Sorry if any of the photos or videos don’t work but I’m having all sorts of WiFi issues tonight!
It’s been a few years since I was in Paris, and of course one can expect a cosmopolitan city like Paris to have changed and morphed a lot in 7 years. It was only our first real day, so perhaps things will change, but to me I feel it’s changed so much and lost some of its beauty or charm!
The traffic is more horrendous than ever – our ride from the airport took nearly two hours (perhaps it was the time of day of course), and today there was limited public transport because of a strike so you can imagine what traffic was like. But it’s as if Paris has grown too big – there is simply not enough space for so many cars – and scooters! I don’t remember there being so many motorbikes and scooters weaving in and out of traffic, constantly on their horn. Was I in la-la land last time? Possibly – it was my first time!
I’m also probably being Negative Nancy because we’re having difficulties with the hotel. The type of room we booked versus what we are actually sleeping in seems incongruous but they don’t understand what myself or Chris are talking about. Classic versus Executive versus Standard versus what is on their website, language barrier, overall terrible customer service (no one ever answers the phone or is at the front desk!) etc. Either way, we’re without a fridge or a kitchen of any description, so all meals have to be eaten out. By this point of the trip, this is bad news haha. I am so strapped – what luck is it that payday is the day I get home!? Talk about poor planning. This morning’s breakfast was a shared croissant and a banana. Oh how the mighty have fallen!
Anyway enough whinging from me. I’m in Paris for God’s sake! Let the fun begin! So today we woke up early (legit 7.30 am is like sunrise here!) and set off to collect our tickets for our Eiffel Tower climb (by climb I mean elevator). Hardy has seen the tower on Peppa Pig so he is 100% aware of what happens. ‘If you feel sick, just close your eyes and keep climbing.’ This is exactly what Daddy Pig does in the episode and ends up right at the very top, clinging to the antenna!
Our tour guide knew all the facts and considering I hadn’t heard them before it was super interesting! How it was originally red, then yellow (or vice versa) and how it took 2 years to build and Gustav was a total gazillionaire etc. But, it’s saving grace – helping to save Paris in WWII. By installing radio antennae at the very top, they could listen to a whole lot more chatter, including that of troops closing in and Mata Hari who had been a difficult spy to catch prior.
Anyway, the tower charmed me once again.
But back down on the ground I was again in a grump. The weather wasn’t great, I’m poor, blah blah blah woe is me. Anyway, to avoid any rain we ventured to Galleries Lafayette. Important to know there is an ‘a’ after the f, not an ‘e’ which caused much confusion with my Uber driver (sorry Erin!). It’s such a beautiful building and I hadn’t seen it before so I was glad to. Even if I couldn’t afford anything inside it apart from some Lego for my beloved. Once inside you are absorbed by the normal shopping centre atmosphere but once you look up or out, you remember where you are.
Because of the public transport strike and to avoid forking out more money for a taxi or an Uber, I thought I’d walk. HAHAHAHAHA silly girl. It took hours. Well, that included a well-deserved rest at the Jardin de Tuileries. I tried to cheap-skate lunch but even that turned out to be expensive! The upside of course was being in Paris and observing all there is to see (well at least a portion) and the lovely smooth paths which the pram (and me) are most grateful for!
After being out for about 10 hours we decided to stay in tonight and look for snails for dinner tomorrow night. We will continue to battle Paris and the hotel tomorrow!