Rest assured that your neglect is due to my riveting final experiences here in Paris. That being said, I still have some enthusiastic and witty material for you.
Firstly, I’m starting to realize all of the things I miss from the US. Those things, while being almost exclusively food products, are fairly random. Several of them can be found in Paris at one of the American or Foreign food stores sprinkled around the city, but they all come with an imported price tag that has yet to become reasonable. They all also happen to be the most unhealthy and indulgent foods that the US has to offer.
In all honesty, Paris is such a metropolitan city that you can find pretty much anything here, and the only real difference in my diet is that I make a lot more of my own food here with foods that I buy at my local market once a week. There are though some things I have been missing.
When I originally moved into my apartment, upon inspection of the contents of my new refrigerator, I found two of the food products I miss most – Ranch and American BBQ sauce. Now, at the time, I had no idea that you can’t find these things here in Paris, so I used the rance once or twice like the other condiments in the fridge. Little did I know that my room-mate had actually brought it back with him from the US after his recent visit. Needless to say, I stopped using it, and I don’t think he noticed. At least he hadn’t until he read this.
Other missed things include:
American Mayonaise – They have Mayo here, but it has an odd tang to it that I can’t exactly get used to. It seems like everything tastes just a little bit different here. Usually things taste better, but no one can do a stable emulsion of oil and egg yolk like the good ol’ US of A.
Yellow Mustard – Now, I know the French are known for their mustard, and I have tried a ton of the stuff. Don’t get me wrong, its good – really good, but sometimes I want a big sandwich with YELLOW MUSTARD and MAYO. I mean, kill me for the sacrilege, but sometimes the situation calls for a huge three layer ham and cheese smothered with the stuff. I can only have so much of the stuff here before I’m dijoned out.
Microwave Popcorn – Even the popcorn at the movie theaters comes in huge pre-popped bags. It is possible to find loose kernels if you are lucky, but there is something about that hot salty buttery crunch that nothing else can replicate.
My mom’s home made bread – I know. I know. I’m in Paris, surrounded by boulangeries full of freshly baked baguettes, and I miss mom’s bread. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve loved every bite of all the bread I have eaten here, but I’m planning giving my mom my ETA for the sole purpose of having warm bread coming out of the oven when I arrive.
Now, before you read the next one, hear me out.
I like fast food. I do. Kill me. I don’t eat it all the time (with the exception perhaps of Jimmy Johns,) but I like it. Believe it or not, the french do too. The McDonalds here are always packed to the brim. Old, young, fat, skinny, they line up just like we do.
Now, at the risk of alienating some of my more refined readers, I have to tell you that I’ve been to McDonalds twice. The first time I convinced myself that it was just for a cultural comparison, a learning experience. The second time I just wanted a quarter-pounder, and I have no excuse.
Again, I found everything just different enough to be unsatisfying. Needless to say, my first purchases upon reaching US soil will be a Cheesy Gordita Crunch and a Nachos Bell Grande from Taco Bell.
I do miss my guilty indulgences, but I am happy to trade them for some of the best food I’ve had in my entire life here in the city of lights. I’m just going to have to try to not go overbord when I get home.
Now I’m starving, so I’m going to go pay exorbitant prices on all of these imported food items.