Friday, January 1, 2010

Paris Part Deux

December 30
Today was a big day! After we woke up, Valentin walked down stairs to the Boulangerie (bakery) to get fresh croissants and pain au chocolates. Surprisingly, they were amazing! I don’t even want to know how much butter they had in them. YUM.

We then took the train and metro and finally arrived to the George Pompidou Museum which was showing a Soulage exhibit. The George Pompidou ( is a very ugly building, in my opinion, but has some of the best views of Paris once you are on top is one of my favorite neighborhoods of Paris, near Chatelet and Rue de Rivoli. Once we got there, the line was over 2 hours long. Neither of us could do that, so instead, we decided to walk to the City Hall to rent bikes. On our way, we saw the carousel in front of city hall was offering free rides, so we took advantage and rode the carousel. Why not!

Velib is a fairly new city program that allows you to rent bikes for 1Euro a day and you can drop your bike off at various places within the city. Same concept as Zipcar in San Francisco. Traffic in Paris is very similar to New York, so I never quite understood how it worked, but apparently, is quite successful. Part of me was definitely terrified though. I haven’t ridden a real bike in about 2 years and that was at Tilden Park in the middle of nowhere. We finally got the machine to work and off we were riding bikes in the middle of the Parisian traffic. I definitely got honked at and I screamed a lot, but it was soooooooo fun. Luckily, along the Seine, there are bike tracks, but you share them with the city buses, which I’m convinced purposely try to scare you when they pass by. We rode all the way to the Eiffel Tower to go to the new Quai Branley Museum ( It’s a couple years old, but I had never been and there was no wait to get in. It wasn’t my favorite. It was mainly African and Asian masks and art, which I don’t care much about, but the architecture was amazing and at least I can check it off my list.

Next, we walked to the Eiffel Tower to get some lunch. It was 4 and we still hadn’t eaten anything, which was totally fine with me. I don’t need any more food. But it started raining again, so we found a bistro to get a light meal and some wine. I stuck with French Onion soup since it sounded appropriate. Not the best, but doable. The rain didn’t stop, so we stayed for quite a bit. We saw some tourists get some liter beers like you get in Germany, so we felt obliged to do the same. I think we stayed at our table for 3 hours, but afterall, that’s normal here.

We then left to meet my mom and my Aunt Dany at Rue Montmoartre to go see a comedy show which was hilarious. I had no idea what to expect and ended up almost peeing my pants I laughed so hard. And we saw some French celebrities – Olivier Le Jeune and someone else I can’t remember. My aunt loves Olivier, so after the show, mom went over to him and asked for his autograph and of course told him her life story. He even told her she had a pretty name. Hilarious.

We didn’t get dinner today because of the comedy show, but had to head back home, so didn’t quite know what to do. Surpringly I was hungry and Valentin and I really wanted Aunt Dany to try McDonalds but given how great a cook she is, she wasn’t too keen to try it anytime soon. Somehow, we convinced her to have a chicken sandwich from France’s version of McDonalds called Quick. Her face with the first bit was priceless. She ended up only eating the top part of the bun. However, mission accomplished.

We then took the metro to go back to the Montparnasse station to take the train to Versaille to take the car back to Ormoy. 1:30 am and we finally arrive at Ormoy to go to bed. I’m pretty sure I’ve taken every mode of transportation Paris has to offer at this point.

Camille and Valentin on carousel

Velib station

Camille on bike

On the carousel at city hall

Amazing City Hall

George Pomidou Museum

The beauty

Quai Branly Museum

2cv in Paris

Valentin with liter beers

Dany's first fast food!

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