Saturday, August 30, 2008

Samedi apre-midi

A beautiful Saturday with people busily going here and there. I went early to the marche on the quai St. Antoine, my favorite market. My great quest was for fresh figs which I thought would be in season. They were there, both black ones and green ones, and I bought some of each along with far too many things...apricots, grapes, onions, lemons, olives cured with dilled, and spinach. Also a small chevre sec, the drier and slightly salty version of goat's cheese that I've had only here. Lyon is clearly the "centre de la gastronomie de la France." It's where all the wonderful foods of Provence and of the west of France converge. Paul Bocuse is Lyonais! Many things come here before they get to Paris. On the way back to the apartment I stopped at the boulangerie on rue du Plat, very near my apartment. As you enter, a little bell sounds and a young woman appears through the door behind the counter. It was hard to decide what to buy, so I just asked for a baguette. When she wrapped it in a square of paper and handed it to me, I realized that it was warm, and as I walked home I became one of those people that you see munching on pieces torn from a fragrant baguette

Later in the day as I walked further along the quai de la Saone I found that my favorite boulangerie was open on Saturday afternoon. This is the establishment of Philippe Richard, Artisan Boulanger. There was one pain au raisin left. This is kind of a swirl of croissant pastry with soft raisins and the tiniest bit of pastry creme mixed in. I felt just a bit like a groupie as I put my 1€50 into his calloused and floury hand.

It was a day with much walking and a number of errands--getting carnets (booklets) of metro tickets for the students, making a reservation for our first night dinner at a venerable and true bucheron Lyonais. While this restaurant meal will be rather a rare treat, I'm looking forward to our group "cooking events" and shopping at the outdoor markets with the students. With the array of ingredients I've seen, we should be able to come up with our own impressive cuisine.

These photos are of the market and the things I brought home.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Cafe aux pieds humides

That's really the name of this cafe on Place Bellecour, and it has the amazing amenity of free wifi! So, after a day of running around town confirming arrangements for my students, I am able to sit in this beautiful square with a glass of bon vin and prepare for tomorrow. I think that perhaps cafe-sitting will be a required course for my students. Lyon is as beautiful, lively, and relaxed as I remember it. This evening I will cherchez un bon restaurant as a special treat for my students' first evening in the city. After that, September is a month filled with dance events each day, French lessons, and our own modern dance technique and composition classes. I have an idea for a video dance that we might create and recreate in various venues during our stay. Today I discovered how interesting it was to dance on the wide, stone steps that lead to my apartment in a graceful, old building. We could dance on the steps that lead down beside the slightly creaky, but very charming filigree elevator.