Friday, 9 January 2015

Paris, Day One

A couple of months ago I began a series of blog posts called Travel Bucket List, and number one on that list: Paris. I've wanted to visit Paris for as long as I can remember. Everything about it is just beautiful: the architecture; the culture; the lights. So when I found out Mr R had spent months secretly planning to whisk me off to Paris for my 21st birthday it was like a dream come true!

After traveling home from uni, I was up and at St Pancras the next day. A couple of hours later and we were walking up the steps out of the Metro. Unfortunately we were welcomed by winter rain, but as soon as I caught a glimpse of the lit up Eiffel Tower through the gaps in the buildings, I couldn't care less about the weather. I was finally in Paris!

We dropped our bags off in the hotel and set out straight away to find somewhere for dinner. I decided that I wanted to stick to traditional French food for the weekend to make the most of our French experience, so we decided to try a small and friendly restaurant of French cuisine just round the corner of our hotel. After attempting to decipher the French menu, I decided to try the saussison with pistachio while Mr R chose the duck (I have to admit, we were kind of making a stab in the dark with our meals, not quite sure at what we had ordered!) My saussison was very yummy, with a delicious gravy poured on top, while Mr R was a bit more adventurous and ordered his duck rare. It was definitely different!
Of course we couldn't say no to dessert! I ordered the mille feuille avec creme de leche, while Mr R chose the tiramisu. I loved the little teacup that the tiramisu came in, but that mille feuille... I'm still on the hunt for something like it!
After dinner we set off in the rain to what I was most looking forward to seeing: the Eiffel Tower! I wasn't disappointed.  After spending so long looking at photos of the Eiffel Tower, it was surreal to actually be there and see it in real life. Even in the rain it was beautiful and surprisingly peaceful as, at midnight, we were basically the only people there.
We wandered underneath and looked up to the top, realising just how dizzingly high it was. No matter what angle you look at it, it's just breath-taking. I could have stayed there for the rest of the night, but eventually the rain and the cold got the better of us so we headed back to the hotel. 

On the way back I noticed glimmering in the windows of some of the buildings. Confused, I pointed it out to Mr R, who insisted it was just Christmas decorations. But then I recognised the shape of the lights, and ran back round the corner, where sure enough, there was the Eiffel Tower sparkling away like a magical Christmas tree, until a couple of minutes later the lights switched off for the night. Definitely a lucky catch!
And that was the end of our first night in Paris! We went to bed happy to finally be here and looking forward to the adventures ahead!

Stay tuned for day two of my weekend in Paris :)

Love, Beth xxx

P.S. In light of the current events at the time of this posting, I just want to pay my respects to the lives lost in the recent Paris shootings. In a modern society where it is basic human right to have freedom of speech, it is absolutely heartbreaking to have that taken away in such a violent and inhumane act. But as with most tragedies such as this, it is incredibly touching to see the unity of people, not only in Paris, but also abroad, coming together to support each other and fight for our freedom of speech. My heart goes out to the friends and families of all those lost, as well as to Paris. 

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