Thursday, May 13:  PARIS!!!

Today I was woken by my dad’s alarm clock, and was reluctant to get up. I did, and started packing my bags. Soon I was finished, and we went into the hotel to eat breakfast. I had the usual, except for a second serving of hot cocoa. We went back inside, and brushed our teeth and stuff, while Robert and I watched the awesome ducks. Our parents told us too grab our bags, and get out to the car, we did so, and loaded up. My dad payed the man at the desk, and thanked him, and we drove off. We were going to PARIS!!! I could hardly wait. This was also going to be our last drive with the Peugeot, because we were selling it back at Charles de Gaulle airport, and travel Paris on foot, like Rome (and also London, next). It was a three hour drive, so I read my book, until we got near the city. We just saw little houses, until... THERE IT WAS! It was so amazing, with huge impressive buildings, churches, and a little bit of the Eiffel Tower was visible. We followed the industrial side until we got to the airport. We drove into a lot, with many other cars. We wondered why we had a red license plate this whole time, and now we figured it out. It meant that you were on a buy-back deal, and we were. My dad parked around all of the other cars, and talked to a man in a booth. He must have given him some forms or something, because soon Dad came back, saying that we were all clear. He then took us to terminal three, ahead, and we walked inside to made a pay call to the taxi service to see if they could pick us up earlier. It was 12:00, and we scheduled it for 2:00.

They said no, so we decided to look around the airport for a place to eat lunch and wait. We found a little place, where I got a ham baguette, and a Fanta. We sat down at little cafe’ style tables, and we ate it. My sandwich was very good, and the Fanta was too. When I finished, we still had an hour to go, so I played a long game of solitaire, but I lost. My brother drew pictures. Finally it was time to go out, so we rushed outside, to the taxi area. We were waiting for a very long time, probably a half an hour, until finally a green mini-van pulled up. It wasn’t really a taxi, but it took you from the airport to your spot in Paris. There were two other groups in there, and we all managed to fit. The driver was nice, and wasn’t a grouch. It took a long time to get in Paris, and then to drop everyone else off, but finally, we reached our spot. It was on the nice side of the river, and a few blocks away from the Louvre! It was what you would think of as a typical Paris street. We weren’t staying in a hotel this time, but in an apartment! Marie-France (Figeac) owns this apartment, and heard we were going to Paris, so she insisted on us staying there. We agreed, and couldn’t thank her enough, and now we were here.

My dad met a lady near the elevator, and she gave us the keys, so we thanked her and went up to the 4th floor. There were two apartments here, so we took the right one and looked around. It was huge! There was a main hallway branching off a kitchen, a living room, a workspace, 2 toilets, 1 bathroom, and 3 bedrooms! We raced into our room, a cozy little space, with one bed and a cot. Robert got the cot. There was lots of space, so I dumped my stuff, then explored the rest of the house. The living room was nice, with a table and a sitting area with some nice chairs. The workspace was cluttered with papers, so I left it alone. My parents room was bigger, with a double bed, and the same view as us, of the backside of a church, and some little industrial space. The other side of the house, the workspace, living room, and unused bedroom, had a view of the really beautiful street. Suddenly, we heard the doorbell, and my brother went and got it. It was Blandine! Blandine is one of Marie-France and Thierry’s daughter, and her apartment is below us. She said hello, but said she could only drop by quickly, because she had to pick up one of her kids from school. We said bye, and she said she’d be back. She reminded me of Paul’s mom (her sister), but with longer hair. I finished unpacking, and then we went out to buy some food. We were looking for a little supermarket, only mini, with a certain name, and there were a lot of them. We finally found the right one, and went inside. Robert and I grabbed a caffeine free coke, coconut cookies, and bugles. We went to the checkout counter and purchased them, and then went out. We decided to deposit our groceries, so we went to the room to find Blandine there.

We said hello, and my parents chatted for a long time, while I loaded my pictures and read some books. After a while she left, and my dad really wanted to go on a walk, so we rushed back out again. It was cold up here, so I had to wear my coat. We walked out to the river, and across, to see the Louvre! I won’t talk about it now, because we will be visiting it in greater depth in the course of the next few days. Everyone was hungry, so we went inside the cafeteria, underneath the Louvre, for dinner. It was like a food court, with many restaurants. I ended up going to a pizza place, where I got a quarter of pizza, a desert, and a Fluo drink. I got cheese pizza, tiramisu, and lemon Fluo. Robert had Fluo in Minerve for lunch, and it was lemon ginger fizzy water, and is made by Perrier, a famous French water company. Everything was delicious, and I liked it. It wasn’t a “memorable” Paris dinner, but was still great. What was cool was that when you get a Fluo, you get a little watch on a stretchy rubber thing, like a gummy, with a little piece of machinery in the middle that told time. Mine was yellow, and had the name on it. I set it, and put it on. Then we went down the escalator to the big room where you exit the museum, with a huge glass pyramid! It was hanging upside down, and was supported by cables. It was really neat! Then we exited the museum, and started the main part of our walk. It was a little cloudy, but beautiful out, as we walked along the river. Then we turned right, into the busy part of town, then right again, and eventually looped back to the apartment. There we went back upstairs, and to bed. Tomorrow we can explore the depths of Paris!