Currently September 2021

Currently | 9.28.21

Life in the Age of the Queen

I am happy to say that I am writing this from Paris. It is our first return after 17 months with lots of cancellations in between.

We originally had a direct flight from Raleigh to Paris but the Queen has disrupted routes, so without enough butts in the seats the consolidated flights resulting in ours being canceled. For our flight to JFK from RDU, our pilot for the Paris leg sat across from us! No risk that the plane would leave without us!

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The flight drama is part of a long list of problems Mr. Misadventures and I have faced lately from the IRS to the FAA to Sony to Apple. Last year was a total bummer, but 2021, with the death of my father plus everything else, it has been truly terrible. Luckily during my 50+ years on this planet, I haven’t had a lot of years like this.

On a positive note, Mr. Misadventures got his French passport ruined in record time (even if it meant driving to Washington DC and back 2 times) and we got our CDC cards converted to the EU/French “Pass Sanitaire” very quickly as we sent our info in the day it was announced that French citizens could do this. The 2nd wave was for non-French and they were so overwhelmed with demand that they stopped being able to do it so Americans have to convert their cards in a pharmacy once they get to France.

orange airport chairs

Of course, this trip to Paris is of course very different

We are staying very low key, we shopped for our own food, not doing many restaurants or indoor activities, a luxury that is easy for us having been to Paris more than 50 times. We don’t need to do all of the touristy things, we just wanted to be in Paris and walk the streets and enjoy the Parisian air. And we got so lucky to arrive on the annual day without cars! We could walk on the streets – even the Avenue des Champs-Élysée to see the wrapped Arc de Triomphe – although we didn't walk all the way up to it as the crowd was too large (we went back during the week to see it up close).

I can’t believe we’ve already been here for over a week! Our weekday routine has been to get up and out of our apartment between 6:30 and 7. We spend our morning visiting and photographing spots that I am going to write about. We are back to the apartment between 11 and 11:30 (after walking 6-8 miles) and eat lunch. I start working (for my real job) at 12 and finish at 8 or 9 pm.

I took a half-day off last Friday and we ate lunch out at one of our favorite restaurants, Comme Chez Maman in the Batignolles area of the 17th arrondissement. Our apartment the first week was also in the 17th so it was perfect. The restaurant opened 11 years ago. We started coming 10 years ago and it was our 5th visit. It was as delightful as the first time, something you can’t say for every restaurant as the years progress.

Saturday we walked 12 miles around town and changed apartments and arrondissements. We are now in the 11th arrondissement just around the corner from Rue de Charonne near great local restaurants, the metro, etc. Now in a different locale but doing the same routine for this week.

This coming Saturday we leave for our favorite part of France, Brittany. We have spent weeks in the area of Cancale and St Malo. This time we are spending 2 weeks making the area around Morlaix our home base. I will still be working so I have carefully planned our half-day trips during the week and we can go farther on the weekends.

I’ll tell you the rest next month!

Now, onto September and what's been going on in the Misadventures world!

Watching | The ends of multiple shows

> I flew to Phoenix in August and finished season 5 of This is Us (it was so-so, but I will watch the last season) I also completed Top Chef 18, I missed this show so much and have never seen a season where everyone was so nice! One the way back from Phoenix I watched season 7 of Grace & Frankie (love this show even though it is super kooky!).

I am a huge fan of the Fast & Furious franchise and waited an extra year to see F9, but they really went off the rails on this one! I will watch the next and final movie, but 9 made me very sad.

Can't Wait to Watch:

The last Daniel Craig James Bond, Dune, season 2 of Morning Show, the 4th Matrix movie, season 2 of Emily in Paris, and this movie from Julie Delphy called The Verge.

Reading | The Coldest Case

Haven't got too deep into the 16th Bruno, Chief of Police Novel book from Martin Walker, but I am already sucked into The Coldest Case. I will finish it before I leave France with dreams of visiting the Périgord. Same thing I always do after reading about Chef Bruno's daily life in this region of France that has 4 seasons and lots of amazing food.

Can't Wait to Read: Provence, 1970

I picked up Provence, 1970: M.F.K. Fisher, Julia Child, James Beard, and the Reinvention of American Taste because it was on sale, and love the idea of these American chefs, legends, and authors hanging out together in France, particularly during the year of my birth!

Best Bite | Barrio Queen

Barrio Queen guacamole
Photo credits: Barrio Queen

I didn’t publish a Currently post in August but if I had I would have mentioned how thrilled I was that there is now a Barrio Queen near where I used to live and when I was visiting my mom we got some takeout. I was worried about the quality. X went from her original restaurant and airport spot to X locations and most times that means the quality goes down, but chef Silvana Salcido Esparza’s guacamole and Cohinita Pibil were (still) fantastic.

Working On | New Paris Content

We have 2 weeks in Paris and a whole list of things to visit and shoot or reshoot for updated Paris stories coming to you. Paris has changed a lot, some for good and some for bad and I'll be bringing it all to you in the next few months!

Feeling | Lucky…and green

I can't describe how it feels to finally be out traveling again. Travel is in my DNA and the past 18-months have been hard – as they have for everyone. I feel very lucky to be in Paris right now. I don't take it for granted and I am being extremely cautious.

pistachio croissant

I also feel lucky to be in Paris during a time when there are pistachio croissants! I am always on the lookout for pistachio eclairs, which are my favorite but have not been able to find any so far. Honestly, I am not scouring the city for them, just looking in every patisserie and boulangerie window. Instead, I have found several places with pistachio croissants and for the sake of research, I am trying them all out!

Loving | California 

Made In California_George Geary

Yeah, I know. I’m currently writing from Paris and I live in the Raleigh-Durham area but there are things I miss about California. Not the expense, not the traffic and long commute, but the food, the service, and the attitude of people. I am able to reminisce with [gifted] Made in California by George Geary. My parents grew up in California and my Dad specifically ate a lot of those all-American franchises that you could find in California. He spent his hours after high school vacillating between Nations for the best hamburger in America (according to him) and Casper's hot dogs. Growing up, we never visited my grandparents in California without eating at both of these classic joints…and usually more than once. I don't know what is more iconic, the material George Geary wrote about or the man himself. This book was a great read!

I am also enjoying my single-source California garlic from Simply Origin [gifted]. I shared my love for turmeric on Instagram and have finished the bottle, we cook with a lot of turmeric! The garlic I have been using in my marinades and nothing beats Gilroy garlic! California has the best stuff!

Favorite Photo | Ahh, Paris

statue in Montmartre with a mask on it

We have taken 1,000's of photos in the 10 days we have been here. But I will just leave you with this one. The region of Île-de-France where Paris is located has a 74% vaccination rate and the Pass Sanitaire (QR code you show to eat in restaurants, etc.) so they are taking things seriously.

Published in August + September

That’s my month, what’s CURRENTLY going on with you?

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orange chairs in airportParis Eiffel Tower in the 7thpistachio croissant

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  1. Amber Myers says:

    It sounds like things went well in September. I watch This Is Us as well. The last season starts in January!

  2. Lisa Martin says:

    I’m excited for you that you get to travel again. Though, like everything else, there is bound to be a few hiccups and you seemed to hit them all! Good luck with the rest of the trip!!

  3. Tara Pittman says:

    That is funny that the pilot was on the same plane as a passenger. Enjoy your stay in Paris

  4. This looks like a pretty amazing month, I would love to visit Paris.

  5. Monica Simpson says:

    Grace and Frankie has been recommended to me. I’ll have to finally watch it!

  6. Kathryn Olson says:

    Just returned from 10 fabulous days in Paris. Always rent an apartment….makes me feel like a local! My favorite city in the whole wide world!

  7. Richelle Escat says:

    I bet the pistachio croissant taste great since you’ve seen it there a couple times. And pistachios are so delicious.

  8. So happy for you, Andi! I know being back in France must feel amazing. Wish you could pop over to Ferrara before you leave! I’ve been remiss with my blog and social media reading and had not heard about your father. I’m so sorry.

  9. Ana De- Jesus says:

    Aw so glad you got to go back to France after all this time. And I love that you got to experience it like a local, and just enjoy the Parisian vibe.

  10. Ivan M. Jose says:

    You’ve had so many beautiful experiences in September. I didn’t know that there is a new James Bond movie coming out. I feel so out of touch with the rest of the world.

  11. Sounds like September was pretty good for you. I can’t believe it’s already almost October already. It’s so hard to believe.

  12. Sounds like you have had a lot of travel ups and downs. That is scary to have issues with your passport like that.

  13. ERICA MURDOCH says:

    I’m eaten up with envy reading this. In Australia, our borders are still closed and no idea when they will reopen. Can’t even travel beyond 15 kms from home ( this isn’t for the whole of Australia- just where I live ). So people like you give me hope!
    Love your blog.

  14. Everything Enchanting says:

    Sounds like you had a great month! Enjoy your stay in Paris and that last photo is so pretty 👌🏻😍

  15. June Rives says:

    Hi Andi or should I say “Salut”? I lived in Paris for 10 glorious years and yearning to get back. Author Martin Walker is a friend of mine and with another expat friend Terrance Gelenter, does a trip to Le Bugue where Martin lives and the surrounding area of Perigord. I would be happy to put you in touch with the two of them. Avec bien cordialement, and PROFITE en France! June Rives
    website: rivesbooksparis.com

    1. @June, bonjour and merci! It is so nice to meet you and I will have to discover your books! It is very kind of you to offer to introduce me to Mr. Walker and I am unfamiliar with Mr. Gelenter but I see that he lives in Paris and I am always looking for expats to interview about Paris. I will send you an email directly after my trip is over. Merci and looking forward to touching base with you!