mercredi, avril 11, 2007

A Last Hurrah

Sara was leaving the next day, so we needed to take her out one more night for a bit of food and fun. DJ took charge that night (in a totally platonic way), leading us to a bistro near Abesses in Montmartre that made HUGE salads. We each had one of these salads (dinner-sized, about as big as your head); each salad had a different combination of toppings, but they all came with a layer of fried garlic potatoes. It was heavenly.

After polishing off our food and a bottle of wine, we headed out for a walk and in search of another drink. DJ showed us the café where all the café scenes for Amélie were shot (they've done some renovations, but they still keep a wall-sized poster to advertise to everyone who will look). After that, we wandered down to Le Moulin Rouge, saw a bit of the red-light district, and then headed up Montmartre again to DJ's favourite bar.

This bar, called Au Rendez-Vous des Amis, is indeed a lovely bar, but it's HALFWAY UP THE STEEP HILL TO SACRE-COEUR. We had to do a LOT of stair-climbing, post-dinner, to make it up there for drinks.

Once we got up there, we grabbed some beers and hung out for a while, waiting for a table to open and trying not to be too catty about the singer-songwriter wailing in the room next to us. After a few minutes, a table opened up and we swooped down on it like the table-vultures we are. A couple rounds of beer later, DJ points out that the bar is known for selling kir by the bottle (well, the "pot" of 500ml), with some pretty wild syrup shots. Sara and I tried the violet-flavoured kir, which tasted like pez at first, but got old after a couple of glasses. Sara was drinking slower than I, so I ended up drinking most of the bottle.

By the time we were done there and made it back to the métro station, the trains had closed for the night. We grabbed the night bus over to République and bundled Sara into a cab. With that taken care of, DJ and I prepared to head home for the night by bus. However, before we did, I finally got a good shot of that "Cry Me a River" sign that hangs over the north-west spoke of the roundabout. I still don't know why it's there and who put it there, but check out these great images:

On the night bus home, we sat near a semi-toothless and very drunk gentleman, who made several attempts to strike up conversation with us. While it wasn't always clear that he was talking to us, at one point he asked DJ, "Where are you from?" "The USA" (I didn't say anything.) "Oh, sorry about that." Then I piped up, "I'm not from the USA," although I didn't bother give any more details.

A little while later, he asked us what we were doing in France. We explained that we were studying, and he asked what. When DJ said "music," man suddenly became very approving, saying "That's very good. Music has no language, no race, no gender, no class, it's..." "...universal," I added, kicking DJ's leg as I said it. While the idea of the transcendent universality of music (the "universal language" cliché) can be very attractive, it has been largely abandoned by modern musicology; the mainline argument--swiftly paraphrased--is that regardless of whether music should be above or outside politics, class, and bodies, nonetheless it is at play in our daily lives, and to think otherwise would be to miss out on how music works in the world around us.

And, as if on cue, he spoke up, "The only universal Americans ever found...was Universal Studios..."

Aucun commentaire: