Monday, March 21, 2011

Un Jour Pour Flaneurs

I've never considered posting from abroad. Not bringing a computer made that impossible this time, but upon return, why not? I found myself with a free day in Paris on Saturday. Among my favorite things in this world is a mindless mapless ramble without any particular goal. Of course if you know the city, you inevitably drift toward familiar haunts. In NY, it might be Balducci's or Chinatown. In Rome, the Campo dei Fiori, or even better the market in Prati. Always a matter of food, of course.

So how delightful that my internal gastronomic compass should direct toward Les Halles. Or at least the big stinking open pit, that even after being gone many years, still has magnetic force. Not the belly anymore, perhaps the bung? Adjacent is the old Jewish neighborhood in Marais. Most of the kosher butchers were closed. But there was Schwartz's, packed utterly to the gills and spiling into the street, or I would have tucked in for some pastrami.

Did stumble on a little market though, too early for oysters alas, sea urchins as well, but there were my favorite pine-honey candies. Still regretting not smuggling home cheeses though. A few little museums, some brightly colored marshmallows - apricot, mint, rose. And the whole day was spent. A dinner with gorgeous snails, rilettes, ruddy Chevergny - not to mention VERY frightening andouillettes. Do you know what I'm talking about here? Pigs intestines stuffed into pigs intestines. Smells like pig shit, otherwise very tasty. It's just the feeling of having intestines in intestines, in your intestines, that's philosophically perplexing.


Deana Sidney said...

Just writing about flaneurs, m'dear.... ah Paris. I got in terrible trouble trying to smuggle sausage in my boots... it is great, isn't it!!! Sounds like a delightful ramble!

Ken Albala said...

Deana, What are you writing? I've been a serious flaneur my whole life, long before reading Baudelaire, or even knowing what the word means.

Anonymous said...

some brightly colored marshmallows - apricot, mint, rose. along using the complete morning was spent. A dinner with gorgeous snails, rilettes, ruddy Chevergny - to not mention very frightening andouillettes.

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