In a small Parisian cafe, in the shadows of the neighborhood of Notre Dame, sat the Cafe St. Regis. With lively hosts, and a crowd of locals and tourists, my friends found a table on a cold February morning in a table for five, around a clean white table cloth and a delightful table display.
On a small island in the middle of the Seine, we stumbled across this small, but charming cafe. The air was frigid, but the cafe turned a blustery winter day into a cozy and unforgettable Parisian experirence.
I’ve heard from different friends that the French- especially Parisians- are cold, and off-putting. I say they just haven’t been in the right places of Paris.
Because in this cozy little cafe- in the heart of the toursity part of Paris, just across from the Notre Dame in fact, I met some of the friendliest, happiest, smiling-est people in all of Paris.
Our waiter was delightful and patient, and helped us try our hand at the French pronunciations of each thing on the menu. He encouraged our one French speaker to try her hand, while he delighted us with stories of his family in French, with just a teensy bit of English to help guide us along the way. At one point, one of my friends was putting on lipstick in here mirror and he popped up behind her and looked through her mirror to scare her. Within minutes, we felt at home in this beautiful cafe.
He did his best to only speak to us in French, but not in the way that he was belittling or condescending. He did so as a way to show off the beautiful language of the French people, and give us the true Parisian experience.
Now to the main part- the meal. Out of all the breakfasts I had in Paris, this breakfast was by far the best deal, with croissants, orange juice, tea, and water. Our friendly waiter gifted us with chocolate croissants instead of regular croissants for no extra charge.
Now these croissants, my goodness I could go on about them for days. Flaky on the outside, but so buttery, warm and soft on the inside. The chocolate was rich and fresh, oozing with each bite we took.
The tea was warm and reminded us of home and the orange juice fresh squeezed with just the right amount of pulp. We sipped and laughed and forgot about everything else in life. It was just us, a new group of friends enjoying a breakfast in one of the most famous cities in the world.
Perhaps it was all too good to be true, but for us, it was the perfect start to our Parisian vacation. Yet, our time was coming to a close, and we knew we had to explore more of the city. But we knew that we would always have our breakfast in Paris to help us remember that the simplest things are often the best things.
Here’s to making each breakfast count. xx
Before studying abroad, I found breakfast to be boring and a waste of precious sleeping time. However, when traveling through Europe, I found new comfort and purpose in warm morning croissants and soothing teas and coffees. In a way, one might say that I repurposed my opinion on breakfast, only to fall back in love with mornings again.