We are in Paris.
Like Eiffel Tower, Louis XIV, Moulin Rouge, Hunchback of Notre Dame Paris.
If there is anything you take away from our blog today, that should be it… We woke up this morning in England. We bought lunch today in London. And now, we are in Paris.
It’s all a little surreal still. Very similar to the feeling we had when we first arrived in London. It’s hard to process that you’re really here in the real place.
This morning we caught an early train out of Oxford. It brought us into Paddington Station in London…yes, that is Paddington, like the bear. We then hopped on the underground, as we got so experienced at doing, and emerged in Kings Cross. We were super early, but that had been the plan. There was no way we were accidentally missing our Eurostar train. We picked up our tickets and then were faced with the dilemma: What do you do to kill time at Kings Cross Station? After the last couple of posts you should be able to guess this…if not you have definitely not read Harry Potter. We obviously hit up Platform 9 3/4! You might think “I’ve read about this before! You girls already went there!” and you would definitely be correct. But when you are crazy HP people like us, you just can’t get enough! Here we are passing through to the magical platform:
And from there we caught our train…ok fine, we admit it was a staged scene and we actually caught our train from Platform 7 at St Pancras (the international station attached to Kings Cross). Still though, there’s something almost magical about crossing through a tunnel that reaches 100m under sea level! We passed right under the English Channel like it was no big deal. You don’t even notice when exactly it is that you’re under the water either because you spend the majority of the journey in a tunnel.
Our arrival into Paris wasn’t very exciting in itself. We went from our train to the metro and popped out just down the street from our hostel. We don’t know why people would ever stress about a subway system. They are so handy and really quite easy to navigate! Our hostel is super nice (as it should be…this is our most expensive hostel yet). It is decorated really neat and has a nice big rooms with huge bathrooms nicer than the ones in most homes! Ours is a 6 bed room. We got a bunk bed for ourselves, which is how we like it…Kristin takes top bunk, Justine gets bottom and we can store all our bags underneath! The hostel has a continental breakfast (which will fit well with our busy days ahead) and free wifi (which we can’t live without!).
After fixing ourselves up from the sweaty messes we were on arrival we set off into the city. You may notice in the upcoming photos that Kristin is in shorts and Justine is in a skirt! For the first time in what feels like forever it was hot out! Really hot out! Even now in the evening as we sit outside we are still in our shorts/skirt & cardigans and not at all cold!
We walked towards the river admiring the refined artisan look of the buildings. Justine also gave Kristin a run down of 500 years of French history. Eventually we reached the Seine and were rewarded with this view:
Right in from of us was the Louvre…yes, The Louvre…so cool. Justine thought it looked exactly like the one her and her dad built! The detailing was even the same 😉 As we continued to walk we came across this cute little church:
Did we fool you? That, in case you don’t recognize it, is Notre Dame. So pretty in person (and in this photo).
This was the point we decided we should eat. We had enough trouble picking places in England, so this was a bit of a challenge for us. In the end we chose a random little place on a packed side street. A lot of places here offer 3 course dinners (appetizer, main & dessert) with different choices based on the price range. They’re usually €10, €15 and €20. It’s probably obvious which choice we went with. We ended up ordering all the same things…
Onion Soup, Beef & Cheese Crepe and Ice Cream…which we didn’t bother to photograph as it was just a scoop of strawberry & a scoop of a yummy vanilla flavor.
Now we were into evening and had only one thing we wanted to do: see the most well known sight in all of France…maybe the world? We followed the river and saw a lot of nice bridges & buildings. We figured out what some of them were. The rest we just enjoyed for their appearance…how shallow! Justine will talk about all of them in a later post. Every once and while we would catch a glimpse of the peak, but tried to look away and wait for the right moment. And then there it was, the Eiffel Tower. We arrived right on the hour for the crazy twinkly light show that sparkles all over it. Magical!
At this point we probably took about a million photos. Seriously. We took at least one every 10 steps as we approached, while we were under it and as we walked away.
It is just so big and so pretty and so mindblowingly there! Totally surreal. Still don’t think it’s real!
This is a direct quote from Justine about this photo “That is going to be my Facebook photo tonight…and possibly for the rest of my life…unless I meet Robert Pattinson.”
And that brings us to now. We are seated on the grass just by the tower, staring up at it as we write. It is so amazing we’re having trouble finding the words. Hopefully all of the pictures help a bit!
But now for a few side notes:
– There are a lot of street vendors around. They are selling anything they can possibly shape as the Eiffel Tower. Justine is showing restraint and not buying anything…yet. Some are also selling wine. Now that is something we could consider buying. Wine under the Eiffel Tower? C’est Parfait!
– There are also lots of men in military dress walking around here with machine guns. Is it always like that at the tower, or just the day before 9-11?
– French men are persistent. They are creepy when they hit on you so you ignore them…but they just keep at it. We learned this at our first grassy location. Now we are in a new, creeper-free spot!
That’s all for tonight! More from Paris in the morning!
Love, Luck & Lights,