Our blogging will naturally take a small change in direction given the worldwide Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic and quarantine here in Paris. While this hasn’t been strictly a travel blog, we have tended to write about the places we have been whether it is other cities, restaurants, or parks. There isn’t much use to that now (even though I do have a backlog of posts I wanted to write about places we visited earlier this year).

For me it is day 7 of staying home (#stayhome!) in our 67m2 apartment in Paris.

So, I going forward you will be able to read about my gardening efforts, furnishing our new apartment, and day to day life. Stuff like that! Today, it is about my balcony.

My balcony

I am so VERY grateful for my balcony. It provides peace, entertainment, activity and solidarity.

Entertainment: I seem to pop out there about once every hour. The street below still has activity so I watch the people going in and out of the tabac. What can so many people need from the tabac? It must be cigarettes?

Lining up at the tabac

I also watch the people queuing in the morning for the grocery store. There seem to not be any real shortages but people still feel the need to be there at opening time. Later in the day there are never queues. I also watch the people going and coming from the subway. There is a whole world out there!

Lining up at the grocery store

Peace: The best times are early in the morning or just before sunset. I take my coffee out in the morning and try to breathe deeply and relax. I am not one for meditating so it’s the best I can do and works for me.

Morning coffee

For a change I am showing you a view that DOESN’T include the Eiffel Tower. You’ve seen plenty of those already!

Peaceful sunset

Activity: As soon as I moved in, I started a small herb garden. It has provided parsley and cilantro throughout the winter and the mint is starting to grow again.

The herb garden

Fortunately, about 3 weeks ago, with spring in the air I ordered some seeds (I wouldn’t be able to get them now). Last year I also acquired some dirt. (Fille was laughing at my yesterday since I happened to say about our supplies and what we might need to get at the store “my only concern is the dirt”.)

You’ll hear more about why I chose these seeds in a future post!

I have started planting the seeds and hopefully I will be able to show you what grows!

Some of the seeds planted. I think (!) these are basil, kale and swiss chard.

Solidarity: Every night at 8pm, Parisiens go out on their balcony and applaud the hospital workers (and in my mind everyone else as well who is keeping things going like truck drivers, cashiers, IT workers keeping up the internet). The evening clapping is very emotional. You can live in Paris and hardly get to know your neighbors but through this nightly get together on our balconies I feel solidarity with those around me. Also, we seem to have an usually loud group around us/around the park across from us so it is very inspiring. I hope the workers are finding it helpful.

I hope you all enjoy this change of direction.

Stay safe and stay home!