Monday – I am starting to get used to the European way of writing dates…
Another big outing! Well, first a livaison – Monoprix Delivery. It has become tres facile for me now. This was my third delivery – time to stock up on all the big volume and or heavy items – milk, OJ, paper towels, etc. And herbs and spices. Also time to break a hundred euro bill.
Catch 22. I stopped at a bank – BNP: the place for Bank of America cards. They told me no they could not break a 100 euro bill. Go to Monoprix. So today at Monoprix, I tried. Was sent from one register to another. The lady, politely but firmly, said they were not a banque. I did tell her that the bank sent me there. Oh well, I purchased an item for 8 euro and got change. I use my credit card for t he delivery items. No wasting cash on them, especially with cards that have no foreign transaction fees. The two Chip-and-Pin-guaranteed cards I got for Europe still are disappointing. Neither work without “signature” in stores. One will work for less than 20 euros at the Metro but it doesn’t ask for a PIN. The other will work with a PIN at the train station. And I guess that’s the most important one.
I find I am getting by quite well at the grocery store. I couldn’t find bouillon cubes. I repeated POULET several times and when that didn’t work, I did the chicken dance. Well, NO. Not the entire chicken dance – just one arm bent and ready for the squawking. He led me straight to the bouillon cubes.
Back home waiting for Monoprix, I catch up on one more blog and then sit down to read Suite Francaise. I wanted to finish it before I saw the movie but the movie is now in very limited release here. I didn’t go when it was in all the cinemas. However, this caused me to discover the Cinema Chaplin in the 15th arrondisement. Still a bit confusing – but I think they show a ton of films that have finished their wide play. So it was there today at 1415. Proud to say I have discovered a new bus, the 80. And it stops almost in front of the place (after I change from the 82 but you know that’s my favorite!). I have a feeling I may be back here often.
Before the film, there were ads. One in particular stood out – Kevin Spacey driving a Renault. He referenced his former roles and current on in House of Cards – funny if you know his movies. I have heard that some actors won’t sell things in the US but don’t hesitate overseas (there was a Bill Murray movie about an aging movie star in Japan but it escapes me). The film was shown in VOFST. Version Originale. English with French subtitles. I really like to see films this way as it gives me a idea of how they translate the English. Tomorrow I am going to see the Jardins du Roi with Kate Winslett. Well, not with her! She’s in it. Going with someone I met on Edith’s lectures.
As for Suite Francaise, I have very mixed feelings. The book – the part I have read to this point – was nothing like the movie. And I didn’t really like the movie all that much. It was interesting. But no more to me. So I shall continue reading. I really like the book/translation’s use of words.
Coming back, I decided to stay on the good ole 82 to the end of the line. That’s in Neuilly-sur-Seine at the Hopital Americaine. And clearly I live in the lower end of Neuilly. This place is supposed to be the Beverly Hills of Paris. And have the highest per capita income. The photo to the right is the Neuilly City Hall. My southern end by Porte Maillot is certainly not a slum, but it’s not the wide boulevards, gracious mansions or new apartment complexes of the north east. I did discover some nice parks a few bus stops away.
The bus continues to be an adventure. At one stop, the bus driver turned the bus off, got out, hit something a couple times, got back in and we went on. And down another street there were parked cars on the left and a BIG truck on the right. The driver actually opened the door and looked out to check his clearance (about 2 inches). I begin to worry when the seemingly fearless Paris bus drivers show concern.
And later, on the way home, there’s suddenly an announcement and the digital signs says: A new destination. It was going to the Luxembourg Gardens. Now it was stopping at the Place Juin 18. Really? How can they do that?