Daily life. And Coco

Catching up with the blog – are you frantically reading it? Sorry to overwhelm you, but things just keep happening here and I want to write about the new experiences, not play catch up with last week.

Il fait beau! That means it was beautiful today! Today being Sunday. My gosh –almost 75. Hot in the sun but there was a little breeze so it was excellent. And the French came out. The parks were filled to bursting with the Parisian families out to enjoy the weather.

I headed for the Marche after a very good night’s sleep and lounge in bed this morning. Now that I am back alone, I am determined to start eating healthy.  (Coaching tip – the starting is the easy part.  I am really good at starting almost anything… it’s the achieving that can be a bitch.)

The French do not snack between meals. That’s why they have such big meals at lunch and such a late dinner. A friend who works here said she has a two hour lunch break. That makes sense here. In the States, I know so many employees wanted to skip lunch or just take 15 minutes to woof down a big mac. Oh the horror! But my problem has been that my transition to a Parisian has not been complete. So I am eating the big French meals but only tapering off on the American snacking. Yikes. Fruits and veggies, here I come.

I missed the landlady who was stopping by to pick up the printer. I like her. I would have liked to chat a bit, but she decided to come later and I had to leave. She was at the park with her husband and son. As I said, that’s where you can find all Parisians on a day like this one.

Another Edith Meetup called me. This time about Coco Chanel.

I know more about Coco than I realized. Some of it from general trivia, some from the movie – Coco before Chanel.

She came up from poverty and changed the world of fashion. Thanks to her, women can wear comfortable clothes – and we all have a little black dress in the closet.   Edith walked us around the Opera area and the Place de Vendome. And past the original Chanel boutique – still there. Shivaun had wanted to visit the Chanel museum – but it seems there isn’t one. If you shop in that Chanel store, you can look up the stairs to the room she used. Apparently there is a mirror strategically placed from her apartment to see downstairs to watch the reactions of clients. Apartment – sounds like she lived there. But no, she lived at the Ritz – the back entrance faces her store. We came around to the Place Vendome where the front entrance is normally. The Ritz is closed for renovation. Serious renovation as it was closed in 2013 – we think, based on a sign in French.   Anyone besides me remember Love in the Afternoon with Audrey Hepburn, Gary Cooper and Maurice Chevalier? That’s the hotel Gary Cooper stayed in. Love that movie. (A friend posted on FB a list of the Top 30 Romantic movies of all time. HA! Not one b&w film. Insane.

Back to Coco – she closed her shop just before the war but stayed in Paris. And took a German officer as a lover. So she falls into that collaborators horizontals category mentioned in the YSL blog.

She should have been in the group of women whose heads were shaved and who had swastikas painted on their bare breasts and were paraded down the street by the Resistance after the liberation of Paris. But she wasn’t. Edith said that she was picked up by the Resistance but was let go after a phone call from Churchill. Yup. Churchill was close friends with the Duke of Westminster who was her lover at some point. So she went to Switzerland and stayed there until she was irritated by Dior’s new fashions in the 50’s. She came back and that’s how most of us remember her today.

Always interesting and entertaining with Edith.

And a bonus – a quick dinner after and plans for a movie with a new friend, Analise, from London.


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