphinois were absolutely fabulous. But his was almost cold. We decided not to stay for dessert, a tad disappointing.
Followed by a stroll round Pigalle, Paris's Soho. OMG it's OVERPRICED. We hit a few sex/clothing shops, and were gobsmacked by the astronomical prices. NEVER buy anything here, it's all cheaper in London and cheaper still from Ebay!
Never underestimate the value of good cheese and cheap wine in your apartment!
Saturday Rod was snorry-purring until gone 1, so I left him, he looked peaceful and he must've needed the sleep. In the afternoon, we went on foot to the flea markets. Some of it a misnomer. There's a lot of Hackney Wankerish gentrification gone on, with very chi chi and pricey outlets, more obscenely priced than Brick Lane. Then you come to the vintage part, good, but again vastly overpriced, and then eventually to the rough street stuff, under the Periphique flyover. Quite an eye-opener, and interesting. I'm amazed at what people sell.
Saturday night he'd chosen Le Bon Bock, literally around the corner from the apartment. A marvellous, old fashioned emporium. Absolutely brilliant. Again, the food wasn't as great as you might have though, albeit half the price of other establishments. But the service was excellent and we both loved the atmosphere. Authentic, and full of locals. So a win.
Sunday morning was lazy, lazy sex, lots of coffee, music and just chilling, and then packing. After which, we headed out to Montmatre Cemetery. An odd choice for some, but I love them, especially when they're fabulously Gothic, like this one. Some serious edifices here, a lot of them gradually becoming derelict. We found some tributes left to Dumas on his tomb, quite touching really. And the resting place of Adolphe Sax, inventor of the saxophone, and various other French artistes, playwrights, high falutin' folk and of course Nijinsky. A fabulous wander.
Lunch was 15 euros for 2 lovely, freshly made pizzas and coffee in IT Clichy, a zingy Italian brasserie. Modern and clean, everything on offer looked wonderful. And then a cheeky salted caramel tiramisu, just because.
So that was Le Rod Weekend in Paris. Which I really enjoyed, and feel relaxed and happy about, so does he.
I hope we are able to do somewhere else soon.
Tonight, my sole bit of TV has been Baldrick on a train, which I adored. Such amazing and colourful places. Sometimes I think I shouldn't watch these things as they just fuel an unaffordable wanderlust! A bath and body oiling, cooked up a smashing stir-fry and did some chores. It's been a busy catch-up day at work, but I was firing on all eight cylinders and powered through it.