Twenty years ago, on July 29th, I was most likely finishing with my European holiday. I say that with an ounce of uncertainty, because I cannot remember the exact dates and so forth.
Yet, when I left the Craig History, I was just finishing my whirlwind tour of London. With its weird ways of driving and its historical sites… I forgot to mention that I did also see Big Ben, the huge clock, but I did not see the Queen or even Buckingham Palace, through I think I did, but it was probably just a brick wall.
I’ve already detailed to you how I got from London to Paris, it is a real page-turner, you can read about it here!
I’ve also documented my experiences with handling art at the Louvre. You can read about it here!
But I haven’t dealt with much else… So here we go!
Paris! Oh what a beautiful and vibrant city! My girlfriend and I did many things in this city!
To start off our tour, I need to tell you where we stayed. We had a room at the Woodstock Hostel in, well, Paris. Was it North or South? West or East Paris? I can’t recall, I basically left all the getting around to my girlfriend!
Anyways, the Woodstock was, and still is, a groovy dive with a focus on 1960’s flower power, Beatles and everything retro! It was very cool place!
There is a Volkswagen Beetle on the wall, we had our picture taken on our last day. I have it on my Facebook pictures somewhere.
Anyways, Woodstock had, not sure if it still does or not, a strict rule: Everyone Must be Out of the hostel by a Given time. And you were not permitted back in until a specific time. This was for cleaning. Another rule was that the front door was locked at 12 Midnight, if you were late, you would not be allowed in!
So, everyday, my girlfriend and I roamed the city!
Our first day, we went to Sacré-Cœur Basilica, or the Sacred Heart of Jesus basilica. Which was simply Devine! Then we went to Moulin Rouge area of the city. As I said, the girlfriend was doing the “driving,” so I didn’t really know where we were until later.
I guess I was so in love that I forgot to take note of where we were, or where we were going!
While at Moulin Rouge, I have my first, and last, duck soup! It cost a fortune, came in a stone bowl, and left an unpleasant taste in my mouth. But I did finish the food!
The next day, we went back to the airport because I still was wearing the same shorts (and boxers) for three days! I wanted my luggage! It was still missing, and probably in Heathrow.
We also saw the Arc de Triomphe! While nearly everyone had to use the stairs to walk up the to top, I was asked if I wanted to take the lift, which I did gladly. My girlfriend and I, plus a Lift Guard, rode up to the top in a very small elevator! There was enough room for 4 people!
At the top, I naturally marvelled, and took many pictures, of the chaos of the roundabout below! At least 6 or 8 lanes, with, I think 8 streets joining it. I could google the exact information, but, nah!
The next day, I believe, my luggage finally arrived! So I had a shower and shave and later we went to the Eiffel Tower!
First, we took the subway and got out, walked along a street, the tower was not visible because of the store fronts, we turned a corner and, lo, it was there! At the end of a long park with fountains, and ducks.
Being on Holiday, we did not want to rush to get to the Eiffel Tower, but take our time.
So, at the park, we decided to sit down and have lunch, relaxing a bit. We noticed a few things: People were wading in the fountain (which I eventually did), a flock of Canadian Geese were lounging on the park proper, and it was a very fine day!
After drying off, we walked to the Eiffel Tower and negotiated that we would only go to the first floor. My girlfriend informed me she was afraid of heights… The first floor was large and spacious, we took many pictures, shopped at the two shops, spent maybe two hours on this landmark!
We left in the evening, and found a really cool restaurant right under the bridge that leads to the Eiffel Tower. I think it was called Maximum’s or something Max… it was very good!
The next day, we hit the Louvre.
The next day we went out of the city to hit Disneyland Paris. This was really weird, not because of being in a Disneyland outside of America, but the fact that this place closed at 8 PM everyday! No nightly fireworks, no lighted parade, no nothing! At 8 PM, doors closed, good night!
The most extraordinary thing that happened here was when I miraculously caught my glasses while riding the backward sitting Indiana Jones roller coaster! While doing the loop, my glasses, which I had in a pocket of my shirt, were jarred loose at the top of the loop! But at the bottom of the same loop, they landed in my outstretched hand! How about that!
Oh, I must also tell you about our trip to the Norte Dame Cathedral! This was funny because, now it was my girlfriends turn to be overly love struck!
On this day we made our way to this place, and we arrived. We entered with relative ease and walked down a few halls… I had the feeling that this was not the right place… I pointed it out… we could not be at the Notre Dame cathedral… so we left the Department of Justice (!) and I pointed down the road: It is over there! My girlfriend, abashedly “oops!” If you’ve seen the movie Pink Panther with Steve Martin, the scene where he drives his Smart car into the Department of Justice, that is the same place where we went in!
Anyways, our time in Paris was drawing to a close, my girlfriend dropped me off at the train station, while she went back to the airport. This last parting was sad; hugs, kisses, a few tears, a drop of guano, more hugs, and finally she was gone!
We’ll always have Paris!
I was heading to Berlin, and then to Prague; she was going back to Toronto, to work.
Because my time in Berlin was dull and in Prague, a bit duller, I’ll put them into one blog.
I want to inform you, during my trip, it was not overly crowded as you would expect. I/we did not have long to wait for entrance to things or attractions…
Au revior, Adieau Paris!