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I love Paris in the summer when it drizzles and is about 50°F and I don't have my raincoat on...

Becky and I set the alarm to go off at 9:30, but I woke up at 9 and the sun was out and I was covered in too many blankets and my clothes desperately needed to be folded. Who knows? I'd only had 5 hours of sleep, so it almost makes sense that I fell out of bed and started folding all of my new clothes.

Becky and I showered and dressed and left the hotel by 10am. First destination: Um, it's a secret. Uh, I mean... nowhere. We didn't go anywhere at all. Well, okay... Starbucks. Okay? Fine! We went to Starbucks! And I had a chai tea latte and it was heaven, okay? It's the freakin' 4th of July, okay? I have to celebrate my nation in some way! Cut me some slack!

*buries face in hands*

Well, at least it wasn't McDonalds.

Becky and I then went our separate ways. She went to the Musée d'Orsay and I went to the Louvre. Because it was the first Sunday of the month, the museums were free. This was nice in terms of my empty pockets, but kind of a drag because everyone and their mother and her kitchen sink were there. I decided that I wanted to do more than the Louvre and since it was free, I wouldn't feel bad about rushing through it.

So I set out to see one thing I hadn't seen on previous trips. I picked the French crown jewels and walked around the wings to find them. I got to the room where they were supposed to be and found a sign saying that they had been moved to another room. I went to that room and it was under construction. No dice. So I went and saw the Mona Lisa instead. Meh. At least I got to see Jesus and The Commemorative Crucifixion Tea-Towel Vendor on the way.

Sometimes when I'm in a very touristy place, I like to wonder where my face is going to go to. There are always strangers in your photos when you're taking these pictures and people come from all over the world to take them. I also ended up walking back and forth in front of Nike of Samothrace about eleven times, so I'm sure I'll be all over the world in a few days.

After the Louvre, I set out in search of a bookstore, armed with a few tips my roommate Caroline had given me. I found Shakespeare & Co. and wasn't terribly impressed, but I had to meet my friend Andrés so I didn't look for any others.

I took the Metro to the Parc de la Villette, where Andrés and his friends were having a picnic. Andrés (aka Don Shakiro), as you may remember, is the former Spanish assistant at the Lycée Valéry Larbaud, with whom I may or may not have had a torrid secret affair.

Anyway, he ended up running late, then it started raining, then his friends were running late, then it stopped raining... by the time we actually sat down for the picnic, it was actually nice out. Unfortunately, I had to leave early so that I could catch my train. They convinced me to stay a bit longer, then I ended up losing track of time.

When I realized what time it was, I said my goodbyes quickly and raced for the Metro, calling Becky and Eirlys, who were already sitting on the train. Meanwhile, I still hadn't collected my bag from the hotel! In the end, it turned out that the train they were on was not the one that we'd all agreed on, but another train to Blois that left around 5:30.

So Anca got to the station at the right time, right about the time I was approaching the hotel. She very kindly waited for me, so the four of us got to Blois an hour apart. Becky and Eirlys had waited for us with Jackie, who came to pick us up, and we all went back to P--------.

By the time I got back to the abbey, I was so worn out from two non-stop days of walking and taking trains and Metros and not sleeping, that I couldn't bring myself to attend the 4th of July barbecue (with marshmallow-roasting!) that was going on across the grounds, or even to climb the two flights to the kitchen for dinner! I scrounged around my room and snacked and climbed into bed and finished The Da Vinci Code before falling asleep.

srah - Sunday, 4 July 2004 - 4:35 PM
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Comments (6)

gravatar mommy - July 6, 2004 - 12:55 PM -

We watched 1776, but it wasn't the same without you singing and dancing along.

gravatar srah - July 6, 2004 - 1:27 PM -

"Not the same" is srahfamilyish for "So much better than I ever thought it could be"!

gravatar MaTT - July 6, 2004 - 1:42 PM -

We didn't have any singing or dancing at our viewing of 1776 either... i felt like i was missing out. But my parents were singing "He plays the violin..." yesterday. that was cute. :D

gravatar Court - July 6, 2004 - 9:17 PM -

Starbucks in Paris was in oasis in the desert.

gravatar Cheryl - July 6, 2004 - 10:20 PM -

You're totally Real World Paris!

gravatar srah - July 7, 2004 - 3:50 AM -

I am! :'(

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