Fall has FINALLY arrived in Lyon! Cue whatever the French equivalents of the Pumpkin Spice Latte, Barbour jackets, and football are(café au lait, Houndstooth capes, and… competitive cigarette smoking?). With it has unfortunately come really awful weather that is making me panic a little bit due to my impending move to London in January. Last week I took advantage of a surprisingly nice day and went to Parc de la Tete d’Or. Seeing as how it’s pretty much the sole thing Lyon is famous for (it’s a massive park with a zoo in the middle of it) and I’ve been here for over two months, I figured it was high time I went to go see it.
And I’m glad I did: it’s like autumn threw up in the park. It was the perfect place to spend a few hours drinking wine (forget the fact that it was 10am: if the French can drink at any hour then so can I #culturalimmersion) before a cooking class with some people in my programme.
A word about cooking: I love it. This is mostly for two reasons: a) I love to eat and b) my mother is a chef, so I don’t really have a choice.
However, I have my limitations. Yes, I will drive out of my way to find some rare African chocolate without which my cake would be a disaster. Yes, I will skip going to a party because I discovered a recipe for pumpkin bread that spoke to me. Yes, I have spent hours waiting for cucumbers to “rest” because apparently they’re tempermental little fuckers and that is a necessary step in preparing tzatziki.
But when I was presented with a raw leg of chicken and instructed to defeather it by a very nice French woman who didn’t seem at all fazed by this barbarous task, I reacted pretty much on par with how I would’ve reacted if she had told me to slaughter said chicken myself. Upon witnessing my horror, she assured me I could also “burn the feathers away” by holding the leg on top of a stove, but that just resulted in me accidentally broiling the poor thing and subsequently being put on mixing duty. I think I’ll stick to vegetarian cooking.
Then on Friday, I went home (ish) to Rome. Am I still harboring resentment towards the Powers That Be for making my family move away from the city of pasta, culture, and a generally better way of life and move to a country where people find thrill in trips to Target? Yes, yes I am. I spent an incredible weekend back in the city I grew up in with my two best friends, and I’m already sad that it’s over.
Parc de la Tete d’Or (McDonalds advert and all), Rome, friends at dinner