Who gets to be happy today?

Traveling is wonderful and trying.  Having 3 kids spanning the teen years is wonderful and trying.  Change is constant and although the age difference is not big, it is huge when you are 12, 15 and 17.  Today was Josh’s day to be happy.

We were running late because we had to make lunch, where Josh had to eat, and then catch a movie.  Josh had misplaced his metro card and I refused to leave until he found it.  Voila.  He was very apologetic which is big for Josh (could it be that he is growing up?).  So I said, let’s take a cab so we can stay on schedule.  As we were riding over the bridge, I couldn’t help myself and take a picture.  There in a double decker tourist bus was quite a large man and all I could say to the kids was…what do you think, American?  Awful, yes.  True, probably.  But, the picture is priceless. 

Fred went to Berlin for the day to do business.  Emily still has Reuben here which is great.  No need to worry about her happiness level.  Jessica and Josh and I got up and went to Cafe Charlot which is located in the Marais area to have lunch.  Josh saw this place yesterday and really was hankering for a burger.  I get it but when in Paris, do not be an American.  It will not be the same or taste the same.

The restaurant has a great vibe.  The eggs looked really good but we failed to notice that after we had ordered.  Josh had a cheeseburger.  Not the Spotted Pig….shock.  I had the special of the day which was a salmon carpaccio with a salad that was tasteless.  Jessica went with the tuna tartare and salad which was not good either.  But, Josh got his fix and seemed happy with it.

The weather was beautiful but Josh wanted to see a movie.  I get it.  He is 12 and in Paris and he needs his 12 year old boy fix.  Jessica left us and hooked up with Emily.  Josh and I went to Les Halles Cinema and saw Forgetting Sarah Marshall.  Incredibly forgettable.  Also, Les Halles is the Paris mall.  Think 34th Street in a mall.  It is awful.  Honestly gave me an anxiety attack.  Jessica hooked up with us after the movie and couldn’t run faster from the area.  I believe I read somewhere that the city was going to knock down the area and rebuild.  God I know hope so.  It is a just something to be avoided at all costs.  Yuck, yuck. 

We walked over to the Palais Royal and went back to the vintage shop, Gabrielle Geppert, that is fantastic.  The woman has owned the shop for 6 years and has built quite a collection.  Some of it isn’t even for sale.  I ended up buying a vintage clutch and Jessica, as hard as she looked, couldn’t find anything.  It just wasn’t her shopping day. 

We left and went home.  Jess, Em and Reuben went back to the Marais, we seem to get that area daily, to have dinner at Cafe des Musees where Fred and I had lunch this week.  We were all going to hook up and go to the Eiffel Tower afterward but rain is coming and the wind is picking up so Josh and I bagged.

Josh and I went to Cafe Constant for dinner.  Mostly Americans are in there although a French couple did sit next to us.  No reservations.  Not that expensive.  Simple menu.  Completely reminded me of Florent.  All good, nothing great, nice place.

On one side of us were 3 people.  One was a girl who just turned 18 from South Orange who is going to college next year with her Dad and probably uncle.  Mom had to work.  It was nice to talk to them.  I couldn’t help but put my New York hat on and give them a variety of recommendations of what they should see in Paris before they leave.  The girl couldn’t have been more thrilled.  It was nice to be able to point them in the right direction.  Obviously the amount of research we do is not what most people do.

A nice night.  A basic day.  I am beginning to feel a little bit like I live here. 

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