Paris: Arrivee!

Bonjour from Paris!
We had an exhausting day of travel which had it’s most exciting point as we ran fifteen gates in Dulles because our connection was so tight! So much for arriving fresh as a daisy!
 But I (maybe) ran off the two slices of pizza I ate during the last few hours of packing and cleaning up before we left for the airport.
Don’t worry about me though….we ate an entire baguette with the sweetest butter last night!
Didn’t sleep a wink on the plane of course but spent 8 hours trying to avoid leg cramps, neck cramps and resisting the need to use la toilette so I would not have to make everyone in the row get up again. Travel fun.

Enjoyed an adventure filled ride in a taxi through Paris to our apartment and we were here!
We dropped our things, met the rental agent who spoke no English…thank goodness I can manage in French…and went off to walk a bit. 
We looked longingly at the bed but decided we needed to stay awake.

The window
Here are some leaning out the window to look up and down the street.
a droit (right)
a gauche (left)
across the street from us

The flower shop

Love the gold color here!
Look what I found…nice feet….big price

So, off we went. 
We are in the 4th arrondissement. It is the oldest in Paris and we are right next to the district called the Marais….the very oldest. 
Just a short couple blocks and we are at the Cathedrale de Notre Dame.
 We will go there another day and I will show some pics then.
Last evening we just wandered a bit taking in the neighborhood.
Found a (quite good) jazz combo playing on a bridge.
This is Hotel de Ville. It is absolutely breathtaking.
 It is the “town hall” of the district and they are preparing for a festival right now. 
The stonework is intricate and amazing.

My husband was amazed at the work that went into something as utilarian as a chimney.

Every corner we turned seemed to have a postcard quality

We walked past street booksellers and I browsed a bit there.
We discovered the BHV as well. I remembered it was a large department store….6 floors. 
We went inside. It was very entertaining for DIY’ers like us!  
We found the hardware dept on the bottom floor and my husband said it was 
the most well equipped store he had ever seen.

Everything is designed for those who are living in a city and working on (primarily) apartments….
old apartments. 
Gorgeous door fixtures, window latches, precut, prefinished boards in every length, 
a shoe repair shop, a key making shop, 
a place to order those porcelain number and signs we all love so much and 
I plowed right over to the board hung with enameled numbers and thought
 AHA…something to buy! 
About $20-30 each! Obviously, with these things being sold on Ebay, etc…
there is a cheaper place to buy them than at the BHV! 
A captive audience here I think.
I was hesitant to take pictures in there but we will go back and maybe I can set you drooling when you see the wall of French porcelain numbers and signs!

We were really ready to eat and go to bed so we headed back to our area 
and found a little brasserie that had meat on the menu. LOL!
Parisians eat about 8pm and trying to disguise ourselves as best we could 
(as if we could) 
we nursed a glass of wine and mineral water for about 45 min 
while we watched everyone eating glace and pastries… food. 
Finally, in fractured French, I asked if dinner was served yet…it was about 6pm. 
The waitress said of course and we ordered two steaks with frites.
Happily, we went back to our street, spent about $45+ for some milk, coffee, bread, butter, cheese, beer and olives and went back to the apartment.
For awhile we watched a French show about a magical midget (correction “little person”)
who helps the police (don’t ask) 
until we figured out how to find BBC. 
Thank goodness my husband spent the first half of his life working in TV/radio repair. 
The instructions on the paper in the apartment were simply “turn on the TV and this is the English channel”…..he figured out which remote to use and we found out the weather in Madagascar 
(THAT had been a big concern for us)
from BBC world weather.
Finally, we collapsed into bed. I even slept until 8:30….woohoo!!!
It is now 11:30 and we are just ready to get started….most of the shops below appear to still be closed, there is no traffic and very few people. I can see why they eat at 8pm….their day starts later than most of us, I imagine! We decided today we would sleep in and take it slow. One goal is to see as much as possible but not exhaust ourselves…..we can’t rest up when we get home anymore!!
 We are headed to the Metro in a bit to go to the Louvre. We can walk in 30 min but we need to use the Metro tonight to meet friends for dinner and I’d rather do it 
with some coffee flowing through my veins! 

Off to the Louvre!!
(whoops…while I was typing, my husband crawled back into bed and fell asleep)
I’ll go buy flowers and a sandwich for our lunch first…..
a demain!


  1. Alllison says:

    I’m glad to hear from you.The trip sounds wonderful so far! Enjoy your day!!

  2. Have a good day.

  3. Oh how beautiful ..I miss Europe so much !
    Love the mustard colour on the shop ..and
    what a beautiful pic of the chair in the window ..I know you love that !
    Have a great day today 🙂

  4. How exciting!!!! i hope you are able to soak it all in and just have an amazing time!!! Looking forward to more pics and stories!!!!

  5. Seriously …. you are killing me with these pics. Everything looks like something from a movie. Excuse me while I go watch Roman Holiday and give my husband instructions on some trip planning. haha! So happy you arrived safely and looking forward to all of your travel posts! ENJOY!

  6. Lovely,lovely pics.
    I MUST see Paris before I die. I feel like the only person who hasn’t sometimes. Sigh…

    You are so blessed to be able to do this!

  7. Love this – feel like I am there with you!!!

    So interesting!!

  8. Wow, I never expected we would be traveling along with you. Thanks for taking the time to share your wonderful pictures with us.

  9. But did you eat a macaroon? Are they as good as yours? And what kind of sandwich did you get for lunch? How’s the room? Bathroom? Internet?

    I feel like I’m there with you looking down the street and learning some French besides what I learned in the song Lady Marmalade.


  10. Enjoy your trip. Paris is wonderful. Your pictures take me back to my Paris visit. Have a fantastic, wonderful time.

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