Monday, May 2, 2011

Books and Rainy Paris

Today I went on a roundabout walk through the silvered rainy streets of Paris, on a quest for the three books my darling brother needs for his AP exam.  Boots squelching on the pavement, I wandered all the way from Denfert-Rochereau and through the Jardin du Luxembourg to the ever-lovely Shakespeare & Co, probably my favourite bookstore in all of Paris.  More crowded than usual, probably because of the rain, I found two of the books (Macbeth and Great Expectations) that I was looking for, but because of their limited Coetzee section, I kept going, across the river and into the Marais to find The Red Wheelbarrow bookshop and hopefully Age of Iron.
The Red Wheelbarrow bookshop is run by my sister's friend's mother, and is adorable.  While it isn't as cluttered and historic as Shakespeare & Co, it feels more like the bookstores I visit at home and has a far superior children's section (a godsend for Ursula's birthday) and way more Coetzee... which was what I needed!
I loved visiting the bookstores and finding the books for my darling brother, but I also love walking through Paris.  I love the bridges and the grey-green Seine, watching Notre Dame rise up out of the river like a great-skirted giantess from the back, the flying buttresses elegant and strange.  I love winding my way back through the Left Bank to get home again, the steady drip of rain on my umbrella and the puddles expanding across the pavement.
Have you been to Paris?  Did you walk through the city?  What did you think?

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