Getting drunk in Lyon!
So after all of our adventures traipsing around Lyon that day, Cat and Chris had made plans for a fun night out. The Wallace...again, plus reservations at a restaurant that they had been craving all day.
The Wallace was our first stop, if only for an apertif or two...or three. The pub was already crowded, but surprisingly it was full of teenagers. The bar was a popular haunt for teens after school, made more popular by the fact that you can be 16 and drink in France. What amazed me was how well-behaved the kids were, sipping their beers and wine and having fairly intellectual conversations. Of course I drank when I was 16 too, but if we had been "allowed" to from such an age, I bet the alcohol abuse would have been a lot lower. By having a lower drinking age, these kids in the bar were taught how to drink responsibly, thus taking out an "illicit thrills" they may have gotten if it was all taboo and illegal.
The restaurant was located in "New" Lyon, which meant a semi-long trek through the streets of the city. Thanks to my comfy new pirate hooker boots and the amazing sights, the walk didn't seem that long. Oh and I'm sure the "beer" jacket helped as well.
Along the way we passed by a square which houses the Opera House. Posed stoicly in the middle of the square is a statue of a chariot, driven by racing steeds. The statue was beautifully lit and sculpted by the same guy who did the Statue of Liberty.
On closer look though, the horses seemed a bit more, erm, equipped? Glad that all the horses I've ridden don't have those horseshoes (though my old horse would have loved to get her wicked hoofs on a pair).
We finally reached the restaurant, which was perched on top of a hill (many hills in Lyon). It was a nice, "hidden treasure" sort of a place, which had an unassuming cafe/bar on the bottom. But if you looked a little further...and walked through the kitchen and up the steepest, rickitiest stairs you've ever encountered...you'll find the cutest dining room...
...with the nicest view, even in the dark of night, that looks out over the city and the other river in Lyon, the River Rhône (a major shipping artery that runs through Switzerland and France).
We started off the meal with an aperitif (yes...again) of Planter's Punch, followed by a Red Martini. And a bottle of wine. Or two. See, we didn't want to order food yet since a French couple, friends of Cat and Chris, were coming to join us, so we couldn't do much but order more wine and snack on a tasty appetizer of goat cheese. I'm not a fan of goat cheese by any means, but this fresh, gooey, warm melted goat cheese was deliciously mild and incredible spread on chewy, nutty bread. Sigh.
Sooner or later, the couple came and joined us and we dug into our meals of venison, duck and...and...dammnit, I can't remember what I ate! Too much wine at this point.
What I do remember was capping off the night with a delicious Creme Caramel (can't resist) and a generous toast with Chesnut liquer. The French sure love their Marrons (chesnuts), eaten roasted on the street, or blended with vanilla, or crammed into squishy pastries...this liquer, was sweet, heavenly and divine. But like the gorgeous Lemoncello I forgot to bring back from Italy, I forgot to smuggle a bottle of this stuff back from France. Sigh. Now I've gotta find a place in Vancouver that sells macarons AND Chesnut Liquer.
After we were considerably full and slightly soused, we walked back to...The Wallace. Yes, we had already been there twice that day, but by now it was absolutely heaving with hard-partying expats and locals alike. And then there was us, who didn't need to drink much to catch up.
Soon the dancing started, which Cat eagerly jumped into, as she flitted around the pub and talked to absolutely everybody. It seemed that the Wallace was a very small world indeed.
As for me, I did the most inane thing ever, the type of thing that when I explained it to my friend Leanne, she exclaimed, "I thought that kind of thing only happened in movies."
Yes, well sometimes I think my life should be a movie. Case in point:
I went upstairs to use the bathroom since the one downstairs meant you had to walk through the urinal. Yes, the urinal was pretty much in an alcove, wide open to the bar for all to see in wee wee glory, and the door to the stall was on the other side. Not wanting to impose on the peeing individuals, I went up the staircase to the open lounge up top.
Here was a similar set-up but with the sink open to the lounge, instead of urinals. Which meant that while you washed your hands, people in the lounge had a clear view of you. Which is what happened to me. I looked up in the mirror and could see people staring at me from behind. A bunch of guys were sitting on the couches and one or two of them kept looking my way.
As in trying to get my attention. I purposely averted my eyes from meeting theirs and kept washing my hands.
After I was done, I quickly walked past him, nose up, while one guy started to say something to me.
The nerve of these French guys, I thought to myself, so forward.
I was half-way down the stairs when I noticed I felt a little...breezy.
I put my hand to my skirt and realized I had tucked the entire back part of my skirt into my thong. No wonder the guys wanted to talk to me, they wanted to tell me that I was flashing everyone in the bar!
Mortified, I pulled my skirt out, covered my poor, exposed ass and avoided the upstairs for the rest of the night. Ross of course, thought this was all too funny.
Luckily we all had a few more drinks and I forgot all about it.
Until later as we were leaving and a French guy gestured to my bum with his buddy and laughed. And laughed...and laughed.
Sigh. Talk about making an ass of yourself.
Today was an oddly productive day in which I spent money I seriously can not afford to spend...all because I'm on my no-sugar, low-GI health-kick (I refuse to call it a diet), everything is so bloody expensive. Not to mention it was Capers, an organic market that charges you an arm and a leg and a torso. Why does eating well have to cost so much?
I felt pretty adventurous in the store though, especially after watching Nigella Feasts last night in which she made an "antioxidant salad." If eating the healthy stuff can make me looks as radiant and glowing as Nigella, then I am all for it.
Antioxidant Salad: Chop up mangoes, empty out a pomengranate, top with blueberries and a dash of lime juice.
I, of course, forgot to get the blueberries (I was so enraptured by the pomengrantes, I've never had one aside from the juice that's oh-so trendy now...how can fruit be fashionable?), but I'm sure a box of blackberries I got from the market for 99 cents (wooot one bargain) will make a good substitute.
I haven't made it yet but I'll let you know how it turns out. Then continuing my culinary adventure, I bought a Watermelon Radish. It's green with a pink inside and is quite sweet...still a radish though. I wanted to be blown out of this world by a radish/watermelon hybrid but it wasn't to be. I was slightly dissapointed. As I was with my Young Coconut.
Now, I thought I was buying a ready-to-eat coconut but I don't what to do with it. It may not have its shell, but it's hard as a rock and I have no idea how to get into it...is there even anything in there? So until someone kindly tells me how to get to the sweet sweet coconutyness, it's gonna sit in my fridge next to the Organic Valencia Peanut Butter and Organic Spinach Feta Hummus.
In other non-organic news, I have the new Damien Rice CD. I don't know if it's as good as "O" but it's certainly up there. Although there is one song in which he screams "Fuck you!" over and over again...and somehow makes it sound like poetry.
Oh yes, and the Golden Globes are on tonight. In some ways I actually prefer the Golden Globes since the actors and presenters get to drink at their table all night and by the time they get on the stage they are soused.
I bet Judi Dench is gonna get tanked.