Just checking in again. I probably won’t be so good at posting later in our trip when we’re on the true “honeymoon” portion. That might be because T will threaten to throw my computer in the Mediterranean. Plus, I don’t think Santorini is too complicated, necessitating frequent wifi-connected requests for directions, hours, prices, etc. Santorini is more like sleep, wake up, eat, lounge about, eat more, lounge more, repeat. At least that’s my plan.
So is anyone following this? I am pretty sure my mom is reading the posts, but if others of you are, go ahead and leave a comment. It will make any future returns to wifi-land all the more enjoyable.
Anyhow, today! It’s not over yet, but I’m sure I won’t feel like posting when I head to bed tonight, even if it’s early. It’s only 7:36 now, and I’m already experiencing some jet lag-related tiredness on the train. Speaking of train, guess what! I’m on my first ever European train ride! Although I’ve been around Europe before, I travel within the mainland, so I flew from place to place. I am currently on a 2.5 hr trip from Paris to Aachen, Germany.
Don’t let me get ahead of myself, though! T and I truly enjoyed our Parisian day today. I have been worried about being too caught up in planning every detail of our trip to enjoy the trip. Turns out, it’s not hard to enjoy a day in Paris hanging out with T.
(P.S. just passed a huge lot of VW Golfs and maybe other models, brand new, in the middle of a field. Interesting things one sees as she passes through Europe by train…)
Our day started with breakfast at the hotel, also compliments of my status as a Hilton Honors member. The buffet was about the same as a typical Hilton breakfast buffet (I’ve fortunately or perhaps unfortunately partaken of quite a few in my travels.). The buffet was just more Euro and had no cereal. Happily, there were chocolate croissants and many sizes of French baguettes. T can down a baguette like nobody’s business, so we joked that he should sneak out a full-sized one for later.
As with most Hilton breakfasts, the chefs offer to make special-order hot breakfast items like omelets, waffles, and pancakes for guests. I almost never request them because they take time. And I try to stick to healthy items for work travel. But on vacation you get the double benefit of plenty of time and calories that don’t count!
I ordered “French Toast” and T ordered a “Belgian Waffle,” neither of which turned out very much like we’d expect. Luckily for me, my French toast turned out to be the delicious French “pain perdu,” which I suppose is the inspiration for french toast in the first place. But it’s WAY better. It’s actual GOOD French bread, sliced on a bias, and still eggy and soft in the middle. I know you can get this in America, but I typically do not make it this way. I hearby resolve to never make French toast from stale pre-sliced wheat bread again. I didn’t even need syrup on the pain perdu–it was still that moist!
OK, y’all, I know you don’t want a play-by-play of our day, so I’ll speed things along.
Leave some things to the imagination, right, K?
The main thing we did for the rest of the day was participate in the rain-delayed bike tour. It was SO great! (Check out their site if you are planning a trip to Paris soon.) We loved the tour. I once heard that it’s important to experience a place at different speeds. There are aspects of a place that you see uniquely by car or by bike or by foot. I couldn’t agree more. Biking around the center of Paris with a knowledgeable guide was the perfect introduction to this beautiful city.
Highlights of the tour:
- The friendly Aussie-Greek-starving-artist tour guide Nicole who is FROM Heraklion, where T is going next for his conference. Score a LOT more awesome recommendations!
- Learning about the back stories to many places around town as well getting our bearings on several general sectors, like the
Latin Quarter, the Marais, and the left and right banks.
- Learning about a seldom-used entrance to the Louvre that only Parisians and well-informed tourists know about.
- Being able to see so many places without having to walk (or get on a big red bus)! A slightly sore backside is preferred to the aching I’m-not-a-good-European feet.
After the tour, we stopped for two chocolate ice cream cones and then visited Notre Dame. Our sore feet left us without too much desire for more walking, so we went to the train station to people watch before I headed to Germany.
That’s all from Paris, part 1. It was a great introduction, and we have some excellent ideas for the end of our trip when we’ll be spending two more days there.