I finally joined the American Library on Saturday and really hope that the staff hasn't already labeled me as that desperate middle-aged woman looking for love. Admittedly, I wasn't very discrete. As soon as I had my new library card in hand, I rushed to the books on Paris and started pulling any of the ones with words like "romance", "passion" and kiss" in their titles off the shelves to do some research for this pre-Valentine's Day post. To dilute the steamy theme and make me seem less fervid, I threw in a few decoys, a couple of books about Americans in Paris, but the astute young man at the check-out desk wasn't fooled. Carefully averting his gaze from mine lest I interprete a meeting of our eyes as an invitation to pounce, he kept his attention firmly focused on his computer screen when he printed out my receipt.
While the library clerk may have been somewhat alarmed by my one track mind, love and romance is obviously a hot topic. Just take a look at some of the titles: The Best Places to Kiss in Paris, Naughty Paris: A Lady's Guide to the Sexy City, Every Woman's Guide to Romance in Paris, Paris Passion Places and Romantic Paris.
Thanks to these delicious books, I learned some passionate phrases that they don't teach in French 101 like, "Je me jette à vos pieds" (I throw myself at your feet), which you obviously only do with someone you don't know that well because the author uses the formal "vos" rather than the informal "tes". In that case, I guess that it would have been perfectly appropriate for me to whisper this phrase to the library clerk after flinging my body on his shoes, while I should save the more familiar "Je rêve de toi" (I dream of you) for Stéphane.
It was interesting to note the frequent crossover of restaurants (Le Grand Véfour and Le Train Bleu), cafés (Café de Flore), tearooms (Maison de Mariage Frères), museums (The Erotica Museum and Jacquemart André Museum), and famous couples (Abelard and Héloïse) in the books, but Naughty Paris takes things a step further by revealing where to go for female-friendly toys, male striptease shows and pole dancing lessons. As the library lends books for 3 weeks, I'll soon be an expert on everything and anything to do with love and passion in Paris.
What's your favorite spot for romance? It's Valentine's Day tomorrow and I'm still looking for ideas!
Update: Normally Stephane and I don't go out for dinner on Valentine's Day, but after reading about Le Train Bleu we decided to try it since he's arriving at Gare de Lyon tomorrow evening. As it was already fully booked, we're going to the appropriately named Je thé...me, a play on the French words for "I love you", instead. I'll let you know how it is.
|Bassin de la Villette|