Cool Texas spring weather has a way of drawing even the most hermit of characters out of the confines of their home. It’s the sense of guilt one can feel if they don’t take advantage of the limited season, if you want to call it a season. Spring in Texas doesn’t stay cool and beautiful for long—summer has a way of coming early. It’s like a 6 month stint on Mercury-hot and dry as you know what! So when Spring calls, you go out!
The hermits I’m talking about are us—yes, the *Traveling Pear*. A contradiction to our name I know, but recently we’ve done our traveling behind the glow of our laptop screens. Searching for Paris apartments and Google Earthing (that’s an Elissa word) the streets and neighborhoods we will soon call home. Not to mention the hours of college work we’ve been doing. All will come to pass soon enough and we’ll live up to our name *The Traveling Pear*.
Since the hunt for an apartment in Paris is over (we found a place for now) and college assignments were done, the *Pear* braved the traffic for an hour drive into Houston to:
1. Meet with our advisor from the American University Paris.
2. Have lunch at one of Houston’s most hip new restaurants —Philippe’s Restaurant and Lounge.
3. Feel like part of the world again.
The Chef finished his externship a few weeks back with Chef Philippe and had been waiting for an opportunity to take me to the new restaurant. Even though I had not been, I felt as though I had through the many pictures and stories I had seen and heard. Nevertheless, anticipation swirled within. The restaurant’s theme is French and Chef Philippe had affectionately named a room *Marie Antoinette*. Combine French food, fine dining and a room called Marie Antoinette; I would have to be comatose not to agree!
So there we were amid a mixture of French furnishings, photographs (some of which are from the Shaw collection) all fused with modern clean lines and a touch of fur and chiffon. Matt took me behind the scenes to where the magic takes place—a room filled with rows of stainless steel, sharp blades, hot pots and a lot of hustle. My natural instinct was to flee immediately back into the pretty atmosphere I had stepped from. This however, is a playground for my Chef, so I agreed to stay and meet the ones he admires the most. We found Chef Manuel Pucha, the Chef de cuisine, and the *star* of the show–Executive Chef Philippe Schmit, a very charming individual, like his restaurant.
Back at the table Matt and I almost forgot we were still in Texas. While sipping my rose champagne and nibbling on scallops and risotto I hummed along to a tune by Carla Bruni Sarkozy, the model, actress, singer and first lady of France! It was the most enjoyable lunch we’ve had in quite some time.
Back in Galveston we hopped on our beach cruisers and went for ride to enjoy the last few weeks we have in this little beachside city. A treat to ourselves for the many weekends we’ve spent confined to our apartment while the world went out to play.