I don't even know where to start. It's nearly impossible to fully capture the magic of Paris with a few words and photos. But I will do my best to translate my experience of the city of beauty, fashion, elegance, history, and romance.
Jordan and I were nervous to travel and stay in a foreign country where neither of us spoke the language fluently. Even after my four years of french classes, I was rusty and forgetful. Thankfully we had time in the airport for me to brush up, and to teach Jordan the basics. We found that getting around in Paris was actually pretty easy, and we ended up meeting some very helpful and friendly people - the rumors about the french being stuck up aren't exactly true from what I can tell.
We had plenty of time to see the major sights, with extra hours to spend in the culture of Parisian cafe's indulging in the delicious food and espresso. Jordan was an excellent navigator and Metro coordinator, and I was there for moral support. Unfortunately I am severely directionally challenged. But by Sunday, we knew our way around Paris better than Dublin!
My french stamp! I am so proud of my passport.
Notre Dame, and the star in the center of the city.
Jordan and I walked along the Seine for a few hours. This was one of the best ways to experience the romance of Paris.
So much espresso. And not just regular espresso, it was always pretty and decorated like this little guy.
Souvenir shopping and browsing.
And the famous "Tour Eiffel"
We went up to the top of the tower and stayed until the sun went down. Advice from my dear friend George, who lived in Paris for a semester and gave us so many tips!
The real Mona Lisa. We got as close to her as possible.
Jordan being his studly self, reading our map and getting us around the city
Shakespeare and Company Bookstore, recommended by everyone I know who has been to Paris. The shopkeepers even speak English! It was such a relief.
This was our favorite cafe of all. la fourmi ailée had authentic french cuisine and a wide selection of teas brought to us in a cast iron pot. Our waiter was also super friendly and spoke really well English for being a Frenchman.
Streets of Paris
Shopping at Naf Naf on Champs-Élysées
Jordan and I had extremely sore feet at the end of each day. Since we had already stuffed our bellies, and we didn't want to be lame and go back to our hostel, we went to the movies! Twice. It was a great experience. I was fascinated by the french previews and theater setup. Saturday night was The Fighter, which was amazing. The acting was some of the best I have seen in a long time. Transforming performances by Christian Bale, Amy Adams, and Melissa Leo. And Saturday was the night I finally got to see Black Swan! An epic film that took us a few hours to digest. I am so glad Natalie Portman won the Oscar for Best Actress. Well deserved to say the least.
Sunday night we went all out at Häagen-Dazs Gold Room - sit down restaurant. For dinner we had dark chocolate fondue ice cream balls with fresh fruit, brownies, and cookies for dipping. Heavenly.
We were not ready to leave by Monday. For both Jordan and I, this was by far one of our favorite vacations we had ever been on. He promised me that we would go back someday. I will miss the melodic sounds of the french language, but the taste of the Paris air, crepes, warm espresso, and french onion soup will never be forgotten.