It’s almost autumn in Paris. But not quite. Summer vacations whizzed by and the “rentrée” is at the doorstep. Perhaps it’s your first September here or just another Parisian fall for you. For me, no matter how many years I spend in Paris, I always need a few days after my vacation to touch down and reconnect to my home. That’s when I like to put things in perspective before it all starts again. As in a meditation routine, I love to clear my mind, be thankful and just look forward to those Paris fall moments.
Do you know this French saying “On n’est jamais mieux servi que par soi même” ? It means “If you want something done right, do it yourself !” What better way to bounce back into the Parisian lifestyle than picture what you can enjoy or take up this autumn in Paris. Early fall does have this new year’s resolutions feel to it, doesn’t it ?
My indulging autumn in Paris resolutions
- Eat oysters again
It’s recommended to eat oysters only in months ending in “bre” (Septembre, Octobre, Novembre, Décembre) and “r” – this goes back to a royal decision in mid 18th century to avoid food poisoning due to the non existence of refrigerated transports in spring and summertime. Now you can eat them all year round but buy them fresh in your local market place or if you want to make a romantic dinner out of it, or are plain lazy, order a platter from a brasserie.
- Shop for new home accessories for cosy fireplace “soirées” with friends
Unless we have an Indian summer, garden parties or open balcony get-togethers are over. It’s time to shop for those oversize mugs, trendy coffee cups and comforting jetés for your sofa. Start with Habitat for plenty of affordable items.
- Dig-up new recipes with seasonal ingredients
Mushrooms (cèpes, girolles, truffles…), pumpkins, pears (scrumptious hot with roquefort), and chestnuts to cook in the fireplace (although I can’t get my hands on that special pierced pan they use)…
- Check out fall winter collections
I’m always surprised to see how fast seasons change in Paris. After this summer’s (exceptional) heat wave, I’ll be glad to snuggle into the favorite sweater I forgot about in my wardrobe. And better yet, shop for new stuff ! You’ll get the latest trend in Le Bon Marché department store but you can also browse in St Germain des Près for a good whiff of Paris stylish boutiques.
My more reasonable Paris fall intentions
stop thinking about food so much and
- Visit very private sites (you know I love snooping around 🙂 )
Les Journées Européennes du Patrimoine (European Heritage days in Paris) this year on September 19th and 20th. Mostly free, it’s an open house WE for sites usually closed to the public. Visit the Palais de l’Elysée (8th), l’Hôtel Matignon (7th), the Luxembourg Palace in the gardens (6th), the Banque de France (1st). Pick 1 or 2 locations per day, start early and be patient (lines can be very long). I prefer to save museums and exhibitions for later in the year.
- Start sports or cultural activities
Districts or towns open their sports facilities and classes after a summer break. Hurry up if you want to join a yoga or art class.
- Go to the public library
Get the best sellers I didn’t have time to read on vacation and French magazines for the kids (Astrapi, J’aime Lire, Géo, Phosphore…. ). Read with them – they’ll learn French in a jiffy and you…,how shall I put this, will make progress :-). Most public libraries have a small English section but go to English bookstores for a larger choice.
- Take strolls in the park in Paris or in the suburbs
In the Parc Monceau or Jardin des Tuileries or Jardin du Luxembourg or Ile de la Jatte (Neuilly-sur-Seine) or Ile St Germain in (Issy-les-Moulineaux). Enjoying bike rides with the kids and fresh jogs before it gets too cold.
Whether it’s your first autumn in Paris or not, getting on a routine will help you connect with the environment you’ll soon call home.
Your turn !
What about you ? Do you ever get that dizzy feeling early september ? If you’re overwhelmed by the upcoming months, make your own list fall resolutions and don’t forget to share below in the comments !
Love to hear from you !