One of my most embarrassing moments from my first trip to Paris:
My first ever breakfast in Paris, on my very first day, was at a little corner restaurant near my hotel in the 15th. It was a quiet area, and the restaurant was quaint but lovely.
The problem? They must not get many tourists, because no one spoke English and there were no English menus.
The other clue: There were no tourists at this restaurant. Only a few locals.
Since I couldn’t communicate with anyone and the waiter couldn’t make any suggestions in English, I ended up ordering the only thing I recognized on the menu: chocolate mousse.
Yes, I ate chocolate mousse. For breakfast. For my very first meal ever in France.
When I gave my order, the waiter lifted an eyebrow and asked me a question. Pretty sure it was something along the lines of: “That’s all you want?”
I just nodded emphatically and started my day super hungry and with a sugar high.
SIDE NOTE: I didn’t know what to order for coffee, either. When I asked for a macchiato, the guy gave me another strange look. After running through all the coffee commercials I’d seen over the years, I said: “Cafe ole?”
He gave me a small coffee with milk. When I saw it on the menu, I realized it’s spelled “cafe au lait,” NOT “cafe ole” like they spell it everywhere in San Antonio.
I wonder if everyone back home knows this, because I sure didn’t. 😐
– Notes from my first trip to Paris (November 2011)