It all started with a simple question.
“Why don’t you come to Paris with the group?
You love Paris and had to cancel your beauty tour this year due to the terrorist attacks from November and people's fears.
Come with us.”
This came from my friend Claire about a weekend in Paris with her upscale travel company. The group had planned to attend the Janet Jackson world tour before she canceled. As with everything, the party must go on, and the bubbles must flow on. I was hesitant. I am in the midst of a kitchen remodel due to a busted pipe and taking a weekend to jet set wasn’t on the agenda. Plus, that means I would have to relinquish some of my kitchen remodel control to the husband. Yeah right.
After mentioning it to him he said, “You should go.” Best. Husband. Ever. Well, you don’t have to tell this Francophile twice. Plans were made and in three weeks later I was leaving to visit Paris. I was a little hesitant because this would be the first trip after my surgery in November. I kept thinking who would help me put my carry-on in the overhead bin, would I be able to walk around all day and feel okay? I decided to go and not overdo it.
I arrived on Friday and hit the ground running. The best thing for me to do when I travel to Europe is not to go to sleep when I arrive even though I don’t sleep on planes. Yes, I’m going to be exhausted, but I can be exhausted in Paris. I arrive early in the morning and stay up all day. I go to be on European time and not any sooner. This way I can hit the ground running and not lose any time. I left the airport, grabbed an Uber and headed to the host hotel near Gare du Nord. I checked in and headed to a little brasserie for an omelet. No one makes omelets like the French. After a few café crèmes, an omelet, croissant, and good conversation it was time to assist and help the UITAL staff get ready for their first event.
When Up in the Air Life puts on an event it’s going to be special. We had a picnic in front of the Eiffel Tower and a group photo. Everyone received the cutest wine picnic cooler bag. I can’t wait to use it in DC for Jazz at the Sculpture Garden this summer. Later that night we all met for dinner at Rosemary, a restaurant I suggested. I keep a running Paris food document and it has been on the list for a year. It’s considered a gastropub and among the many bistros of Paris, it held it’s own. We were a large group, 40+ travelers and it’s very hard to find a restaurant that can accommodate that many people.
The food as with most French food is small portions full of flavor, texture, and contrast. I told Julien who helped organize the dinner I would be back in October for a friend’s birthday and planned to bring her there. I enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere, the way they went out of their way to accommodate such a large group, and how the night flowed effortlessly. Stay tuned for my recap of our time in Champagne, France.