Monday, May 31, 2010

Paris Day 7

Today Mom, Dad, and Elise abandoned us. It was tragic. No, not really, we knew they were leaving without us. We packed up and finished off the cheese in some eggs in the morning, then went to the train station. There, we separated, Julia and I to the Oops! Youth Hostel and everyone else to the airport.

We found the Youth Hostel pretty easily, but we couldn't check in yet. They did let us leave our suitcases there, though, so we left with only our backpacks and purses. We took the Metro to the Pompidou. It's a very cool museum. The escalators are on the outside in big see-through plastic tubes, so you can look out over Paris as you go up. Julia's camera broke on the way up. We're looking into fixing it, but it's possible that this is the end of Paris photos. I guess I'll just have to keep up my thousand words, huh?

We started at the top floor. There were two galleries we couldn't visit because they cost extra money we didn't feel like paying, but there was also a restaurant we couldn't afford. More important than the restaurant was the restaurant's host, our very own Laura Jude. We said hello and chatted for a bit, then agreed to meet up another day.

We went down to the Museum proper. The art in it was very cool and modern, and occasionally creepy. There were a lot of naked women who seemed rather uncomfortable, like the one on video using a hula hoop of barbed wire, or the one holding a headless chicken as it wriggled. Our favorite parts were the fractal images, a giant, green plexiglass oval with the "sortie" symbol, a pile of rubble with a hole in the ceiling that suggested parts had fallen out, and then there was our favorite exhibit.

It was called "Night During the Day" or something, and when we went in the screen was black. It was all dark except for a bit of light illuminating the seats, and the faint glow of the black screen. There were bird noises all around. We sat down to look at it and see if anything would happen other than the screen being blank. It seemed like the screen was moving away from us, but we weren't sure if it was just our imagination or not. We sat there for a long time, staring at the blank screen and thinking about what it was. Then a bunch of loud people came in and we left. On the wall we saw something about a film schedule and realized that maybe we hadn't been actually looking at a work of art, it was... just a blank screen. I'm pretty sure that's not true, but the fact remains that the exhibit we liked best, that we thought about most, was a freaking blank screen. I find it hilarious.

Then it was lunch place. We stopped at a little crepe and sandwich stand. I got a sandwich, Julia got a crepe. The server was so creepy. He kept asking us how long we were in Paris, and when we said only a few days, he went, "Oh, that is not enough time for us to date, how will I make you love me?" It was very sketchy. We decided to take our food elsewhere to actually eat it. He also spent forever making Julia's crepe, even after he finished cooking another, similar crepe he'd started at the same time. Still, we both loved our food. I need to have more savory crepes in my life.

We walked around for a little bit searching for either a movie theater or a place for Julia to get a cute little notebook. We found neither and decided to head back to the Youth Hostel neighborhood. We wanted to watch Iron Man or Robin Hood, but neither was showing at a good time. So we kept walking. We couldn't find ice cream, which was too bad because I really wanted some. We did find a nice patisserie where we bought a mini croissant and a mini pain au chocolat.

When four o'clock struck, we went back to the Hostel for check-in. The stairway and downstairs are nice enough, but the room is not very nice. I suppose it is what it is. Cheap student housing. Still, I plan to sleep in my clothes and not use the blanket. It hits my texture squick hard.

We hung out in our room a while, then went to see Robin Hood. They only had Iron Man dubbed, and that's no good. Robin Hood had subtitles, so the only problem was when people spoke French and the normal, English subtitles they had were gone. Luckily, I know enough French that I could follow along, and Julia had already seen it. Good movie, though I could only enjoy it the same way I enjoy TV shows like Merlin and Smallville. Fun, good story, pay no attention to the legendary inaccuracies behind the curtain. But I did like it.

It ended around nine o'clock, or in other words, dinner time. There was a cute pizza store a few blocks down, so we went in. The waiters here were sort of creepy too. They kept making French jokes I barely understood. The pizza was very good, though. Julia had delicious chocolate cake for desert, and I had decent chocolate mousse. I liked hers better. They brought us free drinks with the checks and tucked a sparkly stick thing into Julia's hair. Like I said, they were creepy. The drinks were good, though. They looked like tequila sunrises, but they had no alcohol in them. I guess that's the mixed blessing of being young, attractive American girls in Paris. Creepy waiters flirt with you, but they also bring you free drinks.

Then we went back to the hostel and rented towels. There were two Argentinian men in the room who are staying in the bunk across from ours. They're backpacking across Europe, apparently. One is very tall and plays basketball. The other doesn't want to get addicted to computers. We chatted for a while, then they left for a club. Which brings us to now.

And the new Scott Pilgrim trailer looks awesome. I cannot wait for that movie.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Photos and Books

Some things I should mention before I forget.

Julia's got pictures up here. You need to be friends with her on Facebook to view them.

Also, the book I've been reading is Fool Moon by Jim Butcher. It's Book 2 in the Dresden Files. It's about a wizard named Harry Dresden who works in Chicago. It's part fantasy, part noir, and I like it a lot.

Paris Day 6

Today's entry's gonna be short due to my head feeling like I ate my wife when she was pregnant and now our full-grown daughter is inside my head in full battle armor clambering to get out.

We had delicious croissants for breakfast. Then we rode the Metro to L'Arc de Triomphe. The statues were undergoing maintenance, but they had pictures of what they were supposed to look like over the real ones. We stood underneath and looked around for a while before going up. Yay for museum passes that get us places free! The stairs were long and winding and took forever to get up. At the first level, we saw a bunch of random statues and exhibits, plus a screen that showed the view from above of all the tourists down below. We went up to the level with the gift shop and all sorts of other exhibity things. Then we went up to the top where we could see the city. Great view. I saw a bunch of places we've been. Then we went down again. I lost my family when I went to the bathroom, but I found them at the bottom. Then I went to the center and made faces and waved at the camera. I cared not that I looked like an idiot, I showed those spying bastards that I know they're watching!

Then we walked down the Champs-Élysée. I finally got a watch. We quit about half way through and got lunch. It was delicious. We caught the Metro to the Left Bank and wandered around a little before heading to our relatives' houses. I didn't know about these relatives until this trip, but they're pretty cool people. Albert has a huge collection of African masks that were on the walls. There were a lot of other people there of ages varying from 15 to I-didn't-ask-but-old. Some of us could only speak French, others only English. Then there was a group (myself included) that could speak a bit of one and were fluent in the other. Still, it made conversation interesting and multi-lingual. I did manage to explain what NaNoWriMo is in French, though. That was cool. There was a lot of food. Albert kept bringing out different fruits and pastries. It was pretty nice. It was also four hours of socialization. It may be the origin of said horrible headache, though I had none of the champagne.

Then we went to have a pizza/lasagna dinner at a place that wasn't terrible, but wasn't amazing. I enjoyed it, though. I left by metro because my head hurt and I wanted to get home, and the rest of the family followed more slowly.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Paris Day 5

We had a late start today. Lots of sleeping in and that kind of thing. It was nice. We had a wonderful, fresh from the oven baguette and warm milk for breakfast. Then we straggled out of the apartment and to the metro. I started reading my book. That proved to be a mistake. Thanks to my family knowing how I get when I'm absorbed in a book, I did not end up in Lyon or something, but it was a very near thing. We went to Montmartre and came out near the Moulin Rouge. It was very cool. There were topless women in the pictures, but none of them had snakes biting their nipples... that we noticed. Snake-biting-nipple count remains at two.

We started ambling up towards Sacre Cœur through the narrow streets. They were paved with stones and very beautiful. There was a cupcake shop! Cupcakerie? I don't know. I sort of wandered away while Elise was looking at shoes and my dad was doing... something because remember what I said about my book? I really wanted to finish my chapter. As would soon become a theme in my day, I almost lost the rest of my family, but didn't.

We started walking again, and dad claims he saw Van Gogh's house, but I'm not certain he's telling the truth. It might be a different house with a plaque we couldn't read in the photograph. Then we kept walking.

It started to rain, and we took refuge in a food place. The waiter was very mean, cutting me off when I started to ask for an omelette with a sharp, "No omelettes!" So we left. Maybe their food would have been good, but it wasn't worth it.

We crossed the street to a square surrounded with art. There were tented food place in the middle with much nicer waiters. The food was mediocre. My burger was pretty good, though.

We didn't go far after we paid the bill. Our main reason for visiting Montmartre was to get portraits done, and this is where the portrait artists congregated. The problem was picking one. Everyone felt the need to accost us, offering us "special prices" just for us, apparently lower than their regular prices. It was difficult to say no, but really, not too difficult. We found someone to paint Elise, Julia, and me. In that order. That meant I got to wander around being accosted by other painters for a while. I did see one artist who did more interesting portraits. He had a minimalist, water color and marker type style. It was different. And beautiful. I got him to do one of me. It's awesome.

While I was posing, apparently there was a naked woman painting herself blue in the street, but I did not see it, only heard about it from Dad and Elise.

I finished right as the family artist finished drawing Julia. Time for me to sit still staring at an artist for another decade! Elise and Dad had caricatures done while they were waiting. Reportedly, Elise's is great and Dad's less so. Julia had a portrait done by an artist who made a beautiful picture, but it wasn't of Julia. Then the parents decided to get another portrait of the two of them by the artist who drew the three of us. I went to a cafe for hot chocolate, crepes, and reading. I really like my book. The waiter was really nice and we talked about my studies. Then I got cold.

You have to understand, I was wearing a dress. It's a very cute dress, purple and flowery with a skirt that goes down to a bit above my knees. It's wonderful in the summer, less so when it's windy, cold and rainy and I have no sweatshirt. I tried calling the family but couldn't find them. I walked through the church, hoping they were there and also enjoying the lack of it being freezing in there. No family, though. After walking around a little more, I located them where I'd left them. I hung out with them a little, then walked away on a futile quest for an affordable yet cute sweatshirt that didn't say "I <3 Paris" or anything. (Seriously, it could at least be J'<3 Paris. I mean, come on.) Everything was crazy expensive. I finally made a successful call and told the parents I was going home. One metro ride later, I wandered up to our warm apartment and curled up with some Buffy.

Meanwhile, every tourist baiter in the city targeted the rest of my family. Some French-Africans who constantly said "Jumbo Jumbo Hakuna Matata" made them buy friendship bracelets. They went to the church too. That's all I really know about their time without me.

We went to a great place on the corner for diner. Then we went back to the apartment to a movie for them and more Buffy for me. I'd already seen the movie.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Paris Day 4

Today was Versailles Day! First we ate breakfast at a cute little boulangerie patisserie. Delicious croissants for all! Plus, I had some fantastic hot chocolate. They really do chocolate well here.

Then we headed down to the RER (after some arguments about how to pronounce R-E-R and for the record, I was right), and went to Versailles. Apparently Mom read some facts at my sisters and dad about the palace, but I don't know what since at the time I was asleep.

The view walking up to the palace was breathtaking. There's so much gold! And the sun was behind us so it sparkled. The gate was entirely gold and simply fantastic.

Less fantastic were the lines. Even with our museum passes we had to wait for a very long time. And once we were in there was a line for the bathroom. I decided to hold it. That was a horrible, horrible mistake.

I quickly grew sick of the crowds. We had originally planned to get there earlier, and maybe it would have helped. But as it was, the place was so packed it was hard to get a good look at anything. And most of the palace was cordoned off. Sure, some of it probably needs restoration or whatever, but some of it, like the chapel, seemed to be cordoned off just to control traffic. It bothered me. I hate being told where to go.

The rooms and paintings were pretty, but the crush of people was so unpleasant that I had trouble enjoying it. All right, I kind of hated it. I did find things to admire, like the beautiful architecture and some styles of paintings I recognized from Roman studies. The art itself wasn't Roman, but the style was similar enough for me to recognize it. I skipped out before the Dauphin's rooms. The completionist in me wanted to go on, but my bladder said screw that. Plus, I was not enjoying myself. I left to find the bathroom.

There was a very, very long line. No problem, there'd be other toilettes. No such luck. Well, some such luck. But the line for that one was long too. Reluctantly, I got in line. Luckily, I had Harry Dresden to keep me company.

A few chapters in, my parents found me. At this point I was very cranky, but my mother claimed to have a better, cleaner, less line-filled bathroom. We moved. There was still a line. I read more. I peed. That made it lunch time.

I managed to snag the last tomato/basil/mozzarella sandwich, which was great for me, less good for the rest of everyone. Still, it was delicious, though we later saw a dozen other places that would have been better.

After lunch, it was time to look at the gardens. The first side was very pretty, if not as exciting as we hoped. Then we turned the corner.

They stretched out as far as we could see. Further, possibly. These gorgeous hedge mazes and lakes and statues poking out around the bushes. We had to look closer.

We wandered through the hedges, turning at random and enjoying the pretty statues and topiary and down to the big lake in the middle. We sat down and admired the ducks and the terrifyingly huge fish. FISH SHOULD NOT GET THAT LARGE, OKAY? IT ISN'T RIGHT. I lay down and started reading because I love reading outside in the grass. I should really do it more often. Then my parents and sisters decided to go check out the boat-rentage deal. It turned out they could rent a boat, but only four people were allowed. Me being the martyr I am, I volunteered to sit it out. I read a little, but mostly ended up taking a nap in the sun. This was very fun and good, except now I have a very mild sunburn on my cheeks. Oh well. I regret nothing.

Then it was time to head on home. We stepped into another hedgemaze, managed to get lost between paths, had an exciting time with a bathroom sans toilet paper, and saw another statue of a woman with a snake biting her nipple. Now we know it's Cleopatra. I don't remember the snake biting her nipple. I think people made that part of the story up.

We eventually found ourselves again and boarded the RER. Our stop was right by the Eiffel Tower. I shun touristy things when I can (see: my attitude towards Versailles), and I've been up the Eiffel Tower on both previous trips, so I was more than willing to skip the lines and hassle of going up. My sisters and parents did want to go, though. But first we stopped for tea and crepes. The crepes were very mediocre. They also gave us croissants we thought were free but they made us pay for. Which sucked because they were crappy croissants and we didn't order them.

I split off after that. From what I heard, my dad and Elise climbed the tower while Julia and my mom watched skateboarders trying to jump off the tower. There's some record they're trying to break. I don't know, I was busy losing my way.

Which I did, of course. Strange city? No map? Limited sense of direction? I got lost. Luckily, I knew my way from the apartment to my metro station. After crossing the bridge accidentally, finding a 50¢ piece, looking at a map on the side of a metro station, and recrossing, I eventually oriented myself and reached the apartment. I had my chocolate truffle from the french store to celebrate. It was utterly divine. I'm having a taste flashback now. Oh, man, was it good.

Then the rest of the family came home with bread, cheese, and wine. We ate it. Unsurprisingly, it too was delicious. Some of the best brie, goat cheese, and other cheese that certainly is called something I've ever had. Good wine, too. I was sad when we finished it.

None of us were ready for dinner, so I retreated to my room for Buffy time while the parents and sisters finished the movie they'd started when I was writing my essay. I'd seen it before and had no interest. They enjoyed it, though. And I enjoyed Buffy.

We went across the street for dinner at an Italian place. I had a wonderful pasta dish with tomatoes, almonds, and salad all mixed in. It was a little spicy, but I loved it.

The we went home. They watched the movie's sequel and I, of course, watched more Buffy. Elise watched the end of the episode where Xander falls for the praying mantis woman before she went to bed. I read in the room with her for a while when my Dad stole the computer. It was nice.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Paris Day 3

Today we slept in! It was beautiful. We left pretty late in the day to go to the Louvre. Our train first we stopped to look at the Arc de Triomphe from the Obelisk because that was where our train stopped. It was a pretty neat view, though it would have been nice if there was less fog and we could actually see it. Then we went to the Musée de l'Orangerie to look at the gorgeous Monet paintings. They were huge, taking up the entire wall each, and the colors were amazing! We spent a while there, then went outside to cross the Tuileries Garden. It was very wet, though the flowers were pretty. Eventually it started raining so hard that we took refuge in a cafe. I had hot chocolate and an egg and tomato salad. It was amazing, especially the hot chocolate.

After we paid, it was finally Louvre time! Now, you might not know, but I just finished a course on Roman architecture. That meant I got to blabber at my parents and sisters about how l'Arc de Triomphe is not really a Triumphal Arch in the Roman sense because it doesn't have the proper amount of arches. And point out phalanxes and winged victories and basically be an enormous geek about it all. There's a reason my mother enjoys going to art museums with me. I know stuff. We also got a great view of the Obelisk and l'Arc de Triomphe superimposed on each other like something phallic piercing something yonic. It was wonderful and I snickered a lot.

Speaking of wonderful, the pyramids and the whole entrance to the Louvre are very pretty. There was the coolest elevator, though we didn't take it. It was a round platform that rose and sank into the ground. The stairs spiraled down around it. It is pretty much the coolest elevator I've ever seen.

We had a bit of trouble getting in because although students can get in for free, that only applies to students from Europe. Julia and I needed to buy passes, but now we can go anywhere for free. Elise is under eighteen and gets in free anyway. Finally, we made it.

Our first stop was the ancient Roman art section. Remember what I said about me and Roman art and architecture and knowing stuff? I was in full swing here, answering questions, telling stories, explaining who people were and why they were important... it was awesome. We took some great pictures. One of my favorites was the one of me, Julia, and Elise in the same position of the Three Graces.

We also saw a bunch of statues of Emperors, many of which I recognized from my studies. Augustus was pretty cool, for instance. We saw the Venus de Milo, which I'd missed the last time I went, and she was as beautiful as expected. There was a great Athena statue as well. I appreciated that one a lot. Athena's one of my favorite goddesses. There was also a gorgeous Artemis, but it was hard to photograph her since crowds kept gathering.

I need to pause a moment to mention how amazing the ceilings were. They were beautiful colors, often guilded, always with paintings all around. They were breathtaking, especially in the Greek section.

Then, it was upstairs past the Winged Victory and over to the Renaissance stuff. Yes, we saw the Mona Lisa. It's a nice painting.

Dad and I broke off from the other family members to keep looking at the Renaissance stuff. I wanted more Leonardo da Vinci. No luck. But we did see a nice picture of a topless woman with a snake biting her nipple! We both thought that one was funny.

We wandered back to try and find the siblings and mother, but instead we found more amazing ceilings and some large pictures of a very short emperor. Napoleon, I mean. The paintings were gorgeous, though. After a while, we headed back to the front. Not a moment too soon; I felt like my feet were going to fall off.

We had some chocolate and water, then wandered off to find the Metro station. At this point I really had to go to the bathroom. We found a very posh looking place where they made us pay a euro to pee. I thought we should have splurged and gone for the 1.5€ toilet "with grand comfort." They also sold some of the most colorful toilet paper I've ever seen.

We went to le Merais after that. We had a dinner date with my former exchange student Laura, but we were early. We sat in a cafe drinking warm milk with honey and other tasties for a while, then started wandering towards the restaurant. We passed a gallery with the coolest art. There were these giant, colorful circles filled with sand that spun on the wall. Julia and Elise were mesmerized. I was more taken by the piece with the grid of wires that seemed to move in dizzying ways every time we moved our heads. We chatted with the woman for a long time before we started off again.

We stopped for a while so that Dad could watch the French Open in a shoe store while Mom and the sisters looked at jewelry. I was my usual exciting self and... sat outside and read. But to be fair, it's a really good book.

They finished and we started walking through the neighborhood. We'd somehow ended up in the Jewish corner of town, so we got to admire all the challah and falafel. We went into another jewelry store, and this time I saw a necklace I really liked. It had two lightning bolts coming off a pretty chain. I tried it on, and it turns out I didn't like it 80€ worth. It looked better off me, so not worth the price.

We were early for our meeting, so we went across the street to the Picasso museum. It was closed, but there was a playground out front with all sorts of funky climbing walls and spinny discs on which to play. Elise, Mom, and I played around on it for a while. Then we went to the restaurant.

Everything was in French. I know you're all shocked that there were people speaking French in Paris, but mostly as soon as we show up anywhere everyone immediately switches to English. Luckily, Laura showed up pretty quickly to translate. I had a fish type dish, though I liked Laura's veal better. For desert, I shared an apple tart with Julia. It was amazing.

Afterwards, we walked through the city with Laura to get to the Metro station. It was closed for some reason, so we ended up taking a cab. The Eiffel Tower looked beautiful as we drove by it all lit up for the night.

Interlude: How to Comment

It has come to my attention that certain visitors to this blog are having difficulty with the comment system. By come to my attention, I mean they keep emailing me. So here's a quick tutorial!

If you're reading this from the main page, at the bottom of each entry there are a bunch of links. One of them reads "__ comments" with a number in the blank. If you click on it, a new window will pop up with all the comments left so far and a box where you can type your own comment. There are several options of how you can post. If you have a google account, you can use that. Or you can put your name and a URL, or your name and no URL. You can comment anonymously (though then I won't know who you are). Ignore the OpenID stuff unless you already know what it is.

If you're on an individual entry's page, it's even easier. There's a link on the bottom that says "Post a Comment." Click it. Follow the same process outlined above.

That make everything clearer?

Then I am off to look at pretty French things!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Paris Day 2

Today started out horribly early. By which I mean 9 AMish. That's horribly early. We have so many really steep stairs to get from the ground to our fifth floor apartment, so my legs ached too. Great start, right? Well, we had pain au chocolat (chocolate croissants) for breakfast, so it was actually pretty good. Then we left for Notre Dame.

We had fun arguing over what train route was the fastest, but we ended up getting to Île de la Cité without too much trouble. Then we wandered around for a while because it's apparently pretty difficult to locate the big honking church. But we found it, and it was beautiful. We wandered up to the front taking photographs as we went. I, of course, complained because I hate photographs and touristy things, but I posed for a few of them, took a few more. Then we went in.

I've been to Notre Dame before. I'm pretty sure I didn't go on my second France trip, but the first time, with the Chicago Grandparents, then I did go. But that was seventh grade. I'm much older now, and I've taken a course on Roman architecture. Notre Dame was not built during Roman times, but I did learn a bit about churches towards the end, so I could spot all sorts of Roman architectural bits. Like the barrel arches. There are some very nice barrel arches. The windows and paintings were simply gorgeous. Dad saw a baby on a stick or something that he and the sisters were laughing over. "Shishkababy," they called it. I myself did not see it.

Dad, Julia, and I all visited the treasury together to look at all the relics and clothes and shiny golden cups and stuff the church keeps. There was a very sparkly diamond encrusted something that was actually a copy of the real thing. There were also two human bones. I think they belonged to saints, but I didn't ask. It was all together very cool.

My favorite statue was the one of Saint Jeanne D'Arc, or Joan of Arc for those of you who prefer English. I've always loved Joan of Arc, and hearing that this church is where they decided she was a martyr, not a heretic, was very cool. I was feeling pretty spiritual thanks to all the music and stained glass and general beauty of the place, so I paid two euros for a candle, lit it, and put it near her statue with all the other candles. I figured if I was going to honor a saint, it might as well be the awesome warrior woman one.

Then it was lunch time! The original plan was to go to the Samaritaine (a large department store) and eat on the top floor overlooking the city, but that plan broke when the Samaritaine suffered from a bad case of being closed. So we kept walking in search of somewhere else.

The place we ended up eating, Chez Alexandre, was not great. Wasn't bad, but it wasn't really fantastic. They took a while seating us, and our waiter kept flirting with Julia in a slightly creepy way. He took a picture of all of us, then took a few more just of her, though we didn't know it till we got the camera back. One of me and her which was pretty cute, though. Julia threatened to give him mono... but just to us, not to the waiter himself.

Then it was time to wander around Paris for souvenirs and fun. We stopped at an amazing chocolate store to get truffles. I haven't eaten mine yet, but I promise a full report when I do! Then we went to a store called Collettes that was supposed to be very trendy and cute. It was pretty cute, but it was also très chere. I thought about getting a watch because I really need one, but I ended up deciding to wait for one that's cheaper or that I love. There was a water bar in the basement. I'm still not exactly sure what a water bar is, but there were a ton of different types of water on the menu. One was 50€. We didn't purchase that one. I actually had mango juice instead of water. It was delicious.

I split off from the group and headed home on the metro alone. I managed not to get horribly lost! It was fun. I also purchased anti-itch creme and chapstick in French. It was exciting. Then I went home and fell asleep for a while. The parents and sisters rejoined me, and we watched Hunchback of Notre Dame. The Disney version. It bothered me in how it was different from the original. I've seen it before, but I'm more educated now. I should actually read the original so that I can actually defend this annoyance. Also, the PC term for gypsies? Rom. Not gypsies. This is one of those things I pick up. But the architecture was cool, and I recognized things in the movie from Notre Dame. As far as I could tell, they didn't make too many horrible errors there.

Then it was dinner time! We went to another cafe. I had an omelette. It was delicious. Then we had melty chocolate cake thingy, you know, the kind with the molten center. It was amazing. Then followed home time. Tomorrow: Sacré-Cœur and the Louvre!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Paris Day 1

The flight was fairly uneventful for me. First, I finished Essay #1. Then, I watched the only episode of Buffy I haven't seen. For those curious, it was "Enemies," in Season 3. I accidentally skipped it when I stopped watching for a while and started up again and didn't bother going back because that was before I actually liked Angel and man did I want Season 3 to be over so I could get back to having Spike around. I also slept a lot. My Dad read a book about raising children. My mom and sister sat next to some US Marshals. My mom found out because the one next to her refused to move, which scared her until he showed her his badge. It was all very exciting. Also, the bathrooms in the airport in Paris had really pretty murals.

We shared a cab with some woman for reasons I don't entirely understand, but I think have to do with her being in a similar area and getting to the man who had been sent by the people who own our apartment to pick us up before we did. She was very nice, though. From South Africa. There was a lot of traffic. We got to our apartment, but the former occupants hadn't ditched yet. We left our suitcases and wandered off to find a cafe for breakfast. There were croissants and delicious hot chocolate, plus a cheese omelette and Elise got a long piece of bread with butter and jam. We had various fruit juices as well. Mine was grapefruit!

We still had time to kill, so we wandered down the street and looked at bookstores and fruit stands. There were some pricey but delicious looking cherries. Also, I learned how to say vampire in French! "Vampire." I believe it's pronounced "Vam-peer."

Then we wandered back to the hotel for internet/nap time. It was good. We had a bit more food and the parents left with Elise to visit the Rodin museum while Julia stayed home and slept and I worked on Essay #2. After that, it was dinner time. I liked the fish and had a delicious apple type desert. Dad got cheese. It was amazing.

And now it's time for more Essay #2 because if I don't finish it today, it will never be finished, followed by bed. See you tomorrow!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Pre-Flight Bloggage

I'm heading to Paris! I'm bringing my mother, father, and sisters with me! Not much to say so far. We got through security, no trouble, and we're waiting for our flight. I'm planning on doing work, sleeping, and hopefully reading on the flight. We'll see.

Anyway, wanted to tell everyone that this is the space to watch for future updates. Well, this blog in general. I have an RSS feed, did you know? Or you can just check back daily. I'll be updating to tell what we've been doing every day. So keep an eye out.