Weather has finally broken. Distinctly chillier, wind picking up and skies overcast for the first time since we arrived. Rain forecast for tomorrow but we have had a very good run so can't complain about our change of fortune.
Yesterday we were up early for a run out to Clingancourt, the very large Paris flea market in the northern suburbs. Since we had a dinner party planned for the evening and needed to get back in time to shop, prepare the apt for guests and organize the meal, we decided to arrive at the market an hour later than the official opening time of 8 am. Jane, V and I took the subway out and arrived shortly after 9 to find that most of the vendors did not feel the same urgency that we did and in fact very few of the stalls had yet setup and opened.
We had a coffee, wandered the narrow little alleys and streets and poked among all the trash and treasure of the last 300 years of French life. If you have been to Paris but have never been to Clingancourt or the Marché aux Puces, then please rectify this on your next trip. The entire setup of the market is like a small city consisting of about 14 sub-markets, indoors and out, upstairs and down, in alleys, passages, shops and warehouses. Some streets go two or three blocks deep into the market. Of course the deeper you go, the less pretty it is, but that’s where a lot of the treasure hunting happens.
There is a wonderfully helpful web site called Flea Market Insider that's well worth looking at and their coverage of the Clingancourt market is covered here if you click on this link.
Took a bus back to our neighbourhood about 11 and spent a couple of happy hours wandering up rue Montorgueil, one of our favourite food shopping streets. Bought a gigot of lamb, perfect little french beans, a mound of potatoes dauphinois, cheeses, fruit, salad stuff, wine and a very tempting iced chocolate cake and a plum tart. Tonight is a joint birthday party for Jane and V, the seventh in the series that began on their official birthdays in early September. I say this quietly, so as not to be overheard, but I sincerely hope it's the last. We are being joined by a Parisian couple, friends of Jane and David and we're looking forward to getting a local's view of time, place and events.