Thursday, October 23, 2008

J'adore Paris
















Pictures (in order from top to bottom):
1. Doing C-A-T-S in front of the Arc
2. Being a tourist with my beret
3. In front of the Louvre
4. Inside Notre Dame
5. Outside Notre Dame
6. La Seine River
7. Me
8. Karen
9. Melissa
10. Joe-Michael
11. Tower at night
12. Tower during the day. With the EU stars
13. Arc de Triomphe and I
14. Sacre Couer
15. Hanging out the hotel window
To see all of my pictures on PhotoBucket go to:
On the left you will see a list of the different Albums. Just click on the one you want and the pictures will come up. I separated them by city to make them easier to view.

So last weekend our fellow Global Scholars who are studying in Vienna made their way to good ole Dijon. Melissa and Joe-Michael got here on the Thursday and we met them at the train station. That night Le Chat Noir was having a black and white party for students. First we took our friends to the Irish girls’ apartment to meet everyone and then headed to Le Chat Noir. It ended up being a lot of fun and even our advisor was there…talk about awkward.

Friday during the day we showed Mel and Joe around Dijon and our school. It didn’t take very long seeing as Dijon is fairly small and our school only has about 3 buildings. Friday night we all just hung out at our place because we were leaving for Paris in the morning!

When we arrived in Paris the first thing we did was check into our hotel. Our room was on the 6th floor and we had a great view from out little balcony! As soon as we walked out of our hotel we saw a protest (imagine that!). Our first destination was Sacre Couer which is the Sacred Heart church that is perched on the highest point in Paris. On the way up the streets are lined with little souvenir shops. We had to climb up numerous steps but once we got to the top it was worth it. The church and the view were both very beautiful. We saw a guy on a pillar juggling a soccer ball all different ways. It was crazy! He even climbed to the top of a lamp post while balancing the ball on his head.

When we were going back down the hill, there were all these artists displaying and selling their pieces. All of them were extremely well done and detailed and it was fun to look through them. Back at the bottom we hopped back on the subway and headed to the Arc de Triomphe. Talk about a site! It’s located in the middle of the Champs-Elysees, probably the most famous avenue in Paris. We wanted to enter the UK study abroad photo contest so we decided to spell out C-A-T-S with our bodies in front of the Arc. When we heard a guy speaking English we asked him to take our picture and it turns out he was from Northern Kentucky! How in the world do I find a random guy in France and he is from the same exact place as me? Talk about a small world. He goes to UC though (poor thing).

Around the Arc is a huge traffic circle that is wide enough to fit about 8 lanes of cars. However, I guess the French never quite got around to putting in lanes because it is basically a free-for-all and cars are allowed to go wherever they want. It is a jumbled mess of cars honking and the slamming of breaks to avoid wrecks.

After taking pictures with the Arc we skipped down the Champs-Elysees checking out all the expensive designer shops and restaurants. At the end we got back on the metro and headed to the Eiffel tower! As soon as it came into view I got so excited! It’s actually brown in color and for some reason I always thought it was green. However, it IS ridiculously huge and just standing under it is truly unreal. Unfortunately, the lines were too long to go to the top but we took a bunch of pictures and planned to come back at night.

Next, we walked down some streets until we found a restaurant in which we could relax and eat. I had a rib-eye steak and French fries (shocker). Once we left it was quite dark outside so we headed back to the tower. The light show had begun and the whole tower was bright blue! Just when I thought it couldn’t get any better is started to SPARKLE white lights all over like a spastic Christmas tree! It was amazing! We spent the next ten minutes just staring in awe and taking a plethora of pictures.

On the way back to our hotel we stop in a little bar we found to hang out before we went to bed. There were these mirror-like wall hangings all over the bar and out of boredom we decided to each emulate one of them. (See pictures) After we had had our fun we went back to the hotel and slept. The next morning we headed to the area around La Seine where there are many historic buildings. We went in one castle-like structure that happened to be where Marie-Antoinette was imprisoned. Next up was Notre Dame! As soon as I saw it I was ecstatic. It’s gorgeous! We went inside and were allowed to walk around and take pictures just as mass was starting. The inside is so ornate and complex and the stained glass windows were incredible!

Once back outside, we signed up for a boat tour on La Seine. We got off at the stop for the Louvre. We did not have time to go in but we got pictures from the outside. I swear it seemed almost as big as Versailles! The building went on forever. I was pumped to see the glass triangles in the front because I remembered them from French books in high school. I hope I have a chance to go inside when we have more time!

Once we got back to the Champs-Elysees we had to say good-bye to Melissa and Joe. Karen and I had to eat and then catch our train back to Dijon. It was sad to see them go but we were lucky to have had two beautiful sunny days in Paris!

This week we actually had a lot of classes and homework. How inconvenient J Today is Thursday and we leave at 9:00pm for Italy! We have a week off school so why not? We are going to Rome for 4 days where I will get to see Mary (and hopefully the Pope)! After that we head to Florence for 2 days and Milan for 2 days. Milan happens to be the fashion capital of the world, so I’m sure you can guess how excited I am for that! Well I will write again when I return! Check out the pictures! Ciao!

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