Second weekend trip of the year! This was a trip that started off as a casual bus-ride-catching-up conversation I had with my oldest and very dear friend Leigh (current Zurich resident and European explorer since July 2014), sometime in 2013 when we bumped into each other on the bus one time on the way to university. It’s insane to think that this dream of ours came to life and has now passed. I think the best word to describe this particular weekend is..
Destination: Paris, France
When: Thurs, 19 March – Mon, 23 March
Where: the centre of the Île-de-France region, on the River Seine
Why: Umm.. it’s Paris. Duh. The expansive capital city of +2mil Parisians and foreigners alike, is constantly b-u-z-z-i-n-g. Wine, food, culture, history, art, music, fashion – this city has it all and arguably, does them all to a world class standard. I could not possibly live in Europe for a year and not go here!
Highlights: Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame Cathedral (particularly by night), The Louvre, Sacré-Cœur Basilica (and Montmartre), Arc de Triomphe, the Red Light district, Pont Alexandre III, River Seine, Shakespeare and Company, Champs-Élysées, Disneyland and Walt Disney Studios (there’s really only so much you can do in 3 and a half days)
I’m definitely, 100% no doubt coming back to Paris. It was so much more than what I was expecting it to be. The sheer size of the city alone was unexpectedly impressive. I arrived on the Thursday night, successfully navigated the metro system by myself and met Leigh at our airbnb apartment. This night in particular, was one to remember. Let’s just say Paris knew how to keep me on my toes.
Guess who nearly got their phone stolen? … Meeeeeee!
Emphasis on the ‘nearly‘ part. Here’s how it went down: After meeting Leigh, I dumped my Country Road bag in the apartment as we were stepping out to meet her sister and boyfriend for crepes. Since it was already late (cerca 9pm) I figured we wouldn’t be doing much else so I thought a bag wouldn’t be necessary. Every day up until this fateful night, I had always placed my phone in the front pocket of my skinny jeans, under my jumper and inside my coat. For some silly reason (perhaps the distraction of finally seeing Leigh after so long) I placed my phone in my coat pocket. Rookie mistake. As I was walking through the ticket gates of the metro, I felt my pocket move. When I looked over my shoulder, there was an oldish man behind me, surely enough, phone in hand. I was already half way through the gates so I had to continue and by the time I turned around I couldn’t see my phone anymore. The only thought in my head was “Can’t lose my phone. Can’t lose my phone. Can’t lose my phone!!!!!”. So I did the only logical thing – I (forcefully) grabbed him, groped his jacket pockets and shouted “WHERE’S MY PHONE? GIVE ME MY PHONE! GIVE ME BACK MY F*CKING PHONE!”. At this point, Leigh had finally caught on and began helping in the search. I refused to let go of him until I got it back. I think he was taken aback and was also startled by all the english being thrown at him that he let go of his bag *cue chorus sung as heavens open up* There it was. My baby. Rapid reflex kicked in and I snatched my phone from his bag, shouted more english words at his face (“SON OF A B*TCH”) and stormed off. Hooraaah! Victory!
So that was that. Brilliant start to my weekend! The rest of the night was magical with strolls along River Seine and views of Notre Dame lit up proudly accompanied by a well-deserved crepe. The next day was Disneyland Park and Walt Disney Studios – don’t judge. It was actually soooo much fun. Original trip plan re: 2013 bus ride, we were supposed to go to Disneyland Paris for my birthday but that clearly didn’t happen. Everything was so magical and disney and pretty and ahhhhh! Our childhood was revisited as we explored the different lands and rode the ‘It’s a small world’ ride (of course). After being knocked around twice by the Indiana Jones ride (which is defs better in LA), lost our stomachs twice on the Tower of Terror, helped Buzz Lightyear fight off Zurg and joined Pinocchio in his quest to be a real boy, we were thoroughly satisfied by our Disney experience. The only downside was the lack of Mickey shaped foods – all I wanted was my Mickey shaped waffle (and chicken nuggets)! Saturday and Sunday were entirely dedicated to visiting all the major attractions that Paris housed. Refer to 85% of places listed in Highlights section above. We saw a lot, we experienced a lot,
we I took A LOT of photos, we ate a lot, and we walked a sh*tload. Pretty sure Leigh and I should get medals for being expert tourists. I thought everything was absolutely stunning – the French are faaaancy and have an eye for detail. We ended our weekend by waiting for the Eiffel Tower to light up and sparkle (which only happens on the hour every hour). My hands turned a lovely shade of purple from the cold but it was worth it. Paris won me. Go there. Till next time, Besos para ti xx