bonjour mon petit baguette

except for the last one, all shot with a fujifilm x-t10

Here is the thing about Paris in the rain: 
In the movies, you can just skip around a puddle and jump in a taxi, and your baguettes and outfit stay nice and crisp. It's all very romantic and French and seems easily achievable with the right kind of hat. In reality, you get a bit damp and a bit frizzy and your outfit looks a bit limp. (But your baguette still tastes incredible. all three of them.)

 Paris was lovely. It looks exactly like you've always wanted to, and is filled with beautiful, silent, intimidatingly chic people who have made wearing monochromatic outfits and bread an art form. They walk impossibly fast, and drive like absolute crazy people (and I'm from California). The museums are huge, the coffee is strong, and the line of people trying to sell you souveniers are seemingly endless. We were there for three days over our anniversary last week, and it wasn't even close to enough time. Much like LA and London, Paris is the kind of city I'd need to go back to at least two or three more times to even wrap my brain around. With that said, there are certainly some things we did on this trip I never need to do again (*cough* Louvre *cough, sideways glance* Versailles). 

If you trust me on this, skip the Louvre and go to the Orangerie (tickets: $8.50 pp for students) instead. Honestly, the Mona Lisa is not that impressive, and having seen it printed on every other surface known to man, seeing it in the canvas was not that much different. Monet's Water Lilies exhibit in the Orangerie is a completely different experience. You literally have to sit down, then stand up, walk in a circle, walk back, get closer, and then go clear to the other side of the room and sit down again to take it all in. It's absolutely stunning, and no photo or recreation can do it any kind of justice.

Regarding food: TAKE EVERY SINGLE OPPORTUNITY PRESENTED TO BUY BREAD. I cannot over-state how good the baguettes are, and you can buy them for around one euro in any bakery you see. They're crunchy and soft and mmmmmm. For more "authentic" French food, get as far away from any restaurant with English subtitles as you can. After getting thoroughly lost on our anniversary (we walked nearly 10 miles around the city) Jordan and I settled on this little hole-in the wall in an alley because "it had character" (translation: we were starving) and I FINALLY got to try proper raclette. It's a dish involving melted cheese, which is all you really need to know. That, and you need to always take the grill pan out of the grill when it has little bits of cheese on it because it will set on fire. Not that I did that. Not at all.

The trip ended with us literally RUNNING across the city attempting to make our train back to Germany after the Metro stranded us somewhere deep underground. I nearly lost a lung and we missed our train, but hey, it was a good story.

I'm going to write a longer post with general sort of tips for traveling in Europe (Rick Steves, watch your job) but for Paris in particular, I would recommend this: if you're traveling just to see the city, and not for work or anything, forget about trying to out-dress everyone and just wear shoes you can walk in.* Taking a taxi or uber will spare your feet but not your wallet, and you'll miss out on a lot of the everyday stuff that makes this city so beautiful. I saw many a stylish American woman falling over themselves on the cobblestones this whole city is paved with, and a rolled ankle is not the sort of accessory you want to take home. 

x Justina

*Note: this is not an endorsement for ugly "walking shoes". Just wear your normal shoes. You're not climbing Everest.

pps. this wifi is suspicious af so pardon the incredible posting delays,
 this has taken nearly four hours to upload.

follow A Bent Piece Of Wire on twitter|facebook|bloglovin


Tell me what I want to hear. Or what you want to say.

Just remember:

If you're mean, I'll track you down and replace all your shoes with those hideous white tennis things that are so popular among the very sad.