French language classes
I’ve studied French at two schools in Paris and worked with a bunch of individual tutors in Paris, and most of them..Not Good. Then I found Langue Onze, which was by far the best experience. Located in a creaky 2nd floor walk-up in the 11th, Langue Onze is run by fun, social instructors who know how to teach adults. Classes are small and I learned a great deal. The school also organizes explorations of unusual corners of the city (as in, not Notre Dame), and every day there’s a pause for tea and biscuits where students from all different levels get to know one another.
Another resource is the ugly Conversation Exchange web site — a place to find people in your city who speak French (or any of a bunch of other languages), and want to improve their English. I learned about it from a student at Langue Onze and have met people through the site who are now friends, both in Paris and San Francisco. Like other online relationship-builders, some people I met were duds, but more often they’ve been interesting, outgoing and hugely helpful with my French.
Favorite Paris Blogs
David Lebovitz is the always entertaining, beautifully photographed (young) granddaddy of them all.
Paris by Mouth. Discover free tastings around Paris, recent restaurant reviews, and book insider food and wine tours with smart guides.
Not Drinking Poison in Paris. Aside from having a name that should belong to the star of a detective series, Aaron Ayscough, is a brilliant, honest writer. Read his posts for sometime cantankerous views of restaurants and wine bars in Paris and beyond.
Booooooks. I read ’em on paper.
Some books about or based in Paris:
Parisians: An Adventure History of Paris. Graham Robb
Murder in Belleville. Cara Black
Paris to the Moon. Adam Gopnik
Notre Dame de Paris/The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Victor Hugo.
Au Bonheur des Dames/The Ladies’ Paradise. Emile Zola.
Le Ventre de Paris/The Belly of Paris. Emile Zola.
A Moveable Feast. Ernest Hemingway