Wednesday, 20 March 2013


Look! Springtime!


It's everywhere now. It's positively refreshing, especially since the weird killer allergies I got here last year haven't started up yet.


It's the most amazing time of the year.

The sunglassed-decked masses head out to the primo real estate that has been under-appreciated for months now; outdoor cafes and parks.

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I wandered up to the Parc de Belleville. Belleville was once a hilltop 'burb, but became part of the city of Paris some time ago. Very working class, it is famous for being the place where Edith Piaf was brought into the world (and she is buried nearby at Pere Lachace) and the neighborhood featured in "The Red Ballon". Since the 1960's, it's undergone much urban renewing, with lots of big, soulless projects. Now it has a decent Chinatown and my favorite spicy Thai and Sichuan places are home here.


The park here is a very nice use of a narrow hilly space. Its terraces winds up a steep hillside and has a great vista from the top.


The grassy lawns are filled with picnicking Parisians, rejoicing in the return of the sun.

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You can see the whole city from here.


Well, almost. It is a very good lofty view. Plus, it's totally off the tourist track and there's not too much to see here.

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It's rare to get an Eiffel Tower view from this side of town anyway. I can see the pulsing lighthouse beam of light circling the sky from my bedroom window at night, but that's about it. I thought every apartment in Paris had her in the view? Misleading, Hollywood is.

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They are raising chickens near the handball court. I thought the urban chicken was only found in Brooklyn!


Afterwards: a quest for bubble tea. It's only found in the Chinatowns here, and it's generally the good fruit juice and tea variety, and not the super-sweet fake fruit kind.


There was a kind of impressive church at the bottom of the hill, and that was about it for architectural excitement.


Ah, spring. Just having the seasons change makes everything so much more pleasurable.

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