Good evening everybody! So, it has come. The final night abroad. Thank you all so much for reading whilst we’ve been away - all the emails have been really positive and I think you’ve all had fun reading. I know I’ve certainly had fun writing these posts, and it saves a lot of explaining to you all over the coming weeks! You were there, with us!
This morning we pulled into Paris on the second of our two sleeper trains. It took a grand 15 hours from Berlin meaning we arrived at 11.15am. It took us almost an hour to get to the hotel across town on the incomprehensible metro system (it’s good, just complex) which meant that our room was ready for check-in! Woohoo, we could drop the rucksacks!
We took our time and found some lunch at a little cafe under the hotel overlooking the Seine then headed out for The Louvre. 8.5 million visitors last year and ranked number 1 in the world for visitorship! Interesting useless fact for your next pub quiz. We obviously went for a look at the Mona Lisa - along with the rest of Paris and it’s cameras it seemed. The picture I’ve included is of the mob in front of the portrait, no one actually looking at the picture - just taking pictures of the picture. You’re separated by about 6-10ft, several barriers and bulletproof glass (plus the other tourists) so you can’t really get anywhere near sadly.
Incidentally The Louvre set a new record in extortion today. The most expensive 500ml bottle of Cola in Europe! (We’ve seen a lot this month for comparison!). €3.30!!! It’s £1.09 in England in a normal shop for comparison. Naturally, we didn’t buy here.
We left the museum through the stunning Pyramid - what an entrance! In front of the Palace (in which the museum is housed) there is a massive garden / park thing. We took a few minutes to rest our feet after trudging round the museum (it’s ENORMOUS and full of more steps than you would believe!). I took a rather lovely shot of the sun streaming through the trees and have included it in todays snaps for you - rather proud of this badger I am.
After a walk up the Champs-Élysées we found ourselves at the Arc de Triomphe. Cat told me a story about some caravanner that got lost here in the 70s and setup camp overnight only to have a rude awakening by the French Police! We sat and watched the CRAZY traffic for near 15 minutes and sadly didn’t witness a single accident - somehow. Having watched for 15 minutes I was still nowhere closer to understanding it’s workings. Cars on the roundabout sometimes gave way to other cars, but only if they were not able to get there before a bus appeared followed by a swarm of scooters beeping their horns because a car had stopped to give way to… you get the picture. CRAZY FRENCH!
For our final evening meal of the trip we headed over the Saint-Michel near Notre Dame and found a nice little cafe that was serving big plates of meat and chips. Alex's fav. We finished off a little Beaujolais (which they insist on cooling?! cold red wine!?) and headed back towards our hotel via the Eifel Tower!
If ever a landmark lived up to it’s reputation, it’s this. The tower is magnificent. A huge base really makes it an imposing structure. I messed about with some long exposures and arty filters on the camera, but the best result is posted above.
So, tomorrow we head back to England on the 6.45pm Eurostar. Before then we have some sleeping and some eating and not much else to do! I’ll probably do another post or two as a summary or something so don’t give up on me quite yet chaps! Thank you so much for reading - Au Revoir!