You may scoff at this request, or you might have a lot of fun! Finally, I go to Paris in September 2010. One week is not enough so two it is. I will have a lovely apartment in the heart of Paris, so far so good, 1st Ar. In order to have more money to spend on this museum of a city, and because I am an independent little cuss, I plan to cook most of my meals, or at least prepare them. My first effort after getting to the apartment will be a quick grocery trip, to the Monoprix, because I arrive on a Saturday, and want to make it thrugh til Monday. I plan to walk, pack picnic lunches, and energy snacks, have petit dejeuner in the lovely apartment, and likely eat the evening meal there as well. Now, of course, if I provide my own meals, I could purchase nicer ingredients. I could go to all the fun markets, bakeries, boulangeries, and so on. So there is an argument to be made for the idea of immersing in the culture by cooking for yourself. I will, I am sure, enjoy a meal out here or there, but not as a rule, just for the experience of the fantastic location mostly (e.g. lunch at the Musee d"Orsay perhaps).
I have traveled extensively in Europe as a child and and adult, and I usually rent an apartment and spend a week in a chosen capitol (unpack once!), so I am not completly new to this idea, but I am new to Paris (which I have always thought a bit daunting for me, ergo the two weeks to get THAT worked out).
I am writing to get input: meal planning, picnic suggestions, grocery/market suggestions, grocery lists in particular. The apartment has a small fridge AND a similar sized (dare I say it) freezer. It also has an oven and four burner stove(!). I assume, of course, that they work. Yes, it does lack an automatic dishwasher, so there. ;)
I look forward to any and all suggestions. As you might imagine, I have nearly as much fun planning as I will going, and being there. Thank you in advance!