I just love this girl. You just gotta love this girl. Her name is Paloma. She is originally from Peru. She is 27 and works nights here at this bar somewhere in the 10th arrondisement of Paris.
It was a Sunday night but the bar was packed despite the fact there was no DJ not like Fridays and Saturday nights. It was a slow laid back night.
Paloma, the girl working behind the bar also seemed surprised at the good turnout on this particular Sunday night.
It was our second night at this bar. Me and my newly formed Paris ‘posse’ gave out our orders to this now familiar sweet girl. I asked for their new signature cocktail ‘Le Macaron’ – my boisson du nuit (drink of the night).
Since it is a rather newly rolled out drink she is still getting used to it not like their other signature drinks that she can make – in a manner of speaking – even in blindfold.
She had to focus on this drink otherwise she might mess it up just like the faux pas from the night before when she was making the same drink for one of the bosses. Because we were busy chatting, instead of gin she added rhum. Still, as it turned out it tasted quite good actually as she had me try it. After all it was my ‘creation’ she says.
Le Macaron – a new signature cocktail at this bar. Among others it contains white vermouth, dry gin, macaron syrup (obviously, hence the eponymous name) and the rest I promised her I will keep a secret. (Price: 12 euros)
But beyond these intricate drinks she contrives – masterly and like a boss I must mention – nightly at this artsy, hip bar what is amazing about this lady is her feistiness in and about life.
From our little chats during that two-night visit I got to learn a few bits which she happily shared about herself.
At 18 she left home – her home city Lima, Peru – to go to Europe. She went to Salamanca, Spain to study Art History. After a few years she moved to Sienna in Italy and continued her studies via the Erasmus Mundus programme and whilst working part time as a bartender.
However much she loved Sienna after 3 years she decided she was bored with her life there and moved to Paris where she has been working for three years now.
The goal of pursuing her Art History degree and hopefully, start a career in it in France is still very much alive. She said she is still applying to get into one of the Arts programs and it is NOT that easy to get in as she has to compete for a limited number of slots in writing essays and sitting in interviews as part of the application with other students, other French students, mostly, who have the command of the French language – written and oral – their whole life. How does she stand a chance at that? That is what she is up against right now but is still hopeful she soon gets accepted.
Paloma speaks Spanish (her native tongue), Italian, French, and English quite fluently. Her English is superior and sans any trace of the ‘Romance language’ accent.
Languages that come in handy as she has to face an international crowd every night at this gig of hers in between Art studies.
This little crafty piece of technologically advanced device is how life behind the bar is made simple. It is basically a hose spout connected to the different drink sources.
The bosses of this place. Paloma from Peru and her equally awesome partner Mahile from Ivory Coast. Queen Mahile speaks five languages.
Epilogue: So our girl Paloma speaks four different languages but admitted she’s jealous when I told her I can speak Arabic. She has always wanted to learn to speak Arabic but just never had the chance to.