Le Pavillon Baltard

June 13, 2002 - 3:00 pm

I get the feeling I'm in the back room of this place, even though there is an entrance here. I'm sitting in an enclosed area, surrounded by windows. I think there is an Asian woman sitting on the other side of this room, behind a rolling cabinet, but she's not making any sounds at all, so I can't be sure she's still here. There is no one in sight, neither in this room nor at any of the outside tables. It's completely deserted. A hallway leads to the main restaurant that I know absolutely nothing about. (The Asian woman just left.) Outside to my right is the large round Bourse building. Straight ahead are the gardens of Les Halles, complete with pink and red flowers, and I can see the blue top of the Pompidou Center in the distance. This is the most quiet, peaceful café I have ever been in. If I wrote in the same place every day, I would write here, no question. It's wonderful.

I hear some children playing outside, and a radio in another room plays old songs, but it's so far away that the songs are distant, muffled. Earlier I heard "Bridge Over Troubled Water" and later, "Hey Jude." I am sitting at a large round table with a light brown top whose design makes it look like it's covered with amoeba-shaped microorganisms. The chairs are wooden with plush violet cushions. There is a potted tree to my left and some blue flowers in a pot a little farther away. From time to time a little sparrow flies inside the open doors and around the room before flying out again. I hear people talking in the hallway, but there is absolutely no one else here. It is a beautiful place to write.

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Le Pavillon Baltard
Metro: Les Halles

Price of an expresso: 2 euros
Sugar: packet of sugar cubes

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