Reflections on Novità Bistro

In Philadelphia, PA at the address listed below I visited a bistro with this name. It was an African-styled restaurant, and the only reason I went there is because I found it on Google, and it was a close choice for having tajines.

If you don’t know what a tajine is, then you shouldn’t be reading this as you’re unworthy.

At any case, upon cleaning out my wallet today I found the card for it and decided to post a bit about it as I probably won’t be back to Philadelphia anytime in the near millennium.

I can’t remember the name of the dish that I had, but it was a normal Moroccan tajine with chicken, olives and lemon. It was tasty but I found it a bit dry and unauthentic. I much preferred the ones that I had whilst in France that were served by actual Tunisian people.

The other interesting fact about this resteraunt is that it’s bring your own bottle, which I’ve never heard of and thus neglected to do. I feasted inside to avoid the rain, was interrupted by an annoying picky-eating American clan, and then went on my way.

It’s reasonably priced and decent food.

You can find it here:

Novità Bistro
1608 South Strett



Jet-legged as hell and not able to sleep before the hour of 04.00 even after going to bed at 22.00 is becoming a bitch. Maybe it’s the fact that I don’t have a pillow or blanket, or something comfortable, but I think it’s more of the fact that I’m not used to the way things are here yet. I will adjust I’m sure, but I think also the part about not eating as much also is not helping. If I could eat a little more I would be a little more happy, as I feel quite famished, but since I don’t have my student card yet I am unable to get my CROUS card so that I can get my full meal for 2.70€. I’m sick of spending +9€ on meals, as that’s quite expensive and we can’t find anywhere in the city that is cheap as of yet.

However, on a happier note I went and got a baguette for the first time today for about 0.80€ which I’m not sure if it’s cheap or not, but I am having difficulties with identifying the money as it all looks the same, and everything is rounded to the nearest Euro and therefore I am stuck with just bills, and I would rather have change. Oh well, I will adapt eventually but I still have to figure stuff out!

I found a nice little inet café around the corner called “Net sur Cour” which charges only 1.05€ for a ½hr of usage, which is quite reasonable (I think). I e-mailed my mom and some other people that were of the 20 e-mails in my inbox, to tell them that I’m okay but struggling in my hot room with no internet connection. I’m not sure what the consièrge said to this other girl because I wasn’t paying attention, but I think he said something about the internet in our rooms not being hooked up until October. Even still that’s really late for doing that, and it doesn’t seem really fair considering that we will have been here for 15 days. Let’s hope that it works out and I can get on the internet without having to pay a massive amount anymore! Still nobody around my region of the house, so I’m not sure if anyone else is moving in or anything, but the 6 flights of stairs is kicking my ass everytime. I think I will start to avoid going up and down the stairs all together.

We met Dr. Lee our director today and we went around and took a little unofficail tour of our university campus. There are three universities in the same region all squished together, so it’s kind of confusing but I’m sure everything will work out. Université Louis Pasteur seems to be the university for social sciences and environmental things, along with maths and Sciences (oddly). Université Marc Bloch is the one for languages and literatures, religions, and arts which I’m apart of and will be at the Institut. The last one is Université Robert Schumann which is for law, politics, european studies, business, and journalism, in other words the one with all the boring smart people 😉 Which means I go to thew weiner university for people who love languages.

Go team Marc Bloch, minus the “Dossiers” that are so confusing to fill out, especially since Dr. Lee doesn’t help us much with his little ‘example’ which is about 4 years out of date and obviously the forms have changed! He is a tad weird, and he went away this weekend for a ‘personal dinner date’ with someone in Paris. We are not sure what to think, as he’s probably having an affair with someone while we sturggle here. Still haven’t found a good cheap place to eat, but we have discovered that the city is confusing but really small and easy to find our way back. However, we have been ‘hit on’ by many people from Morocco who identify us as ‘mes blondes’ which really we don’t want to be known on, because in l’argot (slang) it translates to ‘my whores/sluts’. Oddly, in both Quebecois and France French ‘les blondes’ signifies blonde people, but when you use the personal pronoun ‘mon/ma’ it is reffering to a slut of some sort.

Apart from that our tour was lame and Dr. Lee just walked us around the city and we had no idea where we were so it was pretty much useless. Now we know what is there, just don’t know how to get there at all! We shall learn in time, but hopefully getting down and into things with the Stasbourgoise will help a little bit. I really should call up Aurélien at some point and ask him to take me out and see some things in the city; it would be very nice of him, but I don’t know if he would be willing, as I am pretty much a random person.

So Ginette, Crystal and I were sitting outside our residence talking and laughing when this guy came out to do a little bit of smoking and he noticed that we were laughing in English, and he asked us where we were from. I said from Sweden/Canada, and the others said they were French Canadian, and he was like all excited becasue he’s from Texas. He’s not the hick texan with the weird accent or anything, as he proceeded to tell us that he spent a year in Normandie studying, and really his French is amazingly good! I was quite impressed, and he talks funny but in a nice thing. He lives on my floor but on the other side of the residence, so being all chum chum with him is as likely as me falling off the roof; none. He seems to either like, or like to visit Ginette (or maybe it’s just because they live close to each other), but in any case she calls him “Buddy Eli” because his name is Elias, and apparently we are all ‘buddies’ or something. He had to go inside and do his laundry so after that he talked to the security guard, and we went to bed. In hindsight I think he has a thing for Ginette, but who knows as he was super-friendly. I just wish someone could really make an effort; maybe once classes start things will get better and I can form my own sort of circle of friends. Sucks that I live in a place way out of the way though, and it’s really difficult to figure things out like that. The French are weird like that!

Amber arrived today also, and she was actually in Place Kléber when we were walking through there coming from food and she heard us and then we talked for awhile about our flights and such, and filled each other in about how things are going to work and such. She had a great flight, so I’m emmensley jelous and I just am not impressed that I had such horrible time. I still haven’t slept very much and I’m struggling to get all those things going. I have no form of communication with anyone (as our inet doesn’t work) and I don’t have a phone at all in my room or anything. So if I’m not doing something planned, I’m just either walking around by myself, or existing in my room by-myself. It’s really not that much of an interesting life, so far! Please all people to be nicer and more outgoing, becasue I’m clearly struggling. Maybe Eli will surprise me and come knocking at my door sometime soon, as it would be nice to see a familiar face sometime!