LouLou meets...Meg Gagnard

Last week, I had the pleasure of meeting Meg from De quelle planète es-tu? after she graciously accepted to be the second interviewee for my "LouLou meets..." series. I feel very excited to have discovered the extensive expat blogging community in Paris because I love being around all these positive, creative and friendly people. But let's get back to Meg...With her warm smile and enthusiastic outlook on Parisian life since moving here from Denver, Colorado, I found Meg to be such engaging company. I feel like I have only really touched the tip of the iceberg in terms of getting to know her so I'm looking forward to more hanging out and chats with this girl. Pull up a chair, get comfy, and let Meg tell you a little bit about herself...

Meg, how did you end up in Paris?
Paris intertwined with my Rocky Mountain lifestyle several times when I was younger, and finally after a six week immersion in Paris at the age of 14, I planned a study abroad trip to France for one year during high school. After becoming fluent in French (I was staying in Normandy, a town in which my only option was to speak French all the time), I knew I wanted to come back and use my French for my studies. I completed my Bachelor's degree at the American University of Paris,  which is also when I fell in love with the Parisian lifestyle. After that, everything just clicked into place...Oh, and I met a guy.

What do you do in Paris?
I am a digital project manager. I also daydream and put far too many holes in my walls to fill them up with picture frames.

Your Paris in 3 words.
Magic and eye candy.

Your idea of a perfect day in Paris?
My perfect day in Paris would be a weekend, one that involves a hefty sleep in (after a deep sleep of splendid dreams), finding fresh pastries that my boyfriend woke up earlier than me to go and buy. We'd eat them together over a coffee whilst listening to Fleetwood Mac and planning our day (which surprisingly enough would NOT yet have been filled up with random coffee dates and fun things to do!) This perfect day in Paris would also include some sunshine, for a stroll with no agenda - I don't care whether it is summer or winter so long as there's no rain! The day would unfold with wandering through one (or several) arrondissements, perhaps a few yummy snacks along the way, before finishing it all off with a trip to the cinema or hanging out on the quai with friends.

Which French "quirks" put a smile on your face? And which make you frown?
One quirk which makes me laugh a little bit involves the grumpy old people on the metro. You know the ones who inhale very loudly whenever there are youngsters laughing out loud, or music playing or when it's crowded? It probably sounds like I'm a horrible person, but it really does make me giggle! Another French quirk which puts a smile on my face is when the French (more specifically my host family with whom I lived when I was 16, or my in-laws) clarify how to properly cut the different French cheeses. It is a serious matter!

As for things that make me frown, one will always and forever be having to vousvouyez. It's a delicate subject in the work environment when you least expect it... Other things that make me frown are stressed out employees at the boulangerie. Also the vendeuses in the stores who, should you forget to say "bonjour" to before addressing them with a question, smirk at you rudely with a very serious look on their face before saying "BONJOUR?" to you. So my final Parisian quirk which makes me frown is that I have to remember to ALWAYS say "bonjour" before making any inquiry!

What motivated you to start blogging?
I started my blog when I was studying abroad in Lebanon. I've always loved taking pictures, and I just wanted to share anything and everything. I wanted to know about snazzy places and I wanted friends to know about the places I found snazzy. It was a creative outlet for me really...and still is to this day.

What have you learnt since you started blogging (both about yourself and the blogging community in Paris in general)?
Blogging has given me a place where I can be creative, a place that is fully in my control, and is an extension of my crazy little brain. It's a place where I can share my obsession. It has given me motivation to learn a variety of things (from CSS to Adobe Illustrator) and also how to organise promotion of my blog across different social media platforms. It really is like a micro project management and I have loved every minute of it. In terms of the blogging community in Paris, my blog has really allowed me to meet some phenomenal people, who also have a joie de vivre and the motivation for sharing moments, places or any kind of experience with one another.

Where do you look for inspiration for your blog?
For inspiration I just like walking around wherever I happen to be. I like looking through magazines and surfing the web. Pinterest can be addictive (hear hear!) Anything and everything has the potential to inspire me.

If you could hope on a plane right now, which destination would you choose, and why?
I would go to Iceland, mostly because that's just the top of my travel list at the moment. I would be happy with most destinations, but Iceland is a landscape I hope to experience in the near future.

One thing on your bucket list?
To go on a hot air balloon ride in the U.S. Somewhere beautiful such as Bryce Canyon...

What's the one thing you really miss from home that Paris cannot replace?
I couldn't decide on just one, so I'm going with these three (excluding my family of course, that's the easy answer because it's the main thing missing in my Parisian life): many feet of snow, crisp air and a blue sky, breakfast burritos and the grocery stores.

What would you miss about Paris if you left it one day?
I imagine I'd miss the proximity of things, as Paris is quite a dense city. Not to mention the fantastic public transport! Gosh, Paris is so charming...

For all us foodies out there, please could you tell us a little bit about how you became a member of Yelp elite, and what it involves exactly?
I became a Yelp Elite member of the Paris group by writing tons of reviews on Yelp, haha! I don't do Foursquare check ins, I've always been exclusive to Yelp. Being an Elite member means you're part of a little community of people who write reviews regularly, and who all happen to check in and share favourite places excessively. Once a month we all go to a little event together to discover somewhere new. It's a hoot!

Quick Fire Questions

Favourite patisserie? Tarte au citron
Favourite metro line? Line 10
Rive gauche ou Rive droite (Left bank or right bank)? Right
Red, white or rosé? Red
Favourite Parisian café? Any corner café with a terrace that happens to  be where I am!
Favourite French film? Jeux d'enfants (Love me if you dare is the English title)
Favourite Parisian museum? Musée des Arts Forains

I hope you enjoyed discovering a little of Meg's planet as much as I did. You can also find Meg on FacebookTwitter, Instagram and Pinterest. Go and say hello.

P.S. All images belong to Meg!