A tourist in Paris – Part 1

Hello everyone!

I know I have been MIA for a while, but since nothing particularly interesting was happening I thought I would wait to update you all when I had something fun to tell you about. This past week I was off work and my good friend Paul, who I met back in Halifax, decided to come and visit me in Paris.  We had made a plan to do 2 and a half days of Paris and then jet to Berlin for 3 days to see his friend Matt and to see the city. It turned out to be a jam packed week that was so much fun I am sad to say it’s over.

On Paul’s first day in Paris, we walked around, ate at a little cafe and went out for dinner with friends at an English pub (an odd choice of restaurant, yes). We waited until the following day to start our whirlwind tour of Paris. When I first arrived, 10 months ago, I spent a lot of time wandering the city alone, which means I now know a lot of places and how to get there on foot, but I avoided the touristy spots like the Eiffel Tower and The Louvre, because it just didn’t seem interesting to go alone. When Paul was here, it was my first chance to go with someone to see all the tourist hot spots and so it felt like a whole new city for me, only I knew how to get around.

We spent part of the day at the Louvre, walked to Notre Dame where we saw point zero – the centre of Paris, and attempted to go to the Catacombs (which sadly were closed). Upon finding out that they were closed, we abandoned our tourist sightseeing efforts for a glass of wine on a heated patio – one of the best things Paris has to offer, in my opinion.

We did so many tourist spots that I can`t even quite remember in what order we did things. We spent a half day at Versaille pretending we owned it, or at least letting Paul `pick out the furniture` for his palace back home.  Check out the throne he chose below.

 

We spent an evening at the Eiffel Tower followed by a visit to Scare Coeur to see the view of Paris by night.

Look how far we are from home!!!

  

 The three days went so fast and we crammed in as much of Paris as was humanely possible, that is if you are drinking wine while tourist-ing.  Paul was pretty excited about how cheap wine and cheese was, somehting I got over a couple of months after moving here, but I was happy to have someone to share all the good parts of Paris with. We were so lucky to have nice weather, with lots of sun and we survived living for 4 nights in my tiny apartment. What a week! I hope Paul visits me every year depending on where I live 🙂

Check out this link to Facebook for the entire album of photos. (You don`t have to have Facebook to see them)

Spec. 

What can Brown do for you?

Our road trip went by so fast that I didn’t even have time to squeeze in another blog post before I arrived home today. Regardless, this doesn’t mean I can’t just tell you about all the awesome things we did now.

Monday was our big day trip to Providence, Rhode Island to visit Fred at Brown University. We left the house at around 10 because we had to meet Fred at noon at her residence. Our evil GPS lady, Minoris tried to get us killed by suggesting that we cross 4 lanes of heavy highway traffic to get off at our exit – but I knew better and ignored her evil directions. We made her redirect us and eventually made it to Fred’s residence.

The campus is really big and beautiful and the residences are intertwined into this lovely neighbourhood of big colourful homes. Fred’s residence is very sixties, made mostly of concrete, a bit like the LSC for those of you who know Dalhousie. We were informed by our lovely guide, that the building has no common rooms because it had to be riot proof. So no living rooms – I guess potlucks are out of the question then!?

Fred had her room all done up with pink curtains and a nice purple rug. It was very Fred and very homey as well, a most impressive feat for the kind of room it was. We went for a quick bite to eat at this little lunch spot not far from campus, where we finally found our first American veggie burgers. Adam and I hadn’t had much luck with this yet so it was kind of exciting. Simon, Fred’s boyfriend joined us as well and he is really very cool, not that I expected anything different!

After lunch Fred had a 1 hour class called Love – so naturally we had to attend. I had trouble focusing on the prof because the class was so comfortable and sunny and new. It was just such a nice intelligent atmosphere, with the exception of the prof’s pronunciation of Montagne, which was more like Montagna as Fred pointed out.

After class, we walked a bit more around the campus and sat on one of the well manicured lawns in the sun and discussed important things like gossip and travel plans… my favourite!

Next, we walked downtown, passing by RISD (Road Island School of Design), also amazing and then shopped for a little while in all the cool funky shops. I really didn’t know what to expect of Providence, but it was a lot bigger than I thought.

We had ice cream and then continued out walk and window shop. Fred is really knowledgeable about the school and city so we picked up a lot of interesting tidbits along the way. We also got to see Fred’s soon to be first apartment just off the main strip, and visit the Brown bookstore!

It was just so exciting. We reluctantly had to end our evening, but we had a little hang out time and a quick sushi dinner before we hopped back in the car and ignored Minoris’ directions all the way back to our bed in the attic.

We of course played a late night game of scrabble and watched a bad movie before sleeping. On Tuesday morning we woke up at a reasonable hour, got ready and headed to downtown Boston to take in the sights and more or less the shopping. We had the most delicious crepes for breakfast at Mr Crepe and I would say be sure to check it out if you are near Davis square in Boston. ( I had the Super Pear – Spiced pears with crumbled blue cheese and arugula… mmmm)

We spent the day wandering up Newberry Street where we saw so many cool stores and people. We had a hand treatment done at Lush and went to the most gigantic Apple store I have ever seen too. We had a big dinner before getting back on the T (subway) and heading home so that we could get on the road to Bangor before we were too tired.

After many goodbyes to baby Noel, Kerry and Marc we set off down the highway to Bangor. We had only one stop to make and that was at a Target for trail mix. We hit up the Target at about 9:30 – leaving 20 minutes later with trail mix, 2 wild print snuggies and energy drinks. It was epic.

We stayed the night at a lovely hotel in Bangor where we frolicked around in our Snuggies – mine leopard and Adam’s, zebra print.

We slept like logs after driving and singing to Aqua too loudly. The next morning, Wednesday morning we awoke, got ready and dashed out the door as we had to be back in Halifax for 6pm because I had my final ESL class. We drove straight all day, stopping only to refuel on Subway for lunch. We arrived back in Halifax only a couple of minutes late and I ended up presenting my big final project to my class very successfully.

I had so much fun traveling with Adam and Boston was just so cool! I would definitely go back any time. You should all go now that I think about it.

Thanks so much for reading about our adventures!

The next couple of weeks may be a bit sparse in terms of posting as I will be prepping for my move to France and also organizing myself in Toronto, but I will do my best to keep you updated anyways.

Love you all

Spec.