On Saturday evening my friend and I had the most amazing chocolate ever. Called a coeur noir, it was a thick heart-shaped dark chocolate with an almond and hazelnut paste filling. We picked it out after studying the window of L’Atélier du Chocolat on rue Montorgueil. I was still thinking about it days later. But that’s not what I was going to talk about.
We ducked out of the cold and into the Centre Pompidou, Paris’s modern art museum, to savor the chocolate in the warm interior. After, we spent a long time browsing the museum bookstore and gift shop. My friend’s reaction to his first time looking through a kaleidoscope amused me to no end. Apparently he’s gone with whole life without coming upon one. His wonder rivaled that of a child’s.
I mistakenly thought that the museum closed at 10, not 9, so by the time we were done, the ticket counter was closed. Ce n’était pas grave. The next day I didn’t have plans until 7pm, so in the afternoon I returned to the Centre Pompidou, or Beaubourg, as the French call it.
I started by taking the escalators, which are nestled in transparent tubes on the exterior of the building’s façade, all the way up to the top to see the view of Paris.There was something about the narrow buildings lined up in a row, the unobstructed view of this city of rooftops, and the warm lights below that reminded me of a miniature Christmas village. How cozy! In a museum, there is usually one room that makes me stop and spend a while. This time that room contained two huge square abstract paintings side by side, one by Sonia Delaunay and the other by Robert Delaunay. They were married and active in the early 20th century. Can you see the way these paintings interact with each other? If I had these in my living room, they would be all the entertainment I needed.