The rain is Paris has been kept at bay for most of my trip. I really can't complain for having one cold day in a series of sun. Today I had to adapt my plans at short notice, due to the fact that most of my excursions were planned for outside. The heat from the bistros was the only thing keeping my ears from freezing.
Having come from a country where an African Spring, currently in drought, means shorts and a t-shirt, let's just say I packed for summer. Luckily it gave reason to buy something more fashionable to keep warm.
Shopping is somehing I never even think of doing in Europe. Strangely enough, apart from the low value of the South African Rand, it was still possible to find something in my budget.
While running from the rain, I popped into a coffee bar at peak lunch time. It turned out to be an amazing experience. I watched as the barista moved his arms like an octopus in all directions between making four espressos and taking orders. Standing there It felt like I was blending into the chaos and it felt great.
Yesterday in Montmartre, familiar to some for films like Amélie and Moulin Rouge, the drizzling rain made me feel like I was back in the belle epoch (I have to watch Midnight in Paris again, since now I can relate). Art Nouveau everywhere and the smell of coffee and dark caramel kept drawing me into each bistro and café. In the end I found the best way to beat the cold with a boozy Crépe au Grand Marnier, a flambéed crêpe drenched in orange liqueur (see short video clip below).