An American in Paris —
Monday, June 26, 2006
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Dear Parler Paris Reader,
One night I turned on TMC (The Movie Channel) to watch for the almost one-hundredth time, “American in Paris,” with Gene Kelly and Leslie Caron. Although the film was made in a Hollywood studio 55 years ago, the American in Paris story hasn’t changed. In fact, many of the same scenes seemed to recreate themselves just this very week.
Fête de la Musique Wednesday night, as it seems to happen every year, held up under a cool and rainy June gloom. Aside from the stunning performance by Mayra Andrade from Cap Vert at the Hôtel Sully with soft gold and lavender lighting in harmony with the gentle sunset at about 10 p.m., I was amused by several unusual and amazing performances.
One was from a group of nine-year-olds with acoustic and electric guitars and drums, not playing very well, but acting like cool dudes we are sure will grace the rock stage in about 10 years. Meanwhile, under the vaulted arcade of the Place des Vosges, lyrics handwritten on sheets of paper were being passed around so that hundreds of people crowded together to sing Karaoke style. “New York, New York” was my favorite, especially in that adorable French accent: “Dese leetle town bloos aah melteeng away, I’ll make a braan neyou staht of eet, een ol’ Neyou York…”
At Place Saint Catherine, a large cir
Thursday night I was escorted by three handsome men to the Opéra Garnier for the annual black-tie Gala of the ballet La Dame aux Camélias accompanied by cocktails and following dinner. The Opéra Garnier committee honored Madame Jacques Chirac and Madame Georges Pompidou that evening, surrounded by such luminaries as the Baronne Philippine de Rothschild, Comte et Comtesse de Ribes and the Prince et Princesse Pierre d’Arenberg.
There were beautiful women in elegant evening dresses and debonair men dressed impeccably for the black tie affair in the gilded halls of the theater that sits like a wedding cake in the center of the city. I could only fantasize about being one of the many aristocrats on the list of attendees (while sucking down champagne and gobbling delicate canapés) and it reminded me of the scene in American in Paris when broken-hearted Jerry Mulligan retreats to the balcony at the Beaux Arts Ball, overlooking the vast scene of Paris at night.
Saturday was a day I look forward to every year — the annual Gay Pride Parade of about 100 supporting groups that starts at Montparnasse and finishes about six hours later spilling into Place de la Bastille. The merriment and “gaiety” is addictive, as men and women of all ages, sizes,
In 1951 when American in Paris was released, Gay Pride as we know it today didn’t exist. Twenty years later, the Gay Liberation Front organized a march in New York City to celebrate the one year anniversary (June 28, 1969), of a protest against a raid on a gay bar known as the Stonewall Inn. The Stonewall riots are generally considered to be the beginning of the modern gay rights movement, as it was the first time in modern history that a significant body of LGBT people resisted arrest. On the same weekend gay activist groups on the West Coast of the U.S. held a march in Los Angeles and in San Francisco…the events that led to our own Paris parade.
Paris was the perfect backdrop for this week-long revelry and celebration, as it was the perfect subject of Jerry Mulligan’s canvasses. Oh, to be an American (or any other persuasion) in Paris.
A la prochaine…
P.S. We’re setting our sights on San Diego, California in September for the next Living and Investing in France Conference, September 16 and 17! There is nothing else you can do in less time and as inexpensively to learn the important facts you need to know to get you on the right road and in the right direction for a successful investment and life in France! Stay tuned for more information in upcoming Parler Paris issues or email Schuyler Hoffman at email@example.com to be on a special mailing list to be notified.
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Learn how to buy property in France. French Property Insider is an e-mail newsletter from the editors of Parler Paris. Learn all the insights, recommendations, and discoveries about buying and investing in real estate in Paris and France that French Property Insider readers get every week.
Excerpt from the Insider Paris Guide for Good Value Restaurants
This is a bistrot well off the beaten track where only Parisians and their closest friends will be found. Behind a façade that appears to have once been a boulangerie, Aux Zygomates has packed in as many tiny square tables as possible into two tiny rooms, but no one seems to mind being elbow-to-elbow with one another. The noise level moderate to feel comfortable speaking at normal tones. Frosted etched glass panels and large Venetian mirrors surround you adding old-world charm. The menu written in an ornate French script takes a moment to become accustomed to, but once you can read the words, they jump off the menu like magic. You will find making the choice difficult. A few daily specials are also sure to catch your eye…for all delicious details, see the guide.
Yes, you can have a great three-course meal with wine and coffee in Paris for between $15 and $40 including tax and tip! Take Adrian’s advice…and discover more than 200 of the best-kept restaurant secrets in Paris. Get your copy of Insider Paris
Guide for Good Value Restaurants now. http://www.insiderparisguides.com/restaurants/index.html
* The Taos Writing Salon, July 15-20, 2006. Join James Navé, Allegra Huston and guest faculty in spectacular Taos, New Mexico for their annual writing salon — a cross-disciplinary writing adventure designed to energize, deepen and extend your writing practice.
Parler Paris Apartments
Located in a 17th century Le Marais Hôtel Particulier, this 70 square meter two-bedroom apartment with lots of light is nicely furnished and is perfect for a single woman in the freshly renovated guest room when owner Adrian Leeds is in or for up to 4 people when she’s traveling.
* “Le Provençal” Studio: Available as of August 2006
Located in a very charming and quiet 18th-century building in the heart of Le Marais, this sunny studio is perfect for one or two seeking ultimate Parisian calm, flavored with the beautiful colors of Provence.
* Parler Paris Apartments rental representation at ParlerParisApartments.com. If you have a property ín Paris you’d like to keep booked and represented properly, please email Adrian Leeds at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Come for a drink and to meet and chat with other readers in Paris:
Practice speaking French and English. Make friends, discuss interesting topics, learn about other cultures, progress in understanding and speaking, naturally and easily. Meets three times a week — come as often as you like.
“An American in Paris — Making Music, Dance and Proud Gaiety”
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