Sorry it has taken me so long to blog about my trip..it's intimidating to write about a whole trip and make it concise enough for a blog. Anyway, the rumors are true; Paris is amazing. Believe everything you hear except that the French don't like Americans. We didn't encounter one mean person. I think the person that started that rumor is a super sensitive midwestern person. Maybe I don't have a high standard of niceness being from New York, but Parisians are delightful.
Day one we decided to try and get a feel for the city and there was a lot to take in. There is such an amazing history there. The Eiffel Tour was about 3 blocks from our hotel. We hopped on the open bus tour to get a feel for what we wanted to do. We were amazed at the beauty and elegance of the city. No one walking around in sweatpants, one building more beautiful then the next, beautiful gardens and statues everywhere..true beauty; people and places. Notre Dame on the other hand was seriously creepy. Monsters and gargoyles protruding out the sides of the church from all sides. We ate at two fantastic cafes that day. The first was a french brassiere where we got delicious cheese croque, salad and wine. For dinner we got a yummy hummus and falafel platter.
Day two we slept in a little considering that we were both on about 2 hours of sleep for the last 48 hours. Our hotel offered a yummy breakfast that we enjoyed daily. We decided to take advantage of our 3 day open bus ticket and head to the Louvre. The Louvre is the home of the Mona Lisa and Venus de Milo. It is also a former palace to King Louis. There is something about standing in the exact place of these historical figures where historical things actually happened that gives me goosebumps all over. The Mona Lisa is quite small. I was warned, however, it truly is small! But beautiful and breath taking in its own right. The Gardens outside the Louvre were amazing. It is the central park of Paris where people picnic, enjoy a bottle of wine and each others company. It truly is the city of Romance. Love was seen all around us with no bias on age or pairing types.
After the Louvre we took the metro to Montemarte, my favorite part of Paris. We went to Sacred Heart Church which sits high above the city with a view that goes on for miles. There were small bands and entertainers that lined the streets and artists to draw your picture. I decided to get one. We got dinner at an italian place. So so delicious! My mouth waters just thinking about it.
After dinner we returned to our hotel area and decided to try to go to the top of the eiffel tour, however, it was almost 11pm and closed. We heard music close by and stumbled upon a group of about 100 people with an italian guy singing all american hits. That's one thing I noticed, that all the music I heard were american songs. But this guy was great and the crowd was fun. There were guys walking around selling bottles of champagne and wine. Naturally we got one but here were no cups so we chugged it from the bottle..it was perfect. Lots of fun..too much fun ;)
By day 3 we pretty much mastered the metro. well, kinda. But we still used it as our main mode of travel. We went to Museum D'Orssey which is home to the paintings of Van Gogh and Monet. After, we went back to Notre Dame to go inside. I am happy to report that it is not scary inside like it is outside. Beautiful nonetheless. Next we got ice cream at the most famous ice cream place in Paris..mmmmmm. enough said. We then navigated our way to "Le Deus Magot" which is a famous cafe where Hemingway and F Scott Fistzgerald wrote. Its famous and they know it which is why 2 glasses of wine and the equivalent of a grilled cheese was our most expensive meal of the trip. We hopped on our last leg of the open bus tour and passed by the ritz wear Princess Diana had her last drink and the tunnel where she died :( People still place flowers at the site. We found ourselves on the other side of the Eiffel tour which has beautiful fountains. It is also the exact land mark where Hitler posed for a pic. Ew. This is also where we attempted the "jumping" picture. Funny stuff. then we went to yet another cafe and got a quiche and salad followed by the most amazing crepe. After dinner we went on a riverboat tour down the siene.. very classy.
Day four we went to St. Chapelle a famous and beautiful chapel known for its amazing and durable stained glass windows. Next, the Concierge, which at one point was a palace and then the state prison. We saw Marie Antionettes cell and chair where she actually sat..again..goose bumps. We also went into Il Invalides which was a hospital for injured soldiers and the disabled back in the day. Today it serves as a museum of the world wars and Napoleans Tomb. For some reason I like the dead, creepy things. Looking at this huge Coffin its weird to think there is a tiny little famous corpse in there. whatever im weird. After we went to, yes, another cafe where I got the most amazing french onion soup. yum yum. Next, we rented bikes. Now I don't know if you met me and my mom but she is in shape and athletic and I am not so much. So I panted and sweated my way across the city, mom was at home. After a little wine for refeul I did much better. For dinner we went to another french cafe and got mussels and pasta with salmon..again, so good. Next we went to an underground jazz club. It was poppin, yes, on a Monday night. There were some pretty legit couples dancing there. One old guy kept asking mom to dance..he kinda looked like santa..it was hysterical. One of the really good dancers asked us to dance and I decided to give it a go..I can dance but couples is very different..Hence, I did not do very well and Im pretty sure his toes were soar the next day. But it was fun.
The last day in Paris we had to go the the Eiffel tower. We decided to climb the stairs since there was no line for that and a huge line for the elevator. I quickly learned there was a reason there was no line..it was hard! I definitely worked off all the food I ate this trip..it was well worth the effort as the views at the top were breath taking. Off to Prague!
too many pictures..will post a video compilation soon!