Paris, je t’aime

James worked his magic on some of our Paris pictures, so I thought I’d share them. And also a bit about our trip.

We took the Eurostar from London to Paris (fantastic, very comfortable) and arrived quite early. James kept talking about how he wasn’t sure we’d be able to get into our apartment, which I couldn’t understand because he told me they sent him the key.

Looking back I can’t believe how well he fooled me.

We took the Metro to where our “apartment” was supposed to be and James even told me the street number. I was sizing up how the buildings looked to gauge how this apartment would be, even said “hey look a Marriott”, and kept trying to figure out which building was ours. It wasn’t until the numbers started to get close to the one he told me that I realized we were staying at the Marriott! What a trickster! The hotel was so so lovely. I can’t thank his parents enough for letting us use their reward points. It really was a complete change from the night before. The only bad part was at this point, I was really getting sick.

That day we wandered through the Montparnasse cemetery, ate crepes, drank hot chocolate, and really just took in a rainy Paris day. I miss James and Paris. Maybe Henry a little bit.

I never anticpated Paris being so super crazy around New Years, but it definitely was. We tried going to the Louvre the next morning and it was insane. So we walked through the Jardin des Tuileries instead. One of my favorites!

We also tried to go in Paris’ massive department store, Galleries Lafayette, what a nightmare! People everywhere and pushing, I almost saw a fight in the bathroom.

A couple nights a week the Louvre is open late (and its cheaper!), so we went back in the evening and found a much lighter crowd.

The next day we went to the Centre Pompidou (Beaubourg to the French). James and I both were looking for things we’d seen before and neither of us found them. Ah well, it was interesting all the same. I think I prefer the Tate Modern though. We tried to look around at the shops a bit afterwards, but it was too cold for any promenading. We did share a wonderful banana nutella crepe though, yum!

Plus, it was New Years Eve! We went back to the hotel to get something to eat and get bundled before staking out our spot at the Eiffel Tower. We left early, maybe a little too early. I was really expecting a Times Square sort of crowd, but even a half hour before midnight it wasn’t that bad. We, of course, brought our champagne with us and even sprung for some of the fancy plastic flutes.

It was definitely my best New Years, but really because I was in Paris with James. The “light show” on the Eiffel Tower left something to be desired (the journalist on BBC actually called it disappointing) and no fireworks. What is this place?!?!

The Metro was free that night, but it was so crowded we couldn’t even get down the stairs to it. We then started our almost 2 hour walk back to the hotel. Sounds horrible, but James made me laugh so hard it seemed like 20 mins.

The next day we braved Montmartre and the mass of people. We have both already be inside a few times, but I just love the area with all the winding streets.

view from Sacre Coeur

That evening we decided to go to the Arc de Triomphe and take a walk down the Champs Elysees. It was so beautiful! They still had all the Christmas lights up and it was a lovely night. We also walked across the Pont Alexandre III and watched the Eiffel Tower sparkle.

The next day was our last full day in Paris, and the night we got engaged!! I’ve already blogged about this, but I’ll post it again just for fun. 🙂

That day we had a really great walking tour in the Marais area of Paris and then went up to the Marche aux Puces. We wandered through the stalls (and found this really great stuffed beaver/opossum/animal with a top hat, lantern, and grim reaper type axe…bummer that the place was close and there would be no way to get it back to the U.S.) but after like an hour we were freezing and ready for a nap in our lovely hotel room. More about that trick later. For dinner we decided to try to find this place I saw on TripAdvisor. We hadn’t been very lucky finding things and this one wasn’t any better. We actually did find it, but it was of course closed. Just as well though because we found a place a couple blocks away called Le Mesturet with amazing food and a lovely atmosphere.

After dinner James wanted to go for a walk so we headed back to the Louvre and took some really fun pics. I was surprised that he wanted to keep walking since it was so cold and the Metro was about to close, but we decided to walk on from there. He was in search of a pedestrian only bridge, but the one we found wasn’t very fun, so we walked to Place de la Concorde to look down the Champs Elysees towards the Arc de Triomphe. The Christmas lights were all still up so it was very beautiful. We stood for a while and I of course cried because it was our last night in Paris and James would be going home soon.

Once my tears had dried up James said “so I might have bought you something at the antique market today…” All I could think about was that dang stuffed animal, but then he pulled out a little black box. He opened it and got down on one knee. It was a beautiful antique engagement ring he brought all the way from home. I was so surprised! I was once again a crying mess (and being sick didn’t really help). I’ve always dreamed about him proposing in Paris, I can’t believe it really happened! I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with him.

Place de la Concorde

We just had the next morning/early afternoon in Paris and then left on a train back to Cambrai. We walked around another one of my favorite areas of Paris, the Latin Quarter. It was cold, but lovely. We had crepes on Rue Mouffetard, walked around the Jardin de Luxembourg, and visited the Pantheon. This is probably one of the last pictures we took before leaving Paris.

Pont Neuf


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