Mulhouse & Colmar

Jaclyn and I spent Monday in a very old and artsy part of Paris called Monmarte. We had to walk up a giant hill, several sets of steep staircases, and some winding alleys to make it to the town, but the effort is rewarded by fabulous food, spectacular sights of the entire city, and lots of flavor unique to this section of Paris. Many artists called Monmarte home, Picasso & Renior to name a couple, and the main square is still packed with artists today, but most of it was cliche stuff meant for tourists. A saw a dozen 12 year old kids on a field trip getting crepes with whipped creme on them, it was too much, I broke down to my 12 year old self and mustered up enough French to order one myself. It was light and indulgent all at once, I enjoyed it to a level that seemed almost inappropriate. Jac and I wandered in and out of shops; churches, and museums, we saw so much beauty on every street. Grape vines grew on the houses, a tiny vinyard occupied the center of town, and all the bakers did their job with perfection and pride. You can eat well in Paris on the cheap, you can find sandwiches on baguettes all over, inexpensive cafes are ubiquitous and ideal for breakfast, and for dinner you can find very reasonable places tucked away on the back streets.

On Wednesday, Jac and I rented a car and headed out to Mulhouse. It is a six hour drive that takes you all the way across France on the boarder of Germany and Switzerland. We were meeting up with an old friend of Jaclyns, his name is Oliver. In her senior year of high school, Jaclyn stayed with Oliver in France and then Oliver stayed with Jaclyns family. I was nervous and did not know what to expect, but all of that concern was completely unjustified as Oliver and his family have been the most hospitable hosts I could every imagine. Lots of fabulous meals, champagne and local wines – Mulhouse is in the Alsace region with lots of great wines, and just absolute joy to be with all the time. Oliver is also a terrific tour guide and has shown us all the wonderful sights in the the towns of Colmar and Mulhouse. These towns are composed of buildings from the 1400s, you must Google Colmar and see what we are seeing, it is the trip of a lifetime.

I would write more, but I am writing from a French computer, with a French key board, and French spell check, so everything is in a different spot than I am used to and all my words are showing up as spelled incorrectly.

Today, Jac and I head off to Strasbourg, Oliver said it is superb – I cannot figure out how to add exclamation point, or else I would.

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