McFizzy's "Stop Stealing my Technology, France!" Trip Report


#1

Hi MB friends,

Sorry it has taken me so long to get started on this. Had to get settled this weekend at home, get the laundry done, and get back into the swing at work.

But here it goes!

Cast: Me (Michelle, 28)
DH (Mike, 32)

Dates: May 12 - May 22

Places: Paris, Belgium, and Disneyland Resort Paris!

Departure Day, May 12

Unfortunately this was not a great day for me to start with. The day before, I had gotten a call from my doctor to come in on the 12th for some tests results, and I needed to come in right away.

I won’t get into the details here, but its nothing terrible or life threatening, so don’t worry - she just wanted to get me in there so I could get a specialist referral going now that we knew what the problem was.

I was sad because of the test results, but it can be treated, and I have a specialist appt scheduled for August, so all I can do now is think positively, right? And I wasn’t going to let this news ruin our anniversary trip.

So after my doctors appt we drove home and took a taxi to the airport. We live about 15 mins by car from the Toronto airport, so we were there in no time.

Check in was a breeze and soon we were waiting to board.


#2

Day 1: May 13

7 hours later we arrived at Charles De Gaulle airport in France. We decided to take a taxi downtown instead of the RER (commuter train) because we just wanted to get there so we could have a shower and relax for half an hour.

Here’s me in the taxi on the way to the hotel:

And the street our hotel was on:

We stayed in the 1st arrondissment, in the centre of the city. We were pretty much across the street from the Louvre, which was cool.


#3

Oh, pictures from across the pond. I love it already. More please :biggrin:


#4

And here are some pics of our hotel, “L’Empire Paris”.
It was a beautiful hotel. Boutique style, very contemporary, perfect for us.

Location couldn’t have been better either.

The Exterior

The Lobby

Each room had its own name - ours was “Saxe”

The King sized bed (which was a nice break from our usual Queen!)

The awesome mini bar where everything costed a small fortune, and thus, was never used


#5

The TV

The Desk Area

The Bathroom


#6

OMG!!! OMG!!!

I have been waiting for this TR!

Welcome back!

Love the pics

Lisa


#7

Interesting way to deal with the toilet paper :laugh:


#8

Ok, so we had arrived. We were showered and dressed.

We sooooooooo wanted to have a nap but knew better - its much better to stay up and then go to bed at a decent time when jet lagged than to nap, right?

So instead we did a little bit of sightseeing.

I’m not going to describe every moment or post every picture, since it was all so much. Instead, I will just post the higlights of what we did each day, any funny or itneresting things that happened that day, and pics to accompany.

So after we arrived, we wanted to take a long walk to stretch our legs after a long flight, and see a few things.

We walked through the Jardin de Tuillleries (gorgeous park!), to Place de la Concorde, a plaza home to a really cool Egyptian Obelisk, and about 1 hour down the Champs Elysees (a very busy and long street in Paris, to L’Arc de Triomphe.

L’Arc de Triomphe was much much bigger than I imagine it would be. And climbing the spiral staircase to the top was such a workout for 2 jet-legged Canadians!

We went to bed early this night, around 10, so that we would be fresh and ready for the morning.

Jardin de Tuillleries

The Obelisk at Place de la Concorde


#9

the Fountain at Place de la Concorde

Doesn’t look like an hour walk to the Arc, does it?

Walking to the Arc


#10

Aw, thanks! :wub:


#11

I know!
I also find it funny that they have the “little flush” and “big flush” buttons! :laugh:


#12

Arriving at L’Arc de Triomphe:

Outside

The stairs to climb to the top :ohmy:


#13

Out of breath at the top :laugh:

There was this cool video monitor in the middle of the floor where you could see what was going on below:

View from the top:


#14

Terrific TR and wonderful photos!


#15

View from the top continued

That was pretty much it for day 1.
I got to brush up on my rusty French (I went to a French immerison school as a child/teen, but hadn’t spoken it often for quite some time, so I was happy to be speaking the language again), and we got to stretch our legs.

We were in bed by 10, and asleep as soon as our heads hit the pillow!


#16

Love the pictures!


#17

lovely pictures McFizz!!!
I adore them and I can’t wait to see more!


#18

Day 2, May 14

We slept in until almost 12 o’clock! Didn’t even hear the alarm go off.
So we felt a bit rushed, but still managed to achieve or goals for this day, which were to see the Catacombs, and Notre Dame. And I have a very interesting story to share about what I felt when I went to sleep this night, and every night we were in Paris thereafter, until we left for Belgium.

The coles notes history of the catacombs is that the unsanitary conditions of a large number of graves/cemetaries in the Les Halles district in Paris caused rampant disease, and so, in the dead of night, for months and months, workers unearthed the remains (pretty much just bones), and built a series of tunnels under the city in which they buried the bones, neatly, in stacks.

I am not going to post pictures of the inside of the catacombs, since I don’t know if its appropriate for a family forum if there are people who are sqeamish, etc. But let me say this - it was insane. Imagine walking along a mile of tunnel and the walls on either side of you are many feet deep and as high as the celing, and all bones - skulls and bones stacked 5 feet deep.

This was DH’s choice to see, not mine. It seriously creeped me out.

Here we are, scared to go in

And the sign outside the entryway in, which, in English, reads:
“Stop! This the empire of death!”

I will just leave it at that.

We then proceeded to Notre Dame.


#19

Notre Dame was a beautiful church, but we weren’t allowed to take pictures inside.
But before I saw the sign that said so, I did take 1 pic of the main area, and 2 cool pics of the stained glass (of which I wanted to frame for my dining room).

Outside Notre Dame:

Inside Notre Dame:


#20

And the beautiful stained glass.

We went back to the hotel to freshen up, etc, and then went out to a couple of places.

For dinner we went to a cute little cafe near our hotel. There were so many to choose from, they are everywhere.
I enjoyed a delicious pasta, and a nutella crepe. DH had a steak. I love nutella :heart: and eat it at home all the time, but its just that much better eating it at a streetside Paris cafe :wub:

We took the metro to the Opera station for 3 reasons:

  1. To see the Opera House. Wow!

  2. To have a pint at one of the most famous bars in the world, “Harry’s New York Bar”, creater of the sidecar and bloody Mary, as well as home to the international league of barflies

  3. And to have dessert, which we did at this cute place