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Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Paris, here we come!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

4:30 AM – woke up, stripped my bed, and left the Centre. Sadness…I’m really going to miss this place. It is so amazing here. I think I’ll miss the people most of all. It’ll be fun to run into them on campus and play with them in Provo. We’ve been talking about having tea parties (BYOC – bring your own cup) and London shirt days and such. I love all these people.

6:00 AM – arrived at the Eurostar station to take a train to PARIS!!!!! Woohoo! The train ride wasn’t long, only a couple of hours. I am spending three days in Paris with Whitney and Tiffany from our group. We only got about an hour of sleep last night…yikes…and a couple of hours napping on the train isn’t quite enough – I’m absolutely exhausted. We found our way to our hotel pretty easily. It was weird walking through the Metro and seeing signs in a foreign language, and not hearing English as the main language. And, while looking for the Metro train we needed to take, we ran into a gypsy – a real, live gypsy! We didn’t realize she was a gypsy at the time, but we later learned that she was one. She asked us for money. It was a rather unique exciting experience. We weren’t at our hotel very long, we took off immediately to find Notre Dame. And we did! I saw it! We stopped for lunch at a nice little Panini shop where the guy gave us free crepes and taught us how to count in French. He was so nice! He showed us how to get to Notre Dame and even took the time to walk us to the street corner and point us in the right direction.

Notre Dame is absolutely gorgeous. It’s so much lighter in color than I expected for some reason. Not so dark and gothic as I thought. And the inside it wonderful! I loved it. I couldn’t help but sing “God Help the Outcasts” as I walked through the cathedral.

We went up to the top of it and imitated some gargoyles and got our first real view of the Eiffel Tower! Woo! We kept adding the phrase “in Paris” to everything we said, like – “I just ate a panini…in Paris!” or “I just went to the bathroom…in Paris!” It never got boring either. After Notre Dame we went to find the Louvre, but not before buying another adapter for my laptop chord. So now I have two on the end, because you can’t convert American chords directly to European without spending 30 euros, so I had to convert it to British and then to European. It was rather entertaining.

We found the Louvre after a bit of searching – I really had no idea where it was. But we found it! And it is GINORMOUS! You could spend years in that place. We went through and saw much of the key exhibits, including the Venus de Milo, Winged Victory, Hammurabi’s Code, and, of course, the Mona Lisa. I could hardly believe it – I was able to see all these statues and art pieces that I have only read about. It was so cool! We were so tired though that we ended up collapsing on some chairs and staring at the backside of a naked angel statue. Not on purpose. It was just there and we had no energy to move ha ha.

After exploring the Louvre we headed to the Eiffel Tower to rendezvous (a real French rendezvous!) with two of the guys from our study abroad group but we couldn’t find them. We had gotten there a bit late…a little too carried away in the Louvre I guess. But we found a little Chinese place, ate dinner, and then next door had the best ice cream I think I have ever had. Then we went back to the Eiffel Tower, which was lit up by this point. Every hour, on the hour, the tower twinkles! It’s so pretty and fun! I loved it and took many a picture. We then headed back to our hotel to collapse on our beds and get the first full night’s sleep I have had in over a week. I am exhausted…in Paris!

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