So there I was, overheating from confusion in a Parisian bakery, a thin sheet of glass the only thing standing between me and the crumbly rows of the world’s best pastries.
By some fortunate stroke of luck, Tim had a work project in France the month before we got married. Although it wasn’t strictly necessary for me to tag along, I heeded the immortal words of Audrey Hepburn (“Paris is always a good idea”) and hopped on the flight with him for a little Francophile adventure.
While he was working, I had long stretches of time with nothing to do but wander the City of Lights alone— ooh lala! Unfortunately, the extent of my French language skills is saying “bon soir” really dramatically (I just love the way it rolls off the tongue: “bon swahhh”) and clapping my hands overenthusiastically when someone refills my wine glass.
So I was up a bit of the proverbial creek when, armed with a newly memorized 3-item bakery noun list— and whispering them to myself the entire walk there like a real cool kid— I sauntered past the baguettes and confidently announced to the cashier “deux croissants aux almondes.” Two almond croissants, please. It’s so simple. And then the unexpected happened: she responded to me in French. Holy merde, I wasn’t prepared for questioning, I thought I could just nervously grip my euro in my little mitts and hand it over when she gave me the goods. So I did what any normal human would do: I squinched my eyes shut, kept nodding, and whispered “oui” until I was handed a heavy bag of freshly baked delights.
Back at the apartment, Tim and I unpacked the steaming bags and to my incredulous delight, I’d somehow gotten well over a dozen croissants of all different stripes: almond! chocolate! almond WITH chocolate, which I didn’t even know was an option! What IS this dream world of a Parisian suburb?! Can life really be like this? Who needs perfect French when you black out and THIS happens?
That morning has stuck with me, not just because I always dream of it, but because it’s become a bit of a life philosophy long after we returned home. ALWAYS KEEP SAYING YES. Whether you’re exploring the cobbled streets of the south of France or just venturing into a new neighborhood at home, when life offers you choices, just keep nodding and saying oui. The worst that can happen?
Is that you end up with 18 croissants.
Wanna wildly hit up French bakeries in the south of France this autumn? Ready to say oui to the next adventure? Yeah, we thought so. Place your deposit for Moveable Feast France by midnight on Sunday, May 15 and get $200 off! DO YOU KNOW HOW MANY ALMOND CROISSANTS THAT CAN GET YOU? (No really, do you know? I’m still not sure what happened that day in the bakery…)