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

Cuttage of Trees

To wake up on a Monday to find all the trees along Boul. de la Victoire missing is a little creepy. Apparently as we slept the city came around and trimmed back all the branches and basically left the trees with nothing so that they wouldn’t have to worry about autumn. Apparently this is the way that the French deal with lazyness to avoid problems, which really isn’t a problem but ey think it is anyways. What a wonderful way to start out the week, don’t you think? Despite this, all was okay.

Funny story, on Sunday when Charlotte came home, she came over to say hey and I was still lounging around in my pjs being lazy as a sloth. We went to go cook some chicken, and that creepy pair of Moroccons followed us yet again. This time it was even weirder because we were in her room and they walk by and say hello, so I think we felt the need to talk to them for a few minutes. She asked thet all one of them to help her fix her door since we weren’t tall enough, so he did and the meanwhile the creepy guy started talking to us and took interest in the fact we were foreign and coming from nice countries. Then he was very odd and he came out and asked “Vous êtes ensembles, comme vous vous sortez?” we both laughed and said no, and then he took everything a step farther and asked “Ahh d’accord, donc l’as-tu frappée?” and of course I answer “quoi” not fully understanding the meaning of what he was saying. He said it agin, and I said “No” and then he asked why not. I was like WTF you perv, why are even asking this; so we shut the door on his face and then laughed on the floor for about 20 minutes.

French slang is weird, but of course we aren’t sleeping together. We should have told them that she had a boyfriend so that they won’t bother us anymore, but it’s unlikely since now they know where she lives. Luckily for me they have no idea where I live!

Tuesday dawns on us, and I was a bit silly staying up late on Monday, but I can’t help 8 hour Skype calls helping out a friend, so it’s all good. I decided not to go to morning classes because 1) I woke up and was blind and 2) I was choking on my tounge, so I just went back to bed and passed out. The homework due was stupid and I had no interset in doing anything, so whatever. Classes were good, but the person that’s stalking me who I thought was from Azerbaijan, actually turns out to be from Moldova. I’m avoiding all contact thus far, in fear that I will be attacked and such random things like this.

Wednesday consisted of going to the laundramat where there were two girls from Skåne there talking, and of course I couldn’t help but laugh at their accent and struggle to understand what they were saying. They didn’t understand how the machines worked at the place, so we were giggling as they struggled and then helped them. It’s more expensive than our one in the Galia, but it works 50% faster, so I don’t mind spending another 1.50€ and walking 20 minutes to it. Next time I take the tram, quite frankly.

Still no plans for my holiday, so I’m a bit upset about that, but most importantly my bloody keyboard is broken and the Shift doesn’t work, so i’m pissed and I’m ordering a new one from Holland. It’s the only European country that carries it, so I have a Dutch friend helping me out with that, thank God. I need to get it soon though, as it’s driving me crazy to not have a shift key.

Now going to make dinner with Charlotte, so not much else going on, at least as I’m aware of.


PS: Yes I’m holding back because typing is very awkward at this point without a Shift key.



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!