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Le Week-End à Paris August 9, 2012

Posted by unehistoireamericaine in Travel Log.

Hello again!

Since the days during which we have class are pretty long, we usually have three day weekends. This means that we had last Friday to ourselves. One of my roommates organized a little day trip to Pere-Lachaise Cemetery in the 20th arrondissement-it’s where Jim Morrison, Edith Piaf, and Oscar Wilde are buried, along with countless others. After walking around for a while, we were all in quite a reflective and reverent mood.

On a less reverent note, outside the cemetery, I used the facilities for the first time. I found them delightfully futuristic. Inside the cubicle, there was a female robotic voice who instructed you on how it works, and afterwards the toilets were automatically cleaned. All in all, the experience was much less traumatic than I was expecting.

After that, we headed back to the Marais (our quartier) and Courtney and I did some exploring while the weather was nice.

We found this beautiful garden along the Seine by the Bastille.

We also saw all of these pretty bridges-and incoming rain clouds….

Of course, it started to pour right when we realized we didn’t know where we were-and Courtney didn’t have an umbrella! We saw all the Parisians (smartly) taking shelter under awnings while we blindly marched around in the rain. As soon as our hostel was in sight, the rain stopped. But, I have to say that I love Paris in the rain.

That night, we met the daughter of one of my dad’s work friends. She took us to the Saint-Michel quarter, where a lot of young people like to go on the week-ends. We met two of her friends and went to a club where there were mostly girls having fun and dancing. They also gave you sparklers in your fruit drinks!

Saturday morning,we went to an antiques market in Saint Paul, a little town area one street over from us. There we found an amazing assortment of stuff from all epoques and styles. Also fun (and challenging) was haggling in French-but we persevered. Hayden bought a beautifully detailed ring and I got a pair of sixties clip-on earrings (my ears aren’t pierced) for 4 euro.

Every booth was like this-beautiful old things as far as the eye can see.

My earrings-which I love!

Saturday night we met up with Hayden’s friend who usually lives in Bordeaux but who was visiting Paris for the week-end. His English left something to be desired, so after a little bit of a misunderstanding (his text said “meet in front of de building”  without specifying which building…), we met him at the Gare Montparnasse. We boarded a train to a suburb on the outskirts of Paris, Clamart, where his apartment was located. There was a beautiful view of the Eiffel tower, and we had a very nice night eating cheese, tomatoes, and talking in French on out his balcony. After a while, it was not that difficult at all to understand each other-though he did tease us for our thumbs-ups and frequent usage of the word “cool”.

Here we are at the train station in Clamart. If you look closely, you can see I’m wearing my new earrings!

The Eiffel Tower was on the other side, but I quite like the view of all the little houses.

Sunday morning, we were (understandably) tired, so we did some studying and had escargot for the first time. It was so garlic-y and butter-y and delicious! I liked it so much I want to learn how to cook it-and that’s saying something with my habitual aversion to domestic activities.

Finally, I finished off a great weekend by sitting by the Seine reading my book!

Expect to hear about the AMAZING concert I saw at Sainte Chapelle last night and about Versailles (we’re going there tomorrow) in Thrusday’s installment.

Have a wonderful Wednesday!



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