Sunday, January 06, 2013

A Day of Indulgences

Saturday January 5, 2013 - a day of indulgences.
So far this trip has been one long indulgence and battle with temptation. It's that time of year and being in Paris isn't helping one bit. Every which way you turn is temptation.

Hell and paradise at the same time.
I was beginning to feel quite overhelmed by it all. Then I came across a quote from George Saunders' book of essays, The Braindead Megaphone and I was saved (I hope).

“The mind is a machine that is constantly asking:
What would I prefer?
Close your eyes, refuse to move, and watch what your mind does.What it does is become discontent with That Which Is.
A desire arises, you satisfy that desire, and another arises in its place.
This wanting and rewanting is an endless cycle for which, turns out, there is already a name: samsara.
Samsara is at the heart of the vast human carnival: greed, neurosis, mad ambition, adultery, crimes of passion, the hacking to death of a terrified man on a hillside in the name of A More Pure And Thus Perfect Nation--
And all of this takes place because we believe we will be made happy once our desires have been satisfied.
I know this. But still I'm full of desire...
from "Buddha Boy”
― George Saunders, The Braindead Megaphone
It's either develope resistance or make do with plaster macarons
Does one get to wear the crown if one resists temptation?
I'll start practicing tomorrow since Raids-Patisseries invited me to tea today at Le Meurice. What's a girl to do?

Go of course and try not to feel too tortured ahem


  1. Anonymous10:19 AM

    Hmmm. This post may have done it. Thanks for the ride, but today I unsubscibe.

    1. So why does this jerk feel the need to announce his departure? Sigh. Although it's all too true that les connards never die, I thought they at least had the good sense to just fade away.

  2. I think this unsubscriber is suffering from this time of year - empty feelings, lack of enthusiasm, disconnection. Take heart - Spring is just around the corner!


  3. As far as plaster macarons is concerned, Emily Dickinson would, with a wave of hand, exclaimed (pointing then to the real thing), "Fortitude incarnate here is laid away"

    Then again, didn't Doris Day sing "Sam Sara Sara, I'll always want more, want more ... Sam Sara, Sara!"?

    1. It's Que sera sera cherie

    2. Carol, that was a JOKE, a clever play on words from Spanish to Hindi. (Is samsara Hindi?)

      My favorite quote of the day is from Voltaire: Of course life is a shipwreck, but that doesn't stop us from singing in the life boats.

      I think of your blog as a rousing aria.

    3. Anonymous8:35 PM

      The concept of samsara is closely associated with the belief that one continues to be born and reborn in various realms in the form of a human, animal, or other being (depending on karma).
      In Hinduism, it is avidya, or ignorance, of one's true self that leads to ego-consciousness of the body and the phenomenal world. This grounds one in kāma (desire) and the perpetual chain of karma and reincarnation. Through egoism and desire one creates the causes for future becoming. The state of illusion that gives rise to this is known as Maya.
      Through ascetic practice one finally attains sanctity and liberation (moksha or mukti)...yikes Carolg

    4. Thank you, Vivian Swift,
      you are right, it was meant to be a play of words.

  4. Anonymous11:37 AM

    I read this as I ponder wandering down to the new argentinian bakery in my neighborhood. What is this girl to do? Go, of course!

    Thank you for your lovely blog.


  5. My remedy when in Paris...indulge and walk a lot.
    My first taste of Paris's warm chocolate croissants is something I dream about while in Chicago.

  6. It's an interesting journey, this life of ours...Paris certainly would seem to have the full gamut...I read that moderation is part of Buddhist philosophy, neigher deprivation, nor over-indulgence...and of course, those definitions are different for each person....

  7. PS, Carol. A book that I enjoyed that is perhaps related to Saunders' book is The Geography of Bliss. ~Rita

  8. Anonymous1:52 PM

    Don't worry. Enjoy

  9. Ooh, la la! Le Meurice. Do tell...

  10. Shelley2:25 PM

    Hi, Carol Very interesting post in this bastion of sensory indulgence! Facing same problem myself -- maybe all of us? -- the craving, the indulgence, satisfaction for a minute, craving again, the empty endless cycle. In addition to the psychological reasons behind all of this, there's also biology -- apparently exposure to the temptation makes our neurons scream for more. Cold turkey for two weeks and the cell memory seems to die down.... I've gone from swallowing a entire bakery at one gulp to passing by with nary a glance. Blasphemy. Of course more difficult to abstain with your blogging duties. Just looking, not eating would take longer but might work, but how would this affect your jounalistic eye?.... Green drinks (the powdered kind you mix with water, very mild taste) seem to help a lot too in cutting down cravings. Then, theoretically, one could eat a pastry by choice, rather than driven by maniacal need. Hasn't happened yet, for me.... Anyone have any ideas about decreasing craving?

  11. In regard to craving sweets, I picture my overweight's quite a deterrant.

    1. This one could work!!!
      Grand merci


  12. I'm naturally skinny, I love to look at your pics of delicious food & not worry about anything :)

  13. Barbara12:32 PM

    A day of indulgeces continues...
    Has me thinking that I would like to perpetuate my journey to nirvana in a macaron t-shirt. I do not see one on your website - but might have overlooked them. Do you not have them?
    I do this as my adopted son sends me macarons from Paris while I sit out the winter here on Maryland's Eastern Shore...:)
    All best et merci

  14. You're in Paris. Don't resist ANYTHING! Whatever happens, whatever you indulge in when in Paris doesn't count! Really!


  15. Well PB~
    It looks like you had your share of indulgences at Le Meurice! (Raids-Patisserie has the photo!)

    You haven't mentioned swimming off the temptations....

  16. Carol dear,

    In the spirit of honesty I'll say am not a materialistic person since my brother and parents died. It's truly amazing how little I have and want.
    The only want is in relation to/for my son. Other than that, am happy to feast the eyes and you (and my cat) provide that!

    Hugs... :)

  17. PS: Forgot to stay....and total admiration for all you do, your talents, productivity, forward-goingness, insights, generosity...your wellspring for all to enjoy...making the world prettier, better, more informed.

  18. Anonymous7:41 PM

    Carol, this is your best one yet! what a fabulous quote, esp. at the beginning of this new year - thank you so much for your intelligence, literary knowledge and creative spirit - merci beaucoup! I'm going to our local library and get Saunders' book right now.

    Have a grand day,

  19. Anonymous11:23 PM

    The sentiment gives deep pause...

    on a lighter note, or perhaps heavier,
    I feel like I am gaining weight merely
    eye feasting your blog!
    Enjoy the tea -you're there,
    You will be elsewhere soon enough to take on life's demands.
    Oh, my what a sobering thought- hit the delete button. xo K

  20. Anonymous1:47 PM

    Funny, as I read your post I was so inspired and I love your blog EVEN more! So it cracked me up that the "un-subscriber " had to send a sour note. Haha! Thought provoking AND beautiful. Informative and Glamorous. Creative and Artistic. Fun and Fabulous. That's what PB is for me. Thank you for all the great posts and for keeping the good stuff coming!
    All the Best to you! Fan from Rural Oregonxoxo

  21. Well I think it's great that you're being tortured sweetly in Paris and great to see you're making the most of it all. Fun images - although less tempted with plaster macarons, but admittedly I have a bag hanging in our toilet!

  22. Fabulous post. My mind would definitely prefer a tub of speculoos icecream! Every day in Pars is a day of indulgences for me, perhaps it's lucky that I can only get there every few years at most?

  23. I think you'd feel less guilty if you had a couple of friends join you and sample a petit peau of everything! (you could be good the NEXT day!) It all looks amazing! I can understand why you have decision overload! PS Think of all your readers slobbering over all the delicious pictures and being able to have none!

    1. Bonne idee! Svp come help me and bring friends!

    2. I would love to! Alas my health does not permit at the moment but once I get myself sorted I'll be there faster than you can say eclair! PS bring bear! :)

      Best wishes!


Love hearing from you