I started to write that I’ve come to a crossroads with this blog, but that isn’t true.  I typed that I didn’t quite know what direction to continue on in.  That’s a lie as well.  The truth of the matter is, I’ve been working on a piece for quite some time now, but it’s total shit.  Every time I go to write it, I end up disliking everything from the vocabulary to the structure to the overall theme and tone.  When this happens, any writer worth his or her salt knows it’s time to walk away and let the piece gel for a bit.  But  I’m stubborn as of late.  Until I finish it, until I conquer it, I don’t quite know what else to publish.  Sigh.

So while I wait for inspiration, courage, and energy to return, I’ll turn to my dearest friend for blog fodder.  The following conversation was recorded on my last day in Paris while sitting in the Palais Royal gardens with Emma.  She explained why Du pain et des idées is her favorite bakery in the city.  The significance of the name – “Bread and Ideas” – isn’t lost on me today.

Fingers crossed for new ideas of my very own soon.

Kimberly: Um, Emma wants to describe really good bread for us.

Emma: Really good bread, to me, has a beautiful golden crust that’s thick and really [starts laughing] crunchy.  Um, and a bit salty and ever so slightly burnt.  And then [laughing throughout] once your teeth have gone through the crust…I’m drooling as I speak…you encounter the mie (note: the doughy inside) .  The crust, you feel the crust against your teeth.  But the mie, you feel with your tongue.  And it’s…

Kimberly: This is…sexual.
[Lots of laughing]
Emma: It is sexual!  And it’s um, what was I saying?  It’s dense yet light.  And there are air bubbles but not too many.  And it’s got…it’s slightly tangy as well?  Isn’t it?
Kimberly: Yeah, like a sourdough.  It’s got, um, kind of an acidity to it.
Emma: Yeasty, yeah.
Kimberly: [Giggling like a child] Yeasty!
Emma: Yeah!  It is yeasty!  And, uh, yeah…good bread is good fresh from the bakery but it’s also good toasted.  With salted butter!
Kimberly: ALWAYS with salted butter.
[Non-stop giggling]
Emma: And melted butter, mmm!  That dribbles all the way down your fingers and your forearm!  Then you lick your fingers clean.
[Uncontrollable laughter all around]
Kimberly: This is pornographic!
Emma: Yeah!
Kimberly:  Really quickly, your favorite bakery?
Emma: Favorite bakery, uh…Du pain et des idées,
Kimberly: Where’s that?
Emma: It’s…you know where it is.  Stop pretending!  Don’t you?
Kimberly: No!
Emma: Rue Yves Toudic, near République.  What?! [Laughing] I’ve, I’ve never…we’ve never had bread from Du pain et des idées?
Kimberly: Cancel… [Laughing and gasping for air] …cancel my plane tickets!
Emma: It’s the best bread in the world! It tastes of chestnut.
Kimberly [Trying to turn off dictaphone, quietly]: Don’t say another word.
Emma: I’m going to have to send you bread.
Illustrations by Emma G. 

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