I slept pretty much all day on Wednesday. It was terrible for my jet lag, but pretty good for my illness. I’d planned on a nice leisurely lunch alone, but I’m fairly confident that all the sleep I got salvaged the rest of the trip, so I’m ok with having given it up. By the time B got back from the conference, I was feeling a little bit better and was ready to explore.
You know how in Las Vegas, everything looks like it’s short walk away and three days later, you’re still trying to reach the Mirage likes it’s, well, like it’s a mirage? The Eiffel Tower was the exact opposite. It looked like it was a fair distance from our hotel, but in reality, it was an easy walk (and that was even after taking the long way). We timed it well in that we got to see it in daylight on our way to dinner and all lit up on our way back to the hotel. We planned on going to the top, but with one look at the line, our growling stomachs after 9:00PM had another plan in mind.
We did our best to choose something at least a tiny bit off the beaten path, but after crossing the same street a couple times, we opted for the Le Champ de Mars Brasserie. I admit it had a bit of a tourist trap vibe, but everyone spoke to me in French throughout the meal and we got what we asked for, so I consider it a win.
Remember what I said about yellow photos? Well, brace yourselves for these. I just can’t bring myself to put these posts off any longer, though. At some point, it’s more important to remember things clearly than perfectly.
I made myself a promise before we left for this trip. I promised myself I would not argue with B. Not once. It comes from a stupid argument we had over the heating in our hotel room in Dublin when I realized how lucky we were to be in a place where we could even have that sort of argument. I felt like a total jerk for being emotional and angry because he wasn’t as upset as I was that the heating wasn’t working properly. So, I promised not to fight with him in France. We really, really don’t argue often and it’s always short lived, but all the same, I didn’t want this amazing experience tainted by my own fatigue, immaturity, what have you. What that means, though, is that even though we had looked at what felt like 400 dinner menus on our first night in Paris, I wasn’t allowed to get snippy or make demands. It also meant it was nearly 10:00 when we finally ate dinner.
We both finally just got tired and chose something. We’d had a nap, but no real sleep to speak of. We spent the evening wandering the Champs-Elysées just trying to get our feet under us. Finally, we settled on Le XVI de la Grande Armée. It wasn’t that late. It was after 9:30PM, but the restaurant wasn’t all that busy. We sat outside. Perhaps the biggest bummer of Paris was that they have beautiful patios that are perfect for sitting and people watching, but it’s also where all the smokers are. Le XVI’s patio didn’t have any smokers. Believe it or not, we came to wish they had.
Sometimes you just have to jump in. I’ve been saving all of these photos from France, saving the memories of the wine, the food, the people… The photos are too yellow, my photo editing software needs to be moved onto my new laptop. There are always excuses. It’s not always about making everything look just so, though. It’s about the memories, the sensory experience that’s never really captured in the photos anyway.
I have food… amazing food from Paris to tell you about, but for the moment, there’s something more important. Every now and then, something happens that is worthy of doing away with chronological order. Life’s been a little hectic lately. B lost his grandfather, work’s been insane. B and I needed an outing. Earlier this week, after some brutal dental work for me, we ventured up to Queen Anne for a smoothie for dinner. While walking around, drinking our liquid dinner, we stumbled upon Lloydmartin. They’ve been on our list for a bit. We checked out the menu and it looked outstanding. While we didn’t expect to have time for a Thursday dinner this week, we both agreed that it would make a good one if we could swing it.
Lately we’ve had lots of false starts where our Thursday nights are concerned. We get back on track and then something happens that throws us off again. This is one reason The Whale Wins was rescheduled so many times. Last week, I was bound and determined that we would make it.
This was our first Thursday night dinner visit in the neighborhood of Wallingford. That’s a little surprising given we’ve been doing this for over six years and Wallingford is really not far from home. We’ll have to come back soon.
The Whale Wins space is absolutely gorgeous. It’s sort of a combination of rustic farmhouse and beach cottage with a few fun details thrown in. It’s comfortable and engaging all at the same time.
Whether you’re just getting to know a new sweetheart or you’re celebrating your 25th wedding anniversary, planning a Valentine’s Day to remember can cause a significant amount of anxiety. You want to plan the perfect day, but don’t want it to be the same perfect day everyone else has planned. Fear not! No matter your budget, we’ve compiled a list of his and hers Valentine’s Day ideas that are sure to make for a memorable celebration free of mylar balloons or grocery store chocolates…
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Oh, Ojos Locos… My first trip to Ojos Locos came last year when my cousin, BN, took me there to watch a Kentucky game while B was snowboarding in Whistler. We called around a few places to make sure someone would have it on. The manager at Ojos Locos assured us they would. As we walked in the door, BN paused long enough to tell me “By the way, this is the Mexican Hooters.” Um, what?!
One scantily clad server who introduced herself as our “chica,” some nachos, and a circular conversation about the bar’s Direct TV package later, we were back in the car headed for Buffalo Wild Wings. No Kentucky game for us at Ojos Locos. After returning home to tell B the story, though, he insisted that I take him there on our next trip. Gee, I wonder what the appeal is?