The Journal

French Pastry

She’s never been to France, but she’s sure she would fit right in. After all, she loves French cafés, pain au chocolate, and big, dark sunglasses.

She wishes every morning would start with all three, like this morning did. She woke up earlier than usual, put on a black boatneck sweater, her jeans with the rolled cuffs, her new, red Ferragamo shoes and her dark glasses and hopped in the car to go see her love before he headed off to class.

After a kiss goodbye and an “I love you” shouted as he rode off on his bicycle, she made a stop by the florists, then went on to a new French café that had opened over the weekend. The café had the feel that it was still getting comfortable in its own skin, but it was off to a lovely start. It was bright and open, with the most delightful watercolor paintings filling the walls. They were all in big, round frames that made her feel as if she were on a ship staring out through portholes onto different landscapes and seasons. Her favorite was a mass of red poppies that seemed to be giving an exuberant cheer for spring and happiness.

Up to the counter and the display of freshly baked pastries, she ordered two pain au chocolates to go – one for her to devour and one to give to him so he wouldn’t feel left out. The woman behind the counter had a winsome accent and was originally from the southern part of Paris. Not only was the woman an accomplished pastry chef, she was also the artist behind the watercolors.

Once home, she took the first bite and knew this would become one of her favorite places. It was moist, chewy and just flakey enough. Although she knew it was in there, the chocolate was still like a delicious surprise. Perfection. She sat at her kitchen table drinking tea, savoring her pastry and reading a book about a woman who grew to adore France and its culinary delights.

Although she wasn’t in France in body, she took herself there in mind and spirit. Ah, la belle France – she begins to know and love you. She will meet you soon.


  1. […] wonderful tête à tête with my friend Amanda. She and I went to Cafe Francais – remember them? It was such a lovely intermission to my day – the conversation was just what I’ve been […]

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