A Weekend in Paris

A Weekend in Paris

Paris was definitely an interesting experience. I will admit I had a bit of a culture shock from visiting a country that doesn’t speak English as its first language. First, the trip started by the International Students House, where I boarded a large bus of about 40 people. From there we rode to Dover where we went through customs. Customs wasn’t too bad and I got a second stamp in my passport (this made me feel quite fulfilled). I would love to have my passport filled with stamps someday.

We then boarded a ferry to France. The ferry ride was nice. I sat in front of a large window and watched the sea as we floated by. It was quite a beautiful view. 

We made it to France and started driving.  The ride was the hottest and sweatiest I’ve been on compared to my other travels. You could tell we weren’t in England anymore by the landscape not being as green. They weren’t lying when they said, “The grass is greener on the other side.” At the edge of France we passed remnants of a Nazi base used in World War II. We kept driving and stopped at a convenience store to buy lunch. I hadn’t brushed up on my French (last time I took a French class was 7th grade, and 3 years of Spanish wasn’t going to help here) so it was a weird seeing everything in a foreign language at the store. I’m not going to lie; I totally hate not understanding other languages.  I wish I knew more than just one language fluently. Unfortunately I don’t, but it’s something to aspire to. 

We arrived in Paris and took a panoramic cruise down the river Seine. It was nice to sit on a boat and listen to commentary about the places we were seeing. 

I also saw the Eiffel Tower for the first time, which felt quite fulfilling.

The Eiffel Tower is something you hear about as a child, as it’s illustrated everywhere.  I remember as a kid, I had stationary with Eiffel Towers and French Poodles on it. I expected the Eiffel Tower to be a bit more detailed and elegant in person but it was still impressive nonetheless. It’s very technical/metal looking. I’m happy that I’ve gotten the chance to finally see it.

On day two I took the Paris Metro to Notre Dame. I have to give the French credit on their metro. I LOVE how it’s not yelling at me to “MIND THE GAP.” It was quite refreshing. I also felt like they kept their metro very clean. It wasn’t too hard to figure out it out (I have to give the tour guide props for giving good directions though).  I met up with the group in front of Notre Dame, grabbed a gyro, and jumped on the bus to the Palace of Versailles.

The Palace was gorgeous! So pretty and worth the visit!! I would say the Palace and Mona Lisa were my favorite parts of the trip. I wanted to visit Jim Morrison’s grave as well as the Catacombs but didn’t have enough time. I guess that just leaves Paris open to another trip someday when I’m older.

In the palace, I walked through “The Hall of Mirrors.”

Here’s a picture of me in front of Marie-Antoinette’s bedroom:

Here’s a picture of me in front of the Palace.

I ate dinner both of my nights in Paris at a restaurant named Nicolas. It had pretty good authentic French food. My one comment about Europe and the UK is that they have very strong cheese. I love cheese but I’m not used to that!

We visited the Louvre and I got to see the Mona Lisa!! I was thrilled!

I had just enough time to explore maybe three floors of the Louvre. There’s so much to see! Two hours is not enough to appreciate all of the art and take everything in.

We left Paris and traveled by a very hot bus back to the coast of France to take a ferry back to Dover.

FIN

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