21 December 2020

A studio apartment in Paris

After arriving here and getting moved into our new house in 2003, we went three years without staying in another gîte. It wasn't that we didn't travel a little bit, but we stayed in hotels. In February 2004, we drove down to Madrid (it was a real adventure involving a snowstorm!) to see our friend Sue, who was spending 4 or 5 months there studying Spanish. We went with the dog, and we booked a room in a French hotel (Novotel) because French hotels usually welcome dogs while, if I understand correctly, Spanish hotels do not.

In June 2004 I drove up to Normandy because CHM and his partner Frank were up there, in Carteret near Cherbourg, visiting a friend. I drove them back to Saint-Aignan for a two-week stay, and then I drove them to Paris. I can't remember if I stayed overnight in Paris or just turned around and drove back home. Maybe CHM remembers.

In March 2006, Walt and I rented a studio apartment in Paris and went to spend a week there, wandering the streets and eating in restaurants. A friend from California happened to be there at the same time, so we shared lunches and dinners with her. The pictures here show the place we stayed in.

It was a fine apartment. Actually, I think it looks better in these photos than it did in reality. The exterior of the building was fairly grim. The shutters had to stay shut all the time because the windows were at street level and it wasn't comfortable to feel like you were on display. At least there weren't several flights of steep, narrow stairs to climb.

The apartment was small but comfortable, very clean, and not expensive. Above, you can see a sofa that folds out into a kind of sofa-bed. It's what's called a clic-clac because, I think, of the sound it makes when you fold it out and it locks into place. I remember it as being fairly comfortable, and it was convenient in such a small studio apartment.

It's nice when you're in Paris to have a kitchen and a dining-room set, even if you don't do a lot of elaborate cooking. You can buy salads and pâtés, for example, in charcuterie shops, so it's good to have a refrigerator. You can also buy prepared dishes that just need re-heating. And in the morning you can make your own coffee or tea and then run out to a boulangerie and bring back croissants and fresh bread for breakfast in the apartment.

It's also nice to have a private bathroom even if it is not very spacious. There was a tub with a shower and plenty of hot water. Still, one thing that would have made the apartment much more comfortable and pleasant would have been some pull-up shades on the windows. Then you could have pull them up for privacy, so that passersby couldn't easily see in, but leave them open at the top to let in some sunlight in the morning. Across the street there were no apartment buildings, just the Musée des Arts-et-Métiers.


  1. I'm trying to think if I've ever been to the Musée des Arts-et-Métiers.
    I didn't know that you two had traveled to Madrid!

  2. Your post today is going to make me research Paris apartments, Ken, and wish that I were actually planning a trip there. I wish.
    I’m looking forward to seeing pictures of Walt’s birthday steak au poivre.

  3. Blogger hasn't let me post for two days. An apartment like this is a good thing,

  4. Judy: definitely put Musée des Arts-et-Métiers on your list. It's full of oldie science equipment and things like flying machines and the model for the Statue of Liberty. One of the levels of the Arts-et-Métiers metro station is done up in steampunk!

  5. Musée des Arts-et-Métiers would be worth it just to see the model of Liberty.

    Ken, here they often use frosted glass on street level windows with the top half being clear. There's a film, like tinting windows on a car, but white.

  6. I tried to post this comment much earlier this morning, but the internet was down. Here it is.

    First, I was in such a turmoil because of Frank ilness and our having to cut short our stay in France to go back to the US that I don't remember if you stayed or not.
    Second, I seem to have problems with the WiFi, here in the so-called rehab center. Its disconnects all the time and can't dowload some photos. Earlier this morning, I couldn't access any website or my emails. I don't know what's wrong.


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