Cafés are a classic and critical part of Parisian life. Sitting on a terrace in the sun enjoying people-watching, or posted up inside cozily with a book, it’s one of my favorite things about life here.
And I have found my café! They even know my order now. I feel very at home (it’s the place pictured above, Le Barbouquin which is just a few blocks from me). It’s part bookshop, part very hipster café and reminds me of my days living in Portland, Oregon.
French cafés are the most relaxing because they don’t mind loitering. Once your café créme has been dropped off, the waiter will politely ignore you until you signal to them for either more caffeine or l’addition. It’s certainly a change from the sometimes fawning and over-bearing American customer service, but it leaves you in peace to do what you want with your time.
As a person with a deep love of (and addiction to) caffeine, it’s also wonderful to live in a place where coffee is around every corner. Even if it’s sometimes terrible (it’s getting better though!). And when you walk about 10 miles a day as I have been lately, getting that fix while you sit down is a little bit of heaven.