Catching up on the honeymoon, we had taken the Bohemian Tour and Arthur, our tour guide, had given us the info for a restaurant that he recommended as a good “closer” for Paris. He recommended Le Relais Gascon. Told us how to find it and sent us on our way.
We took the Metro to the Pigalle station and exited to the street. Because it was hard to understand every word that Arthur said , we basically were going to be winging it once we got off the train. I did hear him say something about a hill. We looked around and noticed a hill. So we walked up it – by then we had gotten really good at hills. At the top of the hill and at a crossroad, there stood Le Relais Gascon. We had found it. We sat outside, as we did just about everywhere in Paris. It had gotten a wee bit chilly. I once more indicated Je ne parle pas français and they said, no problem and brought us English menus.
One thing that we got on our Honeyfund fund raiser was “Wine in France and Beer in Belgium.” So to satisfy that and to have a picture to thank JayCo & JenCo with, we had a nice rosé and we enjoyed it. We then ordered appetizers. The BCPF had a whole avocado covered with grey shrimp (basically bay shrimp) and a house-made Russian dressing. She said it was great. I had pâté and it was quite flavorful.
Then on to the entrées. The BCPF had chicken with mushroom gravy and potato chips (not like the crisps we eat out of a bag, but grated potatoes). She didn’t really care for that, she said. I had steak tartare. 4 nights in Paris, 3 nights of steak tartare. I was addicted to that stuff. Three different restaurants with steak tartare and three different ways of preparing it. All three tasted different. This one was more Worcestershire based. That’s not a bad thing, I like Worcestershire sauce. I’m not really sure if that’s what it was but it did taste like it. It was delish! However, I’d still say out of the three this was my least favorite; but still delish. On to some dessert!
The BCPF had chocolate mousse and, as she sits here while I write this, said it was go-oo-oo-oo-ood! I had a banana split and it was yummy but nothing spectacular. As usual, I finished my meal off with a snifter of Grand Marnier. Overall, we enjoyed the restaurant but it wasn’t our favorite of Paris. We made our way back to the Metro station and back to our hôtel (the proper French way to spell it). A great end to a great day.
The next morning we make our way down to the lobby where we awaited a driver to take us to the train station so we could move on to our next destination. We got to the train station and had some croissants and coffee. Something about French coffee, it doesn’t wig out my Tourette Syndrome like caffeine-laden American coffee. Which is good, because I didn’t want to be jittery at that time. The reason for that is there was a presence of armed French officers, either military or police carrying the machine guns, just like under the Eiffel Tower. I’m supposing the ISIS threat at the time in Europe led them to that, but I’m not really sure. We also saw the apprehension of a thief. Thievery is apparently an epidemic in the train stations. I know we told the same beggar woman “allez!!” several times and the same to another bum. Homeless people I feel for, bums, I don’t.
Finally, our train arrived and again, we had first class tix. We put our bags in the racks and rode on to Brussels so that we could take the connector to Bruges. Whilst riding we had come pastries, tea (me) and coffee (The BCPF). It was about an hour and a half and quite peaceful. I spent time trying to update my blog, but the WiFi on the train was spotty. Present, but spotty. We arrived in Brussels and had to figure out where we were supposed to pick up the train to Bruges. The train station in Brussels is but one reason why I hate that city; it is so darned confusing. I had to ask one of the rude workers in transportation which train I was supposed to get on because the only thing that they have that indicates trains is the Departures and even though we were departing we couldn’t find the right train to be on. Anywhat! The worker told me to just get on ____ train (I can’t remember which one) it leaves at ____ time. I thanked her and she just nodded. Anyway we wait and wait and wait for the train. It arrives and we get on in a bum-rush of people. Stuffing our luggage under and in-between seats, we sat down breathing heavy and worn out but ready to move on.
We arrived in Bruges and worked our way out to the taxi stand and waited in line to get a ride to our hotel. The driver loaded our bags and drove us to a lovely old hotel. On the way there, all on cobblestone streets, he pointed out several churches, a brewery, pointed us in the direction of the square, etc. A very good driver, he was. And… I’m going to stop here for this episode. A good tease, that’s me!
Up next what happened in Bruges and let’s just say it involves some beer. We’re in Belgium, dangit!
So until tomorrow, same blog channel…
“Paris is a place where, for me, just walking down a street that I’ve never been down before is like going to a movie or something. Just wandering the city is entertainment.” – Wes Anderson