Last weekend I had a visit from Craig and we had such a great time being tourists in Paris! We managed to pack a lot in- a boat tour on the Seine, a trip to Disneyland, a picnic in Tuileries, a climb up the Arc de Triomphe, a walk around the Latin Quarter, and visits to the Pantheon, Luxembourg Gardens and (my favourite) Place des Vosges!
For some strange reason, Craig claims to have never really had any desire to visit Paris but last weekend changed his mind! On the Friday night we took the metro to Trocadero then walked down towards the Eiffel Tower. If you go down to the Seine next to the Eiffel Tower there is a boat tour company called Vedettes de Paris. They do a guided, one hour, non stop boat tour along the Seine for 14 euros which I definitely recommend. It’s interesting to see the main sights from a different angle and it also helped me to get my bearings a bit! I find it so weird just walking out of a metro station onto an unfamiliar street and having absolutely no idea where to walk to get to wherever I’m trying to find. It can be very disorientating if you’re as directionally challenged as I am! Anyway, by this point, about 6 hours into his visit, Craig decided that really Paris was a lot nicer than he’d anticipated and he’s even suggested several places he quite fancies going to on his next trip in November. La victoire!
I had an amazing weekend with my favourite person and it was brilliant to be able to show Craig where I live and the shops I go to and just bits of my day to day life. I’ve also been reunited with my winter coat, jumpers and boots, which I think I’ll be wearing soon as the temperature has dropped suddenly today and winter might really be on its way after this unseasonably long summer!
The week at uni has been fine, I’m settling into classes but can’t quite believe that it’s week 3…we’ve got mid semester tests coming up in a couple of weeks and I’m not sure I’ve learned enough to be tested on yet, so am anticipating these being interesting to say the least!
We had an interesting lesson that involved comparing onomatopoeia. Fun fact: a French dog says ‘wouaf’ and knocking on a door would make a ‘toc toc toc’ sound!
This weekend has also been really busy- because every weekend can be a holiday when you live in Paris!
I visited Versailles with two other Erasmus students on Saturday. It’s really easy to get to by taking the RER C. It was so busy when we arrived (at around 11h15) so we decided just to explore the grounds since it was a sunny day. They were absolutely beautiful and we definitely made the right decision to enjoy them in the sun! There’s a bit that you need to pay for, but also plenty that is totally free as well. In the end we had a lovely relaxing picnic, walked up round Marie Antoinette’s estate and decided we’d return to see the Palace another day! One of the best things about tourist attractions in Paris is that if you’re an EU citizen under 26 you can get in free to loads of places, including Versailles!
Today we went to Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe at Longchamp.
Incidentally, today was the day that the weather decided to change to winter, so we went from 23 degrees yesterday to 13 degrees today, and of course I was not suitably dressed for this change in temperature! Despite the cold and spending most of the day counting down to our next hot food we had a fab day. I can report that I have not inherited my Granda’s talent for picking the winning horses…we came away with a total of 4 euros…between us! As my lovely Nana and Granda just pointed out, it’s better than losing (every single time)! We actually almost had a winner, but apparently Gleneagles’ jockey had budged another jockey and so he was bumped from first to third, which we didn’t realise until we went to collect our winnings! The odds aren’t really advertised anywhere (we eventually found the screens which showed the odds for the next race) so we just picked by names and colours, which may have been something to do with it! It was still great fun though- especially the five minutes where we thought we’d picked the winning horse!