Monday, October 22, 2012

A New Road to Travel

Deux chevaux, my dream car in France
After a fruitful and memorable summer 2012, I have decided to Move on a bit further down the road. I left Oregon on October 5th with my first stop being Paris, France, home of Lance Armstrong’s infamous Tour de France doping scandal. Luckily, I did not wear my US Postal Service cycling jersey as I had intended before leaving Oregon. Instead I stuck a pack on unfiltered Gauloises cigarettes in my shirt pocket, wrapped a silk, lavender scarf around my neck, flashed my French passport, and passed customs without notice. One can never be too careful when it comes to preserving national integrity. (see link below)

Deek frolicking in le Jardin du Luxembourg
 I arrived in Paris too late to catch the train to my friend Carmel’s house, so I spent the night at the Hotel Sunny, a clean two star hotel on Boulevard du Port Royal on the edge of the Quartier Latin, close to the metro St. Michel. Marie and I rarely stopped in Paris, opting to “bite the bullet” and take the train directly to Brittany.  But I love exploring Paris, and this trip gave me one night and a full morning to wander around and absorb what I could. Le Boulevard du Port Royal is full of small cafes and restaurants, and even though dining by myself is not one of my favorite things, I decided I must do it for the sake of those friends who might read this blog. How could I hope to have any credibility with my readers if I did not indulge a bit in the culinary delights that France has to offer? Besides, indulging is something I do quite well! The things that a person will do for friends! That night I came across a small Lebanese restaurant on Rue St. Marcel where I had a plate of eight different Lebanese delights, a glass of tasty red wine (filled to the brim the way I like it), a plate of warm pita bread, a double serving of baklava, and un petit cafe express, for twelve Euros! My stay in France is already worth the trip! Anything from here on out is frosting on the cake.
 The next morning I headed off to le Jardin du Luxembourg, a beautiful, green space in the center of Paris where I spent a few hours frolicking and sketching. It was a gray, autumn day, and I decided to thank Marie for opening the door of France to me by doing a sketch in her honor. Being true to her belief that sketching is not about producing beautiful drawings, but about capturing a moment, this is what I did that morning. 
Chez Carmel, Cazals, le Lot
Later that afternoon I boarded the train in le Gare d'Austerlitz with destination Gourdon, the nearest stop to Carmel's place in Cazals. And Voila! that is where this posting stops, pulling up in front of Carmel's house in anticipation of an apero of good French wine, creamy goat cheese on a fresh baguette, and some fine conversation with a dear friend. 


Arun Toke said...


Fran said...

Vive La France! Love to the lovely Carmel. Any chance of coming our way?

Gregg said...

I look forward to following your blog, Dick. You're clearly off to a great start. Red wine, blue shutters, and a very green car. Merci! --Gregg

Janice said...

Dear Dick,

I want to thank you, on behalf of all of your friends, for doing the hard work that needs to be done while you are abroad. After all, SOMEONE has to do it. And while I know that your actions are completely selfless, without any thought of personal gratification, I myself am grateful that someone I know is able to indulge in the gustatory delights of France.

Keep up the good work!

Love, Janice

Bill said...

Dear Bro,
Please don't send me a silk, lavender French scarf for Christmas! A silk union suit perhaps????
Your obnoxious little brother!

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