Saturday, July 28, 2018

The cool came back, just like that!

I'd seen the predictions.  The change was not unexpected.  Still, when it happened, we were excited.  The heat wave lifted, just like that!
View from our friend's home-exchange vacation apartment.

As if Mother Nature made a flick of her wrist, her weather wand sparked, and a stiff yet gusty breeze magically appeared in the early evening.  A few dried leaves on the sidewalk flitted this way and that.  Minutes later, the rain that had been threatening broke through the heavy atmosphere.  The thermometer dropped ten degrees F.

The air, which had been laden with bad ozone, became light and cool again.

All of this happened as we sat in Eclectic with our friend, W, having drinks.  The panoramic view of the riverbank through the restaurant's sweeping windows presented far away lightening bolts, big raindrops splashing forcefully, dramatically, on the pavement, people -- smiling -- dashing for cover.  Other people sauntering, delighting in being suddenly wet and cool.

The staff threw open Eclectic's two doors.  The cool breeze was a welcome addition to the air conditioning.  We heard thunder sounding as if it were in a muffled echo chamber.

Having drinks at Eclectic, in Beaugrenelle.
The three of us were so comfortable and happy at Eclectic that we decided, after an hour of drinks, to stay for dinner.  Tom and I ordered the Friday special:  moist, soft poached salmon -- with rice for me, and with fries for him.  W had a Burratina appetizer and indulged in the delicious bread.  W asked me what Burratina is; I replied that it is like Mozzarella, only much better.  One web site calls Burratina's taste "dreamy."

Afterwards, we went to Monoprix because W still needed a few necessities for the apartment where she is staying on the right bank, in the 16th, almost directly across from Eclectic, where we were drinking and dining.  She is doing a home exchange for her vacation, so a young Parisian family is enjoying Sanibel Island right now.

The Beaugrenelle Monoprix renovations have been completed since we were last there.  I'd say the renovation is a big success.  It is what you'd expect a Parisian grocery store to be -- attractively chic, practical, and reasonable.
View of the Statue of Liberty and Front de Seine from our
friend's home-exchange vacation apartment.

The walk from Monoprix to W's home-exchange apartment wasn't long.  We crossed the Seine on the Pont de Grenelle, where the Statue of Liberty stands, passed the Ogre restaurant that Tom and I would like to try sometime, and continued around the corner to the apartment building -- which was very similar to a building where we once had a home-exchange apartment for a few weeks, years ago.  We had exchanged our former rental house in Gulf Shores for that apartment, so that must have been somewhere between 2003 and 2008.

That apartment, too, belonged to a young Parisian family.  But their small children are now nearly grown ups.  That's what happens when a decade flies by.

The view from W's place is splendid.  The Seine, the Pont de Grenelle, the Statue of Liberty, and the Front de Seine.  If you lean out the window, you can even see the Eiffel Tower.

I could sit there for hours, watching the barges go by and the tourist boats turn around the Statue of Liberty end of the Ile aux Cygnes.  But we left after a brief visit and walked back down the avenues.  We'll see W and others on Wednesday.

By the time Tom and I were home, we'd walked 4 miles.  Not bad, considering that the first third of it was in 100 degree heat (but only 29 percent humidity) and air full of bad ozone.

Today, the air is clear and cool (in the 70s), with a pleasant and persistent breeze.  Peace.

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