Sunday, May 10, 2009

Lots of Stuff

Write about how cool it is to turn a corner and find an ancient street.

The above sentence was a note to myself to remember that I wanted to write about how totally cool it is to turn a corner and find yourself centuries away from modern life. Just a corner, one corner off a main thoroughfare with all of its hustle and bustle, and you're on a narrow cobblestone street with brick buildings leaning over the road at all angles, an old pub “est. 1684”, and yet another stunning church with wrought iron gates surrounding a lush green courtyard.

OK, I really love writing all this up, but we're on the train to Paris and it just started moving, so I'm signing off to look out the window until it gets dark. I want to drink in every bit of the countryside as we travel through it!

Now I'm typing from our room in Paris. Our room on the 22nd floor of a luxury hotel in Paris. Close your eyes and imagine the view from the 22nd floor! We can see another huge building a few blocks away, but apart from that we can see all the way from where we are on the Left Bank to Montmartre; it looks like a romantic fairy tale castle on a hill lit up from below. The Eldest and I are itching to get out there but our feet can't take anymore until we've rested a bit. We agreed that we would stay in tonight and actually it seems the wisest course of action since we drove by a large police presence and demonstrations on our way here. It didn't seem to bother the locals though; they were out in droves. Apparently this is a big holiday weekend so everyone has taken to the streets.

Sunday Night:
I posted earlier today and now I'm typing on Open Office to cut & paste later. I've found that it can be a little challenging to blog from the road since you never know when you're going to happen upon internet access and then, if you can get internet from your hotel, you're too tired to deal with it after a long day out and about. And oh, what a long day it's been! We took the fantastic bike tour I wrote about earlier then, after hanging out in the tour offices for a while, we walked back to the Eiffel Tower and went up to the top. Yes, it was amazing and beautiful and we had superb views of Paris at night. We didn't linger for long since it was cold and drizzly; our hotel room and bed suddenly held irresistible appeal. The only problem proved to be getting back there! We wandered around trying to find the correct bus stop but it was no where to be found. I knew we needed the bus going in the opposite direction from the morning bus, but there wasn't a stop on the opposite side of the street. We decided to wait at the stop where we were dropped off and asked the bus driver or just take the bus all the way around its route if need be, then we got a lucky break. A couple came up to the bus looking for the same number bus we were waiting for and they happened to mention, in English, that they were trying to get to Montparnasse like us. We chatted and discovered that they were indeed staying at a hotel in the same general area as ours. They said they were going to look for the correct stop down the street. We said goodbye and they went on their way. The Eldest said we should follow them! I hesitated at first then agreed with her so we chased them down and asked if we could tag along on their search. They said it would be OK; HOORAY!!!! They weren't quite sure where they were going but knew how to figure it out a lot better than we did. We stuck with them like glue! We didn't have a ticket for the Metro and they even helped us with that. Thank goodness for the kindness of strangers, and if they read my blog (I gave them my card w/ the URL on it) then a million thank yous!!!

I must say one of the most pleasant things about this trip has been the random conversations we've had with fellow travelers. We also enjoyed chatting with a couple and their son at the bike tour offices. They gave us the scoop on some things that they enjoyed while they were here which we appreciate.

Oh, as much as I want to keep writing, I'm too tired. Good night for now. :)

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