Thursday, December 30, 2010

2010: year in review.

At first, I thought I was just going to put together a brief list of the high points of 2010. You know, sort of "the best of." But then I realized- my list of the best things in 2010 was not brief.

Which was a lovely realization.

That's not to say there weren't tough moments (or days, or weeks...) but overall, it really has been a spectacular year and one worth celebrating now that the end is approaching. So, what follows is a little month-by-month recap of some of the big things that happened this year. With pictures.

Dined in a tiny glass box on top of the Palais de Tokyo (an amazing Christmas gift from Daniel's parents). Partook of the bi-annual French soldes. Sadly said goodbye to Daniel as he headed back to California after his Christmas visit. Tried very hard to stay warm.

Took a trip to Cairo to visit my aunt and cousin. Rode a camel, saw the pyramids at Giza, ate fa'atir and took a falucca ride on the Nile. Also ate a lot of chocolate chip cookies.

Watched the Chinese New Year Parade on Valentine's Day in Paris. Visited the Musee Quai Branly for the first time.

Flew out to San Francisco for Daniel's birthday. Ate my first hamburger in months from Taylor's Automatic Refresher (that was still the name then...) and took a ride Larkspur ferry. Watched lots of Eastbound and Down while he recovered from surgery on his Achilles' tendon.

At the end of the month, my brother came to visit me in Paris on his spring break and tried his very first crepe.

Ate McDonalds for Easter breakfast while spending the weekend in the Loire Valley. Also did wine tastings and toured the chateau where Sleeping Beauty was written.
Took a trip to Florence to for my 24th birthday.

My friend Anna came from Spain to visit me in Paris and got stranded when volcanic ash from Eyjafjallajökull started interrupting air traffic. Later, my friend Kinzie also came to visit and it was a mini-reunion from when we studied abroad together in Paris in college.

Took another trip to California. Attended Bay to Breakers dressed as a mouse.

Also attended a wedding at Kunde Winery in Sonoma, not dressed as a mouse.

Returned to Paris and felt homesick for California. Assuaged my sadness with lots and lots of Berthillon ice cream.

My parents came to visit me in Paris and we took a tour bus to Beaune with the Chevaliers du Tastevin. We ate far too much food and drank far too much wine and my mother fell in love with a bulldog named Stanley.

Later in the month, I took a day trip to Giverny to see Monet's house and gardens. I met a group of American girls studying for a few months in Paris and rented bikes with them. We saw cows and took lots of pictures of the scenery.

I also finally (finally!) made it to the YSL exhibit at the Petit Palais by waiting for 45 minutes before the museum opened. Huzzah.
Found out I'd be staying in Paris until the end of the year.

Stayed awake nights because it was so hot in my un-air-conditioned apartment. 
Went to Berlin for three days with my friend Cristina. I tried Currywurst for the first time, drank lots of fruit juice, got a sandal tan, visited the Berlin Wall, and watched ballroom dancing on the banks of the Spree river at night.

I came back to Paris for Bastille day, which I celebrated with petillant and cupcakes with my friend Dakota. We saw Owen Wilson riding a bicycle in the Marais.

I saw a concert of Gregorian Chants at Notre Dame in Paris.

Towards the end of the month, I flew back to California to work out of company headquarters while the whole French office went on summer vacation. 

Made an impromptu visit to San Diego to surprise my friend for her 25th birthday. Also got to visit my parents and dogs. My mom made fried chicken.
Took a trip to Napa and Sonoma with Daniel and my family. We had an amazing dinner at the Farmhouse Inn and an unsatisfying vegetarian lunch at Ubuntu. We went wine tasting at Opus One and visited the French Laundry gardens.

In the middle of the month, I returned to Paris and found everything, unsurprisingly, still closed. I rented a velib' for the first time and kicked myself for not having tried it sooner. On a Saturday, I took a trip to Chartres to see the cathedral.


I took the train Rouen to see an exhibit on Impressionist art at the Musee de Beaux Arts de Rouen. I also saw where Joan of Arc was burnt at the stake.

On the 10th, I flew to Copenhagen.  I visited the cemetary where Kierkegaard is buried, took lots of hot baths, ate smorrebrod and took a boat tour in the pouring rain. I walked around Christianshavn, which reminded me of Berkeley, and spent hours wandering in the botanical gardens.

France went on strike over changes to benefits and the retirement age. I bought an absurd vintage fur coat at the Salon du Vintage.

Daniel came to Paris and then we traveled to Rome, Bologna, and the Lago di Garda.

My Mom arrived in on Armistice Day and I spent a very lovely 10 days eating and galavanting with her in Paris.

Ate canned tunafish for Thanksgiving dinner.

First snow of the season in Paris.

In December, I made the move from France to California. I spent Christmas in La Jolla at my parent's house. We celebrated Thanksgiving in December, decorated the Christmas tree, and made three kinds of Christmas cookies.

We spent Christmas Eve with my dear friend Lena and her parents. We had caviar and champagne (one of my very favorite traditions) along with some of the treats from my Christmas box.

For the days leading up to New Years Eve, Daniel and I booked a trip to Chicago to stay with friends.
Which is where we are now. 

All in all, 2010 has been a pretty marvelous year. Looking forward to new adventures in 2011.

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