Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Random thoughts and shots around Paris

I have just recently returned to the US from Paris, France only to be welcomed with a sore throat and a headache. Before arriving, I spent three days in Paris with my boyfriend, Darrell. Paris is not on my top ten list of places to travel to, despite the wonderful reviews it receives. It is a beautiful city, with tons of cafes, shopping malls, beautiful historic buildings, and TOURISTS!

On Day one, Darrell met me at the airport and we took off to our hotel, Michelet Odeon near the Luxembourg gardens. We dropped our bags and walked to the Notre Dame cathedral, where we took a few pictures but were scared from entering after viewing the long line of people. We wondered around a bit more then decided to go to the Eiffel tower. I was shocked at how industrial the tower looked in person. But, nevertheless, we were there and we were going to stand in line to head up to the top. Once, at the top, we had beautiful views of the city. The entire trip up to the top and back down (including waiting in lines, purchasing tickets, and taking the elevator) totaled three hours!! At that point, I was quite turned off to the idea of waiting in lines since I had just flown 6 hours from Africa and had a hellish last week at school.

The following day we walked around some more, ate at a few cafés, and visited the Parisian shopping malls, Printemps and Lafayette Galleries. I wondered the aisles of the shopping mall, amazed at the selections of designer clothing. And, no, I didn’t buy anything at the mall (but did buy two blouses elsewhere).

The two places on my list to go in Paris were the Eiffel tower and the Louvre. Unfortunately, the Louvre is closed on Tuesdays. On Wednesday Darrell and I met up with a friend of mine named Sandrine in Reims (a 45minute train ride from Paris), in the Champagne country, which is the only place true champagne comes from. We enjoyed walking around, viewing the cathedral, and of course touring one of the champagne caves (and the tasting of course). Darrell and I bought a vintage bottle of champagne! And, I can’t wait to open it. I will admit that this trip to Reims was my favorite part of the whole trip to Paris. The town is simple, small, and welcoming and we had a wonderful time.

After returning by train to Paris, at 5:00pm we dashed off to the Louvre. Since it was around 5:30 when we arrived, there were no lines to the Louvre. But, don’t let the lack of lines fool you, the place was still crowded! We spent almost 2 1/2 hours in the Louvre and still didn’t get to see everything. By the end of that time, my legs ached and I was exhausted. But, we saw the important pieces like the Mona Lisa and the Venus de Milo.

My trip to Paris ended quickly, as I dashed off to the airport at 4:45 am on the last day.


Anonymous Anonymous said...


I've been following your blog for the last 1.5 years. I too worked in Cameroon for 2+ years from 2000 - 2002 as a peace corps volunteer in Maroua.

I'm glad that you had a great time and are safely back in the U.S. Also, I am so thankful for that you remained positive throughout and that attitude helped shine a positive light onto what I consider a beautiful country - Cameroon.

I also agree that travelling is one of the best things for the soul and the best learning experiences come from therein.

All the best adjusting back to American life and on the next stage of your journey.

Stacy Charles, San Francisco, CA

8:49 AM  

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