With summer approaching, I can't help but dream of traveling to exotic places. Anyone who knows me knows that I have a deep desire to go to France. I've never been to Europe, but
if when I get the opportunity, France is at the top of my list. Here is why ...
1. The Food
Um ... hello! First of all France is known for their pastries and I love pastries. I've been particularly fond of les macarons lately and the nearest place that makes a good one is a 25 minute drive from my house. I have a suspicion that the ones sold at Ladurée in Paris is beyond amazing and I must try one for myself! If you have never had one, find out where the nearest bakery or chocolatier is and get one! They are not the same as a "macaroon" or coconut cookie, they are an entirely different experience altogether.
I had the pleasure of eating this pistachio macaron from Moonstruck Chocolatier in the Nob Hill district of Portland over the weekend. Truly divine. And don't get me started on the sea salt caramel macaron I also scarfed down!
A trip to Poilâne for a loaf (or two) of their iconic bread is also in order; followed by a real French croissant, a tasting of actual champagne, a bite of unpasteurized Camembert, and something with chocolate and espresso to follow. Whew, anyone else getting hungry?
2. The Language
Everything sounds sophisticated when spoken or written in French. Take the word "airport" for example: in French it is "aéroport". See, it's fancy!
This summer I am taking French Grammar & Conversation through my local Parks & Recreation department and I am stoked. If I am fluent enough, I'm sure I could pass for a French woman. I have pale skin, dark eyes, and my pointy nose naturally makes me look snooty. I would just need a pair of Louboutins and a small dog on a leash and I can blend in seamlessly.
3. The Shopping
Photo from elle.com
Speaking of Louboutins ... yes, I would like some please. And if I could purchase them IN Paris that would be even better. While I'm at it, add a Chanel gown, a Givenchy pencil skirt, an Hermes Birkin bag, and anything from the Celine Fall 2011 collection. Of course unlimited funds would be necessary for this to happen, but I'm pretty sure even window shopping would be a dream come true.
4. The Lifestyle
I could get along quite nicely in a place where poppies are considered weeds. Poppies are my favorite flowers and evidently they grow wildly there. I've been reading a fantastic blog, designmom.com, where a mother of a big family moved to Normandy recently where she rents a farmhouse surrounded by peonies and lavender. She even has a separate art studio where she does her graphic design. Sigh. It sounds like she is living le joie de vivre over there - a simple but interesting life. Two-hour lunches that include wine sound good to me as does a hop, skip, and jump on up to jolly ol' Britain for the weekend.
5. The Arts
When I studied graphic design in school I had many art history and architecture classes. I learned about the different parts of a gothic church, the pointillistic style of George Seurat, and the playful and ornate look of Rococo design. It has been my dream to lay my own eyes upon these things. To see firsthand the colors of the North Rose Window of the Chartres Cathedral or to walk in the garden of the Palace of Versailles. I know, I'm such a sap!
There is a possibility France may not be all that I've built up in my mind to be. But even if it isn't, I will never know unless I find out for myself.