So umm. Yeah, the language school thing didn’t really work out. I turned up, but apparently my enrolment got messed up, so I cancelled it. Not a problem, as this means I have more time to wander the streets of Paris (Jesus, that makes me sound like a prostitute). Anyhoo, its Monday morning and I find myself in the 16th. After strolling around absently and munching on a croissant (not a euphemism), I happen upon the Arc de Triomphe. Good Lord it’s huge! The fact that traffic is swirling past this iconic monument is surreal.
After this, I stroll along to the Champs de Elysee. It is beautiful, but very touristy. The designer houses are located here – remember Zoe Saldana’s Givenchy gown she wore to this years Oscars? This is obviously from the same collection.
Oh look, over there is the Eiffel Tower! Bordered by the River Seine.
And here is Flamme de la Liberté, near where Princess Diana popped her clogs – visage triste :( As has been the rhythm of my days, I go home for lunch and just potter around for a bit. In the afternoon, I decide to head over to Jardin des Tuileries. On the way, I pass a few more impressive buildings, and quintessential Parisienne scenes – like an old skool mini Cooper zooming along...
Somehow I find myself at Place Vendôme, site of more couturiers, top shelf bijoux and high class hotels. Chanel is having a soiree – it is Paris fashion week after all. Hmm... looks like there is some sort of gathering outside Hotel Ritz – I ask someone what’s up and she tells me “l'actrice des États-Unis est ici, Gossip Girl”. Apparently Blake, Serena and co are in town shooting an ep. As I am not a fan of the show I leave the fans to their vigil and set off for the gardens.
Sidenote: summer days in Paris are long. These shots were taken around 10pm, but if I had to guess I would think it is 5ish, it looks like dusk.
Wikipedia tells me the Jardins des Tuileries is the garden for Tuileries palace, and in the 19th and 20th century, it was the place where Parisians celebrated, met, promenaded, and relaxed. And it certainly continues this tradition today – statues are dotted around, there are seats around ponds and rows of trees straight from the pages of a fairy tale. There are also carnival rides, making this is haven for children and the young at heart, right in the middle of Paris. I then take a looksy at the Louvre – I didn’t actually go in, just had a look. Yes, I have read the Da Vinci Code, so this is a nice way to realise the words on the page. Will go inside another time. Head home, chomping on a Nutella crepe. Ring my sister to wish her happy birthday and make sure she hasn’t burnt down the house in my absence. She hasn’t. Good girl.
Tuesday 6th of July.
Today was chillaxed, just walked around the local area – found myself at both Gare de l’Est and Gare du Nord, which is fortuitous as they are the stations I need to go to the airport. The churches are big pimpin’ too. Do some shopping– holy crap, you can buy champagne in the supermarkets here! Cripes, Verve for €21? Must get that to celebrate Tina’s arrival on Thursday.
In the afternoon I met up with my French penpal, which is good timing because he is going to be in Brisbane next year to study at Griffith. It will be advantageous for both of us to keep communicating, for the sake of both our competencies in language. We make a date to meet up for Bastille Day next week, at the Eiffel Tower. Avant, I decide to see a movie – Splice. C'était stupide – so full of affectation, and the world’s dumbest storyline. And I’m not just saying that because I was always a bit slow in translating the dialogue (although, it is interesting watching a movie without relying purely on the words, you pick up the gestures and physical elements alot more. Christ, this is turning into an amateur movie review...)
Now I’m annoyed for wasting €7 and 2 hours on that drivel, so head to Café Oz to watch the World Cup semi – Netherlands vs Uruguay. This place is hysterical – do they even sell Fosters in Australia anymore? Find some other Aussies and the token Poms, and we chat about how we mangle the French language and have generally made asses of ourselves whilst en vacance.
Set the footpads homeward, but not before stopping to get a nutella crepe; mustn’t make this a habit...