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Monday, April 09, 2007

Paris avec la DarNat

So here's what we actually did in Paris, in more detail than is strictly necessary... But really, this blog is more for me than it is for you.

DarNat were travelling with Daorcey's parents (Colin and Jannose) who were chaperoning a school trip around war sites in France and Belgium. As they had three days in Paris at the end of the tour, I figured I may as well hop the Eurostar and go for a visit.

As noted previously, we met at the Eiffel Tower, where we ditched the 20 teenagers (leaving them with their teachers and the tour guide) and headed to the Arc de Triomphe where we watched the mayhem that is the massive traffic circle (video).

We then trudged/metroed back to Bastille, where Daorcey got us lost looking for their hotel before heading to a supremely shit dinner (green beans!). Such a shame to have a bad dining experience in Paris... So we got a bottle of wine, and headed back to DarNat's hotel, where Daorcey and I got drunk and talked about media while Nat fell asleep -- but not before the return of Private Obvious. I returned to my hostel and crawled into bed in my darkened room, trying not to disturb my dutch roommates unnecessarily...

The next day, we again ditched the tour group, opting to walk to the Louvre along the river rather than go on a bus tour with the teenagers. The Louvre (video) is as it always is: frustratingly crowded and not worth the fuss. Amazing collection, horribly presented. Such a shame. But we did get to see Napoleon coronating himself this time... (which really deserves a post of it's own) and we did get to see the flying spaghetti monster (video).

We then rejoined the kids for an hour in Montmartre (video1, video2). If you've been there recently, you'll know all about the annoying dudes with the bracelet scam. If you haven't, and you plan to go, don't let anyone make you a bracelet. Anyway, some dude tried to get me to go along with his scam, and this exchange occurred:

Me, loudly: No, no, no.
Him, abrasively: You should go to Iraq and get your throat slit.

Excellent. After that, we were off to dinner at a crazy Greek restaurant in the Latin Quarter, where the waiters tried to get their hands all over the cuter girl teenagers, and where natalie confused one kid by telling him: "Love between two men is the purest form of love there is." This was prompted by a decorative plate illustrated by two men engaged in uh, love. Then we took the boat tour (video).

The next/last day, we were off to Versailles. Annoyingly, the employees of the palace had decided -- being French -- not to work for the first hour. Some sort of work to rule campaign. By the time they stopped striking, the lineups were massive -- but they were less lineups and more scrums. Scrums of European teenagers with mullets and skinny jeans. As you can imagine, it didn't take long for me to lose my temper.

We eventually got into the building, speedwalked through some very fancy rooms (video) to the other Coronation of Napoleon painting and then ditched out to the gardens... After opting to not go back to Paris with the group, we rented bikes and cycled around Marie Antoinette's crazy town, got yelled at by French police (apparently, being English isn't an excuse) and then trained it back to Paris, where we walked around the Latin Quarter -- andI finally got to look around Shakespeare and Co, the most amazing bookstore ever; none of the books on the top floor are for sale, but you can hang out and read them -- before going for dinner near Republique.

And then we tried to go to bed, while the teenagers tried to get drunk. We both eventually succeeded.

More pics live here and videos live here.

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Blogger Will said...

I went to that Shakespeare bookshop too! Ace!


Blogger Daorcey said...

There's nothing more satisfying than cool teenagers being hungover and vomiting.

Yeah, I'm old and bitter.


Blogger Nicole said...

Best bookshop in the world. I love it.



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