I did not want to visit Rue du Cherche Midi in the rain.
Any street with a name that implies a yearning for the sunny south requires a visit when the sun is shining. Alas, it was rarely shining when we visited Paris.
So it was a cloudless day (and one of our last in Paris) when we strolled down this narrow street, which is quieter than I imagined. It was mid-afternoon and the market on nearby Boulevard Raspail had just closed.
I wanted to buy a loaf of the famous Poilane bread, but since it was nearly our last day in Paris, my French frugality gene got the better of me and I decided to wait until our next visit. We already had a fresh baguette waiting in our tiny kitchen and more shopping to do, so it seemed prudent.
But I did take a few photographs. I was enchanted with the boutiques along Cherche Midi; the clothing in the windows really spoke to me (and now I understand why the French use the term “faire du leche vitrine,” which means to lick the windows, for the process we call window shopping).
“I have to go lick the windows,” I told my husband when he sauntered on and I wanted to linger.
Pretty things in windows (which always include food in Paris) are the stuff of dreams. We cannot always afford them. But they give us something to yearn for.
Sometimes a taste (or a lick) offers more long-term satisfaction than a whole meal.
Note: I've heard several explanations for the charming name of this equally charming street. The one I like best is "seeking the mid-day sun." It is my understanding the street got its name from a sundial on a building there.