Pretty Paris

Tuesday, August 01, 2017
Chicago, Illinois, United States
Our flights to Charlotte and then to Paris went great. The best thing was that the flight to Paris was only about 60% full. Mary and I could sprawl out across our 4 seats, and we actually received a decent night of sleep (for an airplane.) 

We landed at 8:35 am Paris time, deplaned and went through border control. Mary was asking me about this, and what the border patrol people might ask us. I told her not to sweat it. This is France. The last time I was here, the two agents stamping us in looked like frat boys. This time, it was a little more serious, but honestly, I think I have been interrogated more when entering Lambeau Field for a Packers game. 

We gathered our bags and walked a good 10 minutes to the train station. I had forgotten how HUGE Charles de Gaulle (airport) is. I was glad that I did a little research beforehand on where to buy train tickets, as that area is a little confusing. One office is for long distance trains, and the other is for into Paris and for the metro. We stood in line and purchased tickets into Paris, a carnet (10 pack) of metro tickets and round trip tickets to Versailles for tomorrow. Of course, the ticket agent spoke English, so my attempt at writing down (in French) the tickets I needed were not necessary, but I would like to think she was impressed nonetheless. 

We hopped on the B train to Chatelet and then switched to the metro, which took us to Gare de Lyon, one of the major stations in Paris. From here, it's a 3-minute walk to our hotel. Yes, I timed it. We arrived at 10:45 a.m. and were pleasantly surprised our room was ready. I took a shower, because I'm pretty sure at this point I was starting to smell not so pleasant, and it helps wake me up. We grabbed a coffee (for me, water for Mary) and some sandwiches, because the "breakfast" on our American Airlines flight was pretty meager. (I often wonder what foreigners think of our airlines, but that's another blog post). 

Our main goal today was to see a few things, stay busy and stay awake. The best way to fight jet lag is to be outside and in some fresh air. We visited Notre Dame Cathedral and went inside. We took a river cruise on the Seine, and what I loved about this was going underneath all of the cool bridges in Paris. We also saw some breathtaking views of the Tour Eiffel. We walked through the Tuileries Gardens and then had tea time at Angelina. After resting at our hotel, we had dinner at Les Bruns in the neighborhood. The crepes and creme brulee were fantastic. 

Mary is an excellent traveler and goes with the flow. She walks around here like she knows the place. She does great on the metro, and is patient when we need to wait. I asked her what she learned about traveling today, and she said: 1) Traveling light is smart. 2) Parisians don't kick you out of restaurants. 3) They also don't like it when you take food "to go."  All correct. :)

Until tomorrow,
Jamie and Mary


Gina Sturek

I am Mary's friend Lucy's Mom. I love seeing the pics and reading of your adventures! Thank you for sharing!!