A Parisian Café

A Parisian Café

A Parisian Café

Paris, Friday

It may not be the fanciest café in Paris, and it’s not as large as many others.  But it’s close to the apartment and it’s ours.

If you want a regular café in Paris, I suppose you could choose one several blocks or more from wherever you’re staying.  In our case, the café chose us.  I think there’s a certain mental as well as physical commitment to a café:  you choose it, get to know it, and become increasingly comfortable sitting at its tables. 

The waiter at our café knows us and greets us with recognition.  We’re not quite regular enough to have real chats with him, but maybe we will someday.  Last month the café was unexpectedly closed one day, and he told us it was because the owner’s father had died.

A chosen café may not be perfect, but it’s a satisfying investment.  First there’s the obvious one of enjoying coffee, or a kir, or a salad or omelette or croissant, while watching the Paris world go by.  It’s closer than the post office to buy a few stamps at the Tabac.  Equally or more pleasurable to me is the feeling of being part of neighbourhood life in the quartier.

The local café is a home away from home.  After being out and about in the city all day, often having a coffee or a snack in another arrondissement, returning to one’s own café brings a feeling of familiarity and contentment.   

Au revoir, little café.  See you next year.

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