I'm mildly obsessed with Parisian culture. It happened when I started planning my five year wedding anniversary - a trip to Paris. I read all the blogs, started taking French and read every single Parisian based memoir I could get my hands on. And when I got there? It was just as wonderful as I'd hoped. We had an amazing vacation, were even mistaken for natives a couple of times (mon dieu!), and returned home with tons of pictures and trinkets to remind us of our time there.
It was so wonderful, in fact, that my adoration of Parisian sophistication has persisted. I still read the blogs and am often heard to exclaim over how the table manners here in restaurants just doesn't compare to Paris. (Seriously though, it doesn't. Every time I go to a restaurant it feels like I've entered a mess hall. Just because a place is crowded doesn't mean you have to yell. Just lean in a little closer and talk a little softer. The ambience is better and it's more romantic.)
Lately I discovered a wonderful little Parisian shop online that specializes in only the very best skincare, makeup and hair products. The owner has a store in Paris but also ships worldwide via her online store (it's called Oh My Cream!). I can't resist it! I painstakingly translate the articles in their online magazine and browse through the products, entranced. If only I'd known it was there when I went last summer!
There's just something about the French. I'd love to go back to Paris again, as well as travel through the rest of France, but there's a few different places I need to see first. In the meantime, I will continue to prowl the blogs and shop online, pampering myself with little tastes of French elegance.