Paris Fashion Week

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Angie Harmon at Paris Fashion Week

Today began with lunch, which was had at an outdoor table in a café near the Opéra National de Paris. Strains of jazz floated from the bar inside as the passersby glanced in at the bright red tables. I ordered a Croque Madame and read one of my novels, while occasionally glancing up at the Alexandre Herchcovitch fashion show on TV, part of the Paris fashion week channel’s coverage. Yes. There’s a whole channel.

Little did I know that just an hour later, I’d be in the midst of Paris Fashion Week myself! You see, I had hopped over to the Jardin des Tuileries, and was wandering about taking pictures of trees when I noticed several well-dressed photographers taking picture of even better-dressed models who seemed to be walking to an event (which turned out to be the Elie Saab fashion show). I sat myself down on a nearby bench to see how this situation would develop. While I sat, I was approached by a lanky model wannabe who had mistaken me for one of the event’s coordinators. Probably because of how fashionable I am. She was looking to get discovered and I was looking to have an adventure, so we stuck together.

About 15 minutes later, the Running of the Fashionable began! The crowd of photographers had grown and for whatever reason, the runway models and other chic attendees (including Angie Harmon, pictured above) walked back and forth between venues right out in the open amongst all the tourists. And because I now had a terribly tall and well-dressed friend (I felt this lent me some legitimacy), the two of stood in the middle of it all, snapping pictures left and right. The clothes and people were stunning, the weather was lovely, and the entire scene was simply steeped in chic-ness. It was a glorious afternoon.

Afterwards, I meandered home through the streets of Saint Germain des-Prés and Invalides. Dusk had fallen and the lights of the buildings’ apartments were quietly lit, offering a glance into the elegant apartments within. Ah, la vie parisienne! Below are my pics from the Paris Fashion Week – enjoy!

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Je suis arrivée!

First dinner in Paris

First dinner in Paris!

Je suis arrivée – I have officially arrived in Paris! After a fairly confused taxi ride with a well-meaning driver, (who didn’t speak English and then got lost) my two overweight suitcases and I have beat all the odds and made it to France in one piece. So as soon as my current novels were neatly stacked on the bedside table, I donned my most Parisian outfit and ventured out to explore the neighborhood.

My first stop was La Défense, the business district. As it’s Sunday, this maze of glass towers, tunnels, dead-ends, and bridges was eerily deserted. I assumed everyone was home eating cheese. Luckily, my tower is easy to find, as the company name is displayed proudly right across the top! The second stop in my exploration was Île du Pont, a small island park in the middle of the Seine. When a surprise rain shower hit, everyone took cover under the still-green trees. From under my willow tree, I watched several French couples peek out from under the branches, planning their escape routes. It was a delightful moment and I’ve decided to hide under trees more often. Last in my exploration was Neuilly, my soon-to-be stomping grounds. Filled with tree-lined streets and gorgeous old architecture, the neighborhood is in every way Parisian. And I discovered that my apartment is directly above a supermarket – let the fun begin!

Then in preparation for my first Parisian dinner, I wandered the streets, searching for the perfect baguette. This proved to be a challenge, as there is a boulangerie glowing warmly on every corner, each more delightful than the next. I selected a small bakery with a line curled around the counter and a happy couple munching on baguettes in front of the window. Buying a single baguette (in French, mind you), I tore off the end to eat right away, as instructed my darling sister. And as I strolled down the leaf-covered sidewalk, the baguette peeked jauntily out of my bag, seeming to hum happily: “Bienvenue à Paris!”