Friday 30th October 2009
It’s been a while since I updated this in which time I broke my golden rule and joined a social networking site but I digress. This morning found me at Paris Charles de Gaulle bleary eyed after a rather pleasant overnight flight (thanks, Delta). That in itself was interesting – five hours into the flight, the moving map display stopped updating so when the lights came on in the dark cabin and it was black as pitch outside, one seriously questioned a breakfast service – much like a midnight feast. Checking the map, it said there were over three hours remaining. The may however was wrong (and we arrived with over three hours still remaining).
Approaching Paris, the city was blanketed in a thick impenetrable bank of fog, yet thanks to some decent flying and good instrumentation, we hit the centre line of the runway right were we should have. Good job I wasn’t flying NorthWest or I might have ended up in Poland. Claudia met me at the airport which was great although it meant an early start. The Paris train system is relatively efficient and reliable (when no strikes are in progress).
Breakfast at the apartment consisted of brioche, almond pastry and coffee (lots of coffee). After briefly unpacking, my next priority was to get online (which I did) and get connected to the work VPN to check on things. Remote desktop is a great thing even if Toad can act up somewhat…
From the pictures I posted last week, my latest culinary delight has been “100 things you can do with stainless steel that non-stick just won’t do”. I had tormented Claudia since then with tales of my adventures with peppercorn sauces and other delights involving searing and cognac.
Since Claudia’s apartment does not have a decent frying pan, our afternoon quest involved the purchasing of some decent free range steaks, a good peppercorn assortment and some other minor items; the crowning glory was a trip to Dehillerin, the famous chef supply store where copper and stainless steel pans are in abundance. We left with an excellent stainless 11 inch pan which would suit my purposes and as it turned out, the steaks were excellent.
Taking the metro to Les Halles, we exited the station into a labyrinth maze of mall stores that best could be described as retail hell. There was literally no easy escape from it as it’s clearly designed to keep one trapped until all funds have been depleted. Fortunately, being cunning rats, we avoided the cheese and exited, blinking, into the daylight.
On the way to the cookware store was the St Eustache church which was quite interesting and being late October, very quiet. As with most European cities, you turn a corner here and stumble upon something magnificent like this almost everywhere.
All photos from today are located here (Flikr).
Tomorrow – a few museums and more pictures. Have a fun evening.