April 18, 2014
When I quit my corporate job and moved to Paris to pursue my dream of becoming a pastry chef, I wasn’t sure how far down this path I could manage.
Sure, I loved eating pastries and I loved the idea of making them, but I had also heard enough Hell’s Kitchen stories that had kept me worried.
So what is it really like to work in a pastry kitchen in Paris? As a part of my professional pastry program at école Ferrandi, I completed a 5-month internship at Un Dimanche à Paris, a chic boutique known for its beautiful exhibition kitchen and delicious pastries. Here are some behind-the-scene snapshots to give you an idea of what the life of a French patissier is like. Continue Reading »
Posted in Food, Parisian Living | 14 Comments »
November 16, 2012
During my recent visit to the U.S., my sister told everyone that I live in Paris just to marvel at their reactions.
“Just stick a dagger in my heart, why don’t you,” came the response from a cosmetics salesman. “I’d give anything to live in Paris…” It garnered me bonus points in San Francisco’s chic boutiques and even scored us a table at an impossible-to-book restaurant. “My sister’s just in from Paris… hoping you might have something for us at eight?” Pas de problème.
Every expat who lives here knows the feeling. Why? Because Paris is the culmination of our romantic dreams, the city upon which we project our fantasies of a life well lived. We’re the lucky ones who’ve somehow pulled it off. But how?
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Posted in Parisian Living | 29 Comments »
April 19, 2012
35 hour work week – time for gazing at the Seine - Christophe Hue
Many associate French working life with 35-hour weeks, strikes, long long lunch breaks and even longer holidays. This is certainly the image that I’d carefully conjured in my idealistic head before setting foot in France.
The big question: does reality live up to this delightful worker-friendly dream?
Well, I can confirm that the 35-hour week does exist (at least for a privileged minority), strikes do take place on a not-infrequent basis, lunch breaks remain sacred, and holidays are considered to be an untouchable national right (right up there alongside liberté, egalité, fraternité).
However, beneath the shiny and appealing veneer, day-to-day work has its fair share of up and downs.
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Posted in Parisian Living | 4 Comments »