Not wanting to go on about how much I think other countries are fantastic (I still love you, UK!…) Paris has reminded me once again the quality of life in foreign lands. I didn’t leave the office after a day of speaking and listening to French and after booking into a dubious hotel opposite the Gare de l’est I set out to explore Paris.
Ok, well maybe not explore but I walked down Rue de Strasbourg through the 10e, until I eventually hit the Pompidou centre, and hit tourist Paris. Still full of Americans I hasten to add. I then walked down to the river, to the Louvre, past the Pyramids, through the park (yes it’s predictable), Champs Elysee (where there was a relatively interesting SNCF exhibition), Arc de Triomphe.. blah…blah…
Then I walked back along the back streets, where I noticed a lot of police and then I realised I was walking past the American and British embassies. Not quite as drastic reinforcements as the US Embassy in Mayfair but nevertheless it was protected.
I kept walking past the Opera, and final managed to find somewhere to enjoy my favourite french foods; Snails (still I there shells having to pull the critters out is quality), and Moules-Frites..mmm… I also managed to have a thimble full of coffee for €3.60 which is quite possible the most I’ve ever paid…
So what else in my 36 hours here.
Good Stuff: Clean streets, double decker trains, cheap metro tickets, nice weather (luck?!), the architecture (both old – tube stations, and new – CDG2 Airport), Tete dans les nuages (of course) and Pyramide sur France 2!
Bad things: the traffic at 8am, the fact every bus is always rammed, getting lost, dodgy hotels, Americans being rude to waiters, rough areas, drunkards everywhere, expensive beer/coffee, waiters being rude to Americans….