January 01, 2018

^^^ name that movie! Except if you're Stefan, because I know for a fact you haven't seen it.

I had to talk myself into it, but half way through our trip to the Netherlands I left Peter over night for the first time. (!!!) I think it was good for everyone. Stefan and I took a train to Paris for three days and two nights while Peter stayed behind to play with Stefan's parents. 

These first two pictures are from Versailles - we got there early, but didn't pay to go inside. We walked the gardens and I loved it and Stefan was a great photographer. But we forgot the brand new LDS temple was really close by! I wanted to go see it, but honestly didn't think about it until we were on the train back into the city.

But the first night we were there.. woof. We were having a rough time finding our way around, we had a boat tour scheduled soon, and we were starving. We ended up stumbling into this pizza place where the owner - the cutest, shortest, old Italian man - spoke absolutely no English. After a few minutes we were able to order a pizza and explain we needed it to go because we were in a hurry. We sat down at a table to wait, and the owner brought out two glasses of wine. He was giving Stefan this look that said "oooh, something special for you and your ladyyyy!" and waved his hands to tell us it was his treat. We smiled and thanked him without even attempting to explain to him we don't drink alcohol, then after he walked away Stefan told me to pour the wine into my water bottle. We didn't want the owner to think we weren't grateful - he was so sweet! So I did, and the water bottle smelled pretty badly when I finally remembered to dump it out in the morning. 

We took the pizza down to this little grassy park area on the bank of the river to eat while we waited for our boat, but we didn't last long. Stefan stopped mid-bite to tell me we needed to leave, but he wouldn't say why. After I bugged him about it enough he finally told me there were rats everywhere. I cannot cannot cannot do rats. Especially big fat ones coming after my pizza crumbs. We moved, but it was hard to get away from them! There were so many! Gross gross gross gross gross. But the pizza was really good, and the boat tour was a lot of fun.

We went to the Eiffel Tower, but didn't go up.. honestly because our feet were really tired. There was also a lot of construction going on around it, and the entire field right next to it was fenced off. So we didn't stay long, but I did love seeing it.

I also loved Notre Dame. We went all the way to the top and unintentionally stuck with this tour guide who we thought was the standard, free guide, but was actually paid for by someone else.. he was really good! I loved the history and the view from the top and just everything was really cool.

Our favorite evening was when we went to this jazz club our friend recommended. We sipped hot chocolate and read our books and listened to the live jazz. I felt cooler than I am, but I also felt really content and happy. It was a nice way to slow down and experience something very Parisian, something kind of off the beaten path that we never would have thought to do or found on our own. We both really loved it.

We stopped at lots of great bakeries, but honestly didn't have many great meals. The only really good meal I can remember was the steak and frites places that ended up being expensive, but one of Stefan's favorite meals ever. I barely used any French while we were there, but resolved to refresh more if I ever go back. Paris is one of those places I always heard so much about while growing up - in movies, in history, in studying French in school.. it was kind of surreal to actually be there. Stefan even said he liked it more than he expected to, so hopefully we do go back someday!

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