On my last day in Paris, I decided to take part in a bike riding food tour.
Food is a big part of my life. Food is a big part of a Parisian’s life. Why not celebrate my love for food and Paris for one last day?
The tour started at a meet-up area to pick up the bikes. It was awkward at first with no one awake enough to break the ice so the tour guide, Claudia, assured everyone that the first stop included a coffee for anyone who needed one.
The first place was a crêpe stop!
We tried the most amazing salted caramel and chocolate crêpes. What a way to start the day! Then we rode to our next stop. At this point, I was still trying to find my balance and grow my confidence. Thankfully, we were still riding in the tiny back streets.
The second place was a chocolate shop!
We tried chocolate that was tailored to our taste. I like milk chocolate and have allergies to nuts so the chocolatier helped me to choose a new flavour that didn’t put my life at risk that I would enjoy. It was so tasty!
Next we rode on the road. Aaaaaaaaaah! I certainly did not have the confidence on a bike to ride on the roads of Paris but I had no choice. We were riding along the Seine River with all the history around us and a lot of French speaking, possibly swearing at me for not riding fast enough. It was magical!
The next few places were a mixture of savoury and sweet!
We tried some beautiful Croque Monsieur & French toasts, some very French style French burgers, a Croissant and ice cream with a middle eastern twist.
As I am severely allergic to pistachios, the middle eastern foods were completely off limits. I was deeply saddened as they looked amazing but I also wanted to be alive at the end of the tour. So I allowed my eyes to eat everything instead of my stomach.
Soon after, we arrived at a beautiful boulangerie in Le Marais to try a macaron.
The boulangerie interior was in the style of the 1920s; prestigious and chic, as usual. Everyone on the tour chose their flavour of the macaron. I chose chocolate, simple but the yummiest of them all. I took a small bite and I peered into the chocolate macaron. It looked like a normal macaron. But my body didn’t feel right, so I took one anihistamine.
Anyhow, we rode our bikes to the next stop. Everyone began to walk into the store but I knew the common feeling of an allergic reaction beginning. I told my mum to give me the Epipen and then we waited for it to kick in.
As I sat on the Parisian pavement with my adrenaline leg straight out in front of me, the tour guide Anthony came out to check on me. He distracted me with a conversation about his family roots in Nice, the French Riviera while I breathed through the uncertainty of an anaphylactic attack. I listened and responded to him while the rest of the group were walking out of the store. They were enjoying their Poutine.
Everyone continued to ask if I were alright and I answered with a very uncertain Yes, I think so. But soon, everything felt normal again. I didn’t feel ready to eat any of the French Poutine so instead, I watched everyone enjoy it!
For this day, I can say that I successfully worked through an anaphylactic reaction and rode a bike on the Parisian roads.
Goal: Stay alive throughout the food tour.