|Chez Sophinette, Paris, 19 April 2013.|
It was a small place with tables by the window and a servery, behind which a rather attractive French woman was busying herself with whatever people who work in cafés busy themselves with.
"Bonjours!" I said with a smile, adding that it was the only word in French that I knew, but then, as I sat down to await my breakfast, I realised that I was mistaken: there were loads of words, especially if you took into account all those French words that have made their way into the English language, like 'entrepreneuer'.
I ordered tea, fresh orange juice and bread and jam, having turned down the traditional croissant, which, incidentally, the girl behind the counter DIDN'T pronounce in that awfully pretentious way that English people do: 'cwass-orr'. I hate that and found it refreshing that the French don't pronounce it that way, just poncy English people. I might be wrong, of course, and would only know the truth if I conducted some kind of survey by asking random Parisiens to say 'croissant'. Needless to say, I couldn't be bothered.
|Petit Dejeuner – a small breakfast on a small tray, but then came the bread!|
Within seconds of my arrival, others turned up and made similar orders as I gazed out of the window hoping that my toothache wouldn't return. The previous evening I'd gone out for dinner in a local Italian restaurant, not far from Chez Sophinette, and was in unbearable, jaw-breaking pain. So bad that I got the bill and left and, as I write this from my hotel room (room 406) I can still see the half bottle of Valpolicella with a cork stuck in the top. It's wasted and I should have left it in the restaurant. I had the choice: painkiller or wine? In the end I opted for the former.
The view from Chez Sophinette's window was not good: building sites, cranes, that sort of thing, and a busy road in front of it all, but that was the only down side and I'm guessing that once the building work is completed, the view will be much better. This was, effectively, a snack bar, not the sort of place to get cosy while reading a book, in my case, Cycling Home from Siberia by Rob Lilwall, which I finished on the Eurostar home.
The bill for my petit dejeuner was EUR4.50 – very reasonable. Downside? Not many, but it could have been a little cosier in my opinion.