An early(ish) start to the day! Left the hostel at 10am because of the lockout, despite my train not being till 12. So killed a couple of hours in the internet cafe and round the shops.
On the train, at first it looked like I’d be seated next to two lads but it seemed they were in the wrong seats and were quickly replaced by a very beautiful French lass!!! We wound up having a good chat, she just happened to be studying English in Lille as luck would have it! I’m not sure just how into the conversation she was but I wasn’t going to let a woman as beautiful as this one get away that easily!! We wound up exchanging email addresses and got a little help in finding where I was going once of the train but she disappeared (after we’d said our goodbyes) not long afterwards.
According to young Debs, the metro would be a fairly easy option to get to my hotel, but realizing that I wasn’t entirely sure where it was or how to get to it from any given metro station, I opted for the safer bet of a taxi. In finding the taxi rank, I was offered a “cab” for €30. Now to me, that sounded pretty damn expensive as I knew it was all that far from the Gare Du Nord station. The guy said he’d do it for €20 but that still figured as too expensive so just waited in line (for about 45 minutes) for a proper cab. The eventual cost of which? Yep, €6.50. Bargainous!
At the hostel I met one of my two roommates, Debbie, a middle aged American lass and the 2 of us headed out to the Louvre. Nothing like just getting straight in there with some sight seeing! In the end, we decided against going in and wound up having a picnic in the park next to the Louvre. We met a slight problem when the glasses I’d pinched from the hotel to put the wine in had been crushed in my bag so I set about a repair job with a penknife and some green insulating tape I’d brought with me (much to the wonderment of Debbie!). It did the job so what more can I say!!!
Halfway through our rather nice picnic, Debbie commented on a man carrying a briefcase that had been wondering around the same are for quite a while and we had a good chuckle about it, wondering what on earth he was doing. About 20 minutes later the police had arrived and the man, who it seemed had been hiding out in some bushes(!), was tracked by the 3 policemen. It seems our comedy look at the guy had been somewhat misplaced and we brought our belongings just that bit closer!
We continued the walk down the Champs Elysee to the Arc De Triomphe marvelling at the architecture we passed along the way! From here it was down to the Eiffel Tower. This hadn’t really been my plan to do this all today but I was having fun so just went with it.
The Eiffel Tower was actually more spectacular than I had imagined and catching it sparkle as we walked down, I wondered if it would do it again. To our delight at 10pm for 10 minutes we got the rather spectacular sparkling light show. It was definitely one of those moments when you wish you had that special lass with you but I just had to make do with some friendly company. Went up to the 2nd floor as top was closed and there are some spectacular views from even there!! I’d quite like to see it in the day time though as the views were basically just a lot of lights!
Back at the hostel we met the other roommate, a very lovely Aussie girl called Sacha, we managed to stay talking till 3am much to the displeasure of Debbie!! My first experience with a mixed dorm and well, I really didn’t have a problem with it and neither did they it seemed. Will definitely have to get to the Louvre tomorrow if nothing else! Kinda feels like I am having to think about getting to Barcelona already as only really have 2 more days here!