It’s a good thing I’m not a blogger for a living…cause I wouldn’t be getting paid much. So, like Maria von Trapp, let’s start at the very beginning.
We’ll just call this one April.
At the beginning of April, I went to Marseille with NYU. Free trips are the best kind of trips. We were only there for two days, but we saw so much–including the Mediterranean for my first time! We went on a tour of the panier, then ate lunch there. We got reeally good ravioli then gelato! I have no idea what flavor I got because it was in Italian, but it was delicious.
Emily and I signed up to be in a double room, and we were some of the first to get to the hotel. We took our key and went to our room, only to find a living room with a twin bed, two bathrooms, and a bedroom with a queen bed and a twin bed. We took our key back to the front thinking it was some mistake, but the woman at the desk was perplexed why we were complaining. Pretty sweet!
The next day we went on a boat tour of the calanques, ragged mountain-like things along the coast. It was soo pretty, and we got really lucky with the weather. However, with the boat moving so fast it got really cold on the boat, so we all ran for cover on the lower deck (and then I proceeded to take a nap). Afterwards, we headed over to Cassis, a nearby beach. Unfortunately we never got to see the beach though, because the restaurant we went to was so incredibly slow. Usually it wouldn’t have been a big deal, but we were only there for two hours.
The next week started (a much needed) spring break. I went with one of my friends to the cinematheque, because there is a Stanley Kubrick exhibit going on right now and we wanted to see Eyes Wide Shut. Too bad every old person in Paris wanted to do the same thing, and they all thought to reserve seats ahead of time. So we took pictures in the photo booth, and walked across the street for some really good Chinese food.
Then, after making our way somehow to Rue de Rivoli, a couple French boys came up and started talking to us. Great. Apparently, being a girl means you want strangers to talk to you in front of the Louvre. We tried to shake them off, but they followed us a few blocks before we had them convinced we actually had better things to do than talk to them.
On the 12th, my mom came to visit! I immediately acclimated her to the city with breakfast at Angelina, followed by French onion soup in St. Michel. After that, we went home for a nap…after Helen fell asleep on the bus! We did some shopping that night, then went to a cafe for dinner.
The next morning, we left to go to Passy. A Passy, ma chère, pourquoi pas Versailles? Well, I had to print my internship application at school, so I introduced Helen to the NYU in Paris campus. Then, we got a sandwich at my favorite boulangerie near school to take to the Eiffel Tower!
Unfortunately, having other people with me does not aide my navigation skills. Passy isn’t far from the Eiffel Tower at all…just one metro stop. Which wouldn’t have taken long, if I actually knew where to go. We finally just ended up taking the metro to Trocadero so we wouldn’t waste any time.
After being hassled and yelled at in Spanish by every straggler on Trocadero, we started walking towards the tower. Yes, I did not invest in a European straightener. But I am not Spanish!
While we were in line waiting to go up the tower, they closed the top because everyone else and their mom (literally) decided to go up that day. It was ok though, the second floor is still pretty high. After making our way up and down the tower, we went to a cafe off Champ de Mars, and then headed over to Musee Rodin.
The line between French gardens and French museums is very fine. There are sculptures in the parks and courtyards in the museums. Musee Rodin, though, is both: garden with museum. This is genius…I don’t know why no one else thought of it.
After doing some heavy “thinking” (couldn’t resist haha), we went back to my apartment to pack for Nice! Also, I was pretty exhausted. After some quick packing and getting some food together, we headed to Gare d’Austerlitz–conveniently located on the complete opposite side of the city.
Once there, we had dinner at the only restaurant in the train station. It seriously was the most desolate station I have ever been in in Paris. But, now I know that train stations are the places to eat if you want fast service and have a waiter who will remember you exist.
After dinner, we hopped on the train to Nice, the Lunea overnight train. It’s pretty hard to sleep when the man behind you gets grumpy when you put your seat back. Luckily, I had my ipod and several TV episodes from 2008.
We arrived in Nice reeally early in the morning. It was cold. Really cold. We took the bus to our hotel, on the Promenade d’Anglais. I love the Mediterranean, even if it is 50 degrees outside. We spent the majority of that day trying to figure our way around the city, but finally found all the pretty places and Place Massena. We even got to see Emily and Amanda!
After lunch, we walked around the old town with Emily and Amanda and got gelato at Finnochios. Lavender and chocolate is a really good combination, just in case you were wondering. We walked down to the Med, and decided we would just walk back to our hotel. It didn’t seem that far.
Well, it was. We learned why it was so cheap, cause it was probably at least a mile from everything else. We got back to the hotel, got our room, and fell asleep. I was so happy to have a pillow (another thing I decided I wouldn’t waste my money on here)! I woke up pretty fast, and watched CSI Miami in French until Helen woke up.
Then, I became best friends with the concierge. I went to ask him for a map, and we talked for a really long time.
The rest of our adventures will be in bullet point form, because this seems like it will never end.
-went to a college bar with my mom
-walked back from Old Town in the city because we missed the bus (every French city doesn’t run on Parisian schedule?)…started walking because someone was rolling a joint waiting for the night bus
-considered telling all our friends and family we stayed at the Negresco…oh wait! we did! 😉
-got lost a few more times
-went to the flower market, made a new best friend with the soap salesman.
-he told us a really good socca restaurant, so we went there and had the best meal ever
-got back on the train and some crazy old French lady was screaming for probably an hour
BACK IN PARIS:
-went to the Louvre, didn’t get lost
-went to the Montparnasse Tower, some guy creeped on us when we were trying to go see the Tower sparkle
-the top floor was closed, flash doesn’t work in glass boxes
-tried somewhat unsuccessfully to find markets (ironic, I guess)
-took Hel to Le Refuge des Fondues…she loved it and we became best friends with the British people sitting next to us.
-went to Sacre Coeur, got creeped on again surprise
-fell in love with the McDonalds on Rivoli…stayed there for probably an hour, would have never le
ft but we had to go to the Louvre
-went to Musée l’Orangerie, with the waterlilies…my new favorite museum
-tasted chicken potato chips. these are real and reminded me a lot of this
-went to dinner with Hel’s friend from college Mary and her husband, got so much good wine and really good fish
-took Helen back to the airport 🙁
THE END. Check back later for picnics and opera!