Sunday, 23 April 2017
Whew, I have survived the devil, or at least it appears so for now. So without ado I shall resume where I left off. It has been too long.
Some people have a knack of sniffing out misfortune in others. So there they were, Mr. Pride and Mrs. Empathy, standing in front of an old shop whose previous owner had run himself into a deep debt for the reason I cannot tell you because I have to be careful when recounting a true story. The closest I can get is that the reason was very French in this city of love…or lust seems more like it.
The pair dreamt of running an upscale restaurant though neither had no knowledge on restaurant business. Mrs. Empathy insists she is an expert which is some exceedingly optimistic view considering she had run every eatery she had ever managed down into the ground, but in Paris there are always people who would pay good money for the license to operate a restaurant. With the real estate price going up every year in Paris, any debt Mrs. Empathy incurred would be paid off. You would question the wisdom of Mr. Pride’s judgement in appointing her as the manager of his newly acquired property, but incompetence did not matter in the touristic areas. The unsuspecting tourists would always be beguiled to dine. Thus, the locals in le Marais would only trust shops or eateries that had had success in other areas already, or the long standing establishments.
The long standing establishments provide good food, but it is hard to find a lousy chef in Paris anyway. The difference comes down to the personality of the manager whose history the locals are well aware of. The price may be similar but some managers would cut corners. The challenge in Paris is not to be ripped off. And I learnt the hard way that the residents living near immoral restaurants can be a health hazard. To be continued.