It had barely been 24 hours and my body was already showing the symptoms of “food sickness”. I had made a pact with myself before leaving for this exciting journey “You are going to eat whatever that is served on your plate without any drama”. I personally believed and I still believe that the most difficult thing for a traveler is to come out of
her or his food comfort zone.
The fact of staying away from the sip of morning chai and bites of glucose biscuits was bothering me more than that of staying away from home.
“Come on woman, it is Europe! The next seven months of your life are to be spent embracing different countries, food, languages, drinks, people, cultures” this is exactly how I consoled myself. Yes, I was happy to get this chance but I must honestly admit that the desi foodie in me was reluctant.
I landed on the Paris airport. It reminded me of my initial French language lessons. How we were taught to have day to day conversations like buying a coffee or a metro ticket. Though it had been 8 years after that phase of my life and I had already got acquired a masters degree in French I was super excited about ordering that first cup of coffee and croissant.
To sum it up the morning ritual of canteen ki chai biscut was going to be replaced by a café and croissant, a type of French bread.
I went to Paul, one of the oldest bakery chains in France, and placed the order.
My brain started converting rupees into euros as I was supposed to pay exactly 2 euros. It was fun as I was behaving typically like a tourist and I knew that I will take some more time for me to get used to paying bills in euros.
The women at the bakery served me a café and croissant. The coffee served had no milk in it. Oops…
“You are not in India, Pallavi, you have to mention that you want milk and sugar in the coffee”, I said to myself and took a seat.
And then again I reminded myself of that pact .The tinge of gold on the brown bread and the shine of butter was mouth-watering. I took the first bite of the croissant and believe me that I actually shut my eyes for a few seconds. The butter melted in my mouth and the crunch was something to die for. It was not only baked to perfection but also to satiate the breakfast hunger. All I can say that it made me feel at home. Having the last bite with a sip of black coffee I smirked as I knew I had finally found my “chai biscuit” but yes the French way.