Friday, 9 December 2011

Sarah's Fun Fact Fridays! - Oui Oui Paris j'adore!

Si vous lisez, le vendredi nous sommes a Paris! 

2 years ago we had our first joint trip to Paris – separately we have both been to Paris numerous times for school trips, days out and family holidays but never before had we been to Paris at Christmas time. 

Normally holidays should be spent in the sun (well so Sarah thought) but there is something magical about Paris at Christmas. 

On our first trip we arrived in Paris after a trip on the Eurostar to find our hotel room had a view of the Eiffel Tower. After embracing the romantic atmosphere and testing the bed we set about finding our way to Champs de Elysees. 

Strolling hand in hand dressed in warm winter coats we posed for photos and found an amazing restaurant to have dinner. The best thing about the Avenue des Champs-Élysées at this time of year is the fact that it has a Christmas market or village (19th November - 24th December 2011) - in fact Paris has plenty of markets around in the 6th arondissement at Saint Germain des Prés (Santa's village, from early December), and at St. Sulpice (from around 10th December - crafts and traditions). Others can be found at in the Trocadero Gardens (mid to end December 2011) Montparnasse, the Gare de l'Est and the Place de la Nation (from Dec. 1st).  

Of course we did the usual Eiffel Tower admiring and enjoyed the view from the Arc de Triumph (after all a view of Paris has to include the Eiffel Tower and if you are up it, it defeats the point). We then found an antiques market and got lost in sampling food!

In fact it was a perfect trip......until the end! Have you ever heard of the film 'Planes, trains and automobiles'? Film synopsis = 2 guys trying to get home for Christmas, transport trouble and weather forces them to use all modes of transport! What has this got to do with our trip to Paris? OK well we were enjoying our food when we realised the time- we had an hour to get across Paris to the airport - not good! So we got on the metro and arrived at the airport with 30 minutes to spare. Except we were in the wrong terminal - our terminal was a 20 minute walk away- I tried to convince an airport worker that Laura had broken her ankle and could they let our flight know that we were in the airport and on our way (whether it got lost in translation or we weren't convincing enough the answer was NO - and yup we missed the flight! Plan B = book new flights.....ohno not that simple, it turns out that as I am a few years older than Laura, and was over 25, I had to pay £700 for my flight while Laura paid £200! Now we don't have that kind of money so that plan was ruled out. Stuck in the airport, unable to get a flight & without any more metro tickets (oh and needing to be back to deliver a training course the next morning) panic set in. First tears, then more panic, then steadfast determination to get home! Plan C = get the we 'illegally' jumped back on to the metro and made it back to the Gard de Nore and to the EuroStar....this time £200 each for 1st class tickets on a train that left in an hour. Once on the train we realised a slight problem - my car was at Heathrow Airport and the EuroStar gets into St Pancreas. (Are you seeing the link to the film?) Once back in the UK we had to get a tube to Heathrow, then a bus to our car AND THEN we drove home! 2 lessons here - DON'T FORGET TO KEEP AN EYE ON THE TIME and DON'T MISS YOUR FLIGHT! Lets hope that we have learnt our lessons this time!

And as this is Fun Fact Friday here are a few French facts for you before we go…..
Paris is the capital city of France, the largest country of Europe with 550 000 km2.
Paris, with 2 million inhabitants, is the center of Ile de France, a 12 million people region. 
Each year, 44 million tourists visit Paris and the surrounding Ile de France region. Paris is year after year the most visited city in the world.
The top attractions are Disneyland (15 million visitors a year), the Louvre Museum (8), the Eiffel Tower (7), Centre Pompidou (5), Versailles Palace (5) and Cite des Sciences(3).
We will be adding to our top spots to visit over the next few days so for now Au Revoir.....

1 comment:

  1. Love it but writing your blog isn't exactly packing! :D Anyway, have an awesome weekend! :D


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