June 1 – recap of Paris (may 11-19)

I know my blogs are slowly being published, but I’ve been really busy. Luckily for me Innsbruck is one of my longest stops, next to my stop in Paris and my future stop back to Scotland. Adrian spent about 5 nights in Paris with Chris and I before he headed to Brussels while Chris and I spent 8 nights in Paris, I’m currently on night 2 of 5 in Innsbruck and I’ll be in Scotland for about 9 nights with my parents at the start of July. Anyways, since there’s a lot to talk about in Paris I better get started.

Paris May 11-19:

We took a bus on the morning of May 11th from Amsterdam to Paris, I think it took about 8 hours, I’m not exactly sure but we arrived in Paris at about 7:30 pm. We were lucky enough that my mom had a friend in Paris that had an extra room and a couch for us to stay on We took 2 underground metro lines to get to where we needed to go. When we started walking toward the apartment we realized that we were staying in a fairly wealthy part of Paris. It was awesome though, the apartment had a guest bedroom and windows that loked out directly on the small street. If you’ve seen the movie taken and you remember the apartment they stayed at in Paris, that’s what ours reminded us of (and don’t worry, I checked and I could have totally hidden under the bed). The building itself had old front doors, a tiny elevator and super old locks – we felt as though we were getting the full Perisian experience. Once we dropped our bags we grabbed some food and went grocery shopping, because we needed to save that extra money. We unpacked and we were settling into the apartment when Mike, our host came home from work. I’ve never met him before but he is a good friend of my mom and it was lovely meeting him. He made us feel so welcome. 

May 12th was our first day to explore Paris. As always we started our day off doing a Sandemans New Europe walking tour. Our tour guides name was Nancy, she’s a lovely english lady and she was full of quirky jokes and comments. I really enjoyed my time on the tour. She talked about a lot of things and we felt as though she really did love the city. After the walking tour we walked to the one and only Eiffel Tower. It was lovely, just as the pictures we’ve seen dipicted, only better. Three perfectly green lawns right in front of the tower, and an open space calling our name. We saw a few people having picnics and some guys selling beer and wine, by the end of our stay in Paris these guys were my absolute nightmare. We went to the closest grocery store, grabbed a hunk of bre, crackers and a bottle of wine. We realized we didn’t have a knife so while walking back to the Eiffel Tower we passed by a few outdoor cafes and well one was closed momentarily and so I swiped a knife off their outside table. Some may call me rebelious or even a theif, I just think of it as being resourceful. I can tell you once we got back on the lawns the brie cheese did not last long at all. We went back to the apartment for dinner after that and visited Montmatre that night. Montmatre is a part of Paris hat sits on top of the whole city, what a beautiful site that was. We sat on the stairs over looking the city, it was busy, a man was playing music and those guys were selling beer and other things that were totally unnecessary. We went for a walk around the area and grabbed a crepe and beer. I forgot to mention that you can totally drink on the streets legally in Paris (minus like 200 streets but the police just tell you to move instead of giving you a ticket – it’s awesome). We went back to the stairs to eat our crepes and derink our beer and sure enough our fbeer “friends” came around again trying to sell us beer. “Beer? I give you good price? Beer?”. Even after you say no, they still want to sell you beer, and lazer pointers. We eventually gave in an bought a couple beers for cheap, it wasn’t a bad deal, I just hate getting harassed. After that we walked to the Moulin Rouge and then went home to rest before a long day in Versailles. 

  

May 13th we did a day trip to Versailles, Nancy our tour guide from the walking tour was our guide to the 200 acre gardens. The gardens were beautiful, gorgeous fountains and it was such a lovely day. Nancy did a great job once again. Adrian and a guy named David went to the palace to do a tour but Chris and I didnn’t want to do that so we went to the middle where King Louis the 14th had a lake type thing that he used to play with his navy in. We rented a row boat and rowed the 1.3 km of the lake.Versailles took pretty much the whole day and we were absolutely exhausted afterwards. 


Rowing in Versailles

 

The next day Chris and I did Notre Dame, the cathedral was beautiful and I don’t think I took pictures of the inside because none of them did the place justic. After that we wanted to go up the towers at Notre Dame to get a good veew of the city but unfortunaely the line was so long. We went to the Bastille area instead to walk around, but once we got there it started pouring rain. Like so heavily that we had to run into the metro and we just went back to our apartment. Luckily that night the rain died down and we went on a Paris pub crawl and guess what? we were late. We met up with one of Adrian’s new friends he met at Versailles. It was so much fun. 

 

May 15th was a Friday and we were all feeling pretty rough after the pub crawl. We walked through the Luxembourg gardensand then went to the louvre. Nancy our tour guide told us that the Louvre was free on Fridays after 6pm if you’re under 26, so that’s what we did. Honestly, I wasn’t sure what else was in the Louvre besides the Mona Lisa and I’m glad it wasn’t too busy and we got to see her and take a really shitty selfie with her. We went out for dinner, Chris and I ordered “steak” and Adrian ordered a three course meal, which had a different type of steak. The waiter asked if we wanted our “steak” medium rare or well done, obviously Chris and I said medium rare. Well, the reason why I have put “steak” in quotes is because it wasnt a steak, it was a medium rare burger patty. Absolutely disgusting, we choked it down and then decided to split a creme brulee for dessert. Adrian’s meal was much more satisfying than ours. After that we went to the Eiffel Tower to see it at night. On the hour every hour it sparkels and it was so beautiful.

  

Adrian left us on the morning of May 16th to go to Brussels, we were suppose to join too but we figured since we had a free place to stay in Paris we should take advantage of it. After we dropped Adrian off at the train station we got some groceries for breakfast and our next four days before heading out. I was feeling a little under the weather, and figured I caught whatever Chris had in Amsterdam (strep throat)…so not fun.  We walked to the Arc de Triomphe, which was way bigger than I had imagined. We followed one of the paths attached to the giant roundabout around the arc de triomphe to another spectacular view of the Eiffel Tower. It is seriously an incredible piece of infrastructure, and to think it was only meant to be a temporary exhibit for a fair.

On May 17th I was still feeling really shitty so we didn’t do muc, after breakfast we wandered over to the Sainte-Germain market. WWe wandered through the stalls and it was so awesome, the market took up the strett but still left room for cars to drive by, it was pretty neat. We got crepes and then continued on another walk. I honestly can’t remember what else we did that day, but I know it wasn’t too much. We walked by the love lock bridge a couple times and decided to buy ourselves a lock. And before you think I made Chris do it, I didn’t…feelings were mutual. This trip has truly proven our compatibility and he’s a great travel partner and I can’t wait for more travels together. We bought a lock from a street vendor and brought it back to the apartment where Chris encraved some things, but I’m not going to spill all the details. That evening we went to the love lock bridge and found a spot to “lock our love”, super cheesy but whatever it was cute. After that we walked aloong the river to the embankment, sat on the river’s edge and Chris had a couple beers (because I was sick) and we watched the sunset. It was beautiful.

Embankment sunset

May 18th we decide we would go to the modern art museum, we arrived realized one whole floor was closed and decided against it. We went into this free photograph gallery and it was pictures depicting the skewed definition of photography. What is photography? Apparently gelatine and photography have a lot in common, I didn’t see it.  Also objects in ice represent photograhy because like the ice it is a moment frozen in time. Thank goodness we didn’t pay for it because I would have been so lost. I mean call me ignorant, but how can you interpret art when you don’t know the true meaning behind it, the only person that knows what these pieces of art truly represent is the artist. It’s like in English class when you’re suppose to pick apart a novel, like what does the flower in this chapter represent? I don’t know because I didn’t write the book. It could mean a million different things, depending on people’s perspectives, it’s the same thing with art. After this, we decided to go back to the apartment and take the scooters Mike had for a little rip. We scootered along the river toward the Eiffel Tower and once againhad a lovely lie down in front of it. Unfortunately these girls were taking selfies with their selfie stick right in front of us for the entire time we were there and we thought it was also going to rain and didn’t want to be caught in it. We scootered back to Mike’s and watched movies for the rest of the day.T

The evening of the 19th we left for Prague, so that morning we walked back to the love lock bridge, found our lock and then walked to this island in the middle of the rider that was attached to a bridge. We spent a bit of time therein the sun and then had a coffee before grabbing our things and heading to Prague.

 

Little island across from love lock bridge

Finally catching up, slowly but surely. I hope to be caught up by the time I leave Innsbruck.

Until next time,

Jenn

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