Monday, April 9, 2012

Paris Vacation - Part 1

I was desperate to get out of Norway. The winter blues had gotten to me, and I needed a change of scenery.

We bought tickets to Paris before Christmas...sort of as our gift to each other, and sort of as a delayed honeymoon (since our 'honeymoon' was camping in Yosemite with both of our families and then moving to Norway - in my mind, that's not a honeymoon - but it was fun!)

We left early on Wednesday morning (the first flight to Amsterdam -where we had to change planes - left at 6:30 in the morning).

Upon arrival in Paris, we surprisingly bought the right tickets for a train that would get us into the heart of the city without any help. 

On the train:

(What a change from Bergen's immaculate and quiet Bybanen! This was old, loud, and kinda smelled like pee - as did many of the metro rides we took during our stay).

After dropping off our luggage at the hotel, we took a stroll around the neighborhood we stayed in (Saint Germain). It was lovely: beautiful boutiques, great restaurants, and loads of caf├ęs for people watching. 

(The only pictures of the neighborhood and the hotel.)

After our first meal and glass of wine, we went to the Galeries Lafayette - probably the most grand department store I've ever seen. There was an entire floor dedicated to women's shoes, which extended for what seemed like an entire city block. Sorry, no pictures of that (although it was amazing)...but here are some other pictures from that incredible place: 

Grandma told me the cosmetics department was amazing...she wasn't lying!  
Isn't it gorgeous? I love the dome!

One more from the first floor: 

After checking out almost every floor, we headed up to the roof. I read that the view was something you shouldn't miss, so we went up, happy to have some fresh air and open space away from the crowds. 

The view was incredible. 

By this time, we were exhausted. We had been on two flights, a train, in a cab, wandering around a neighborhood, on the metro, and exploring the expansive Galeries LaFayette. We sat down for some ice cream (or is it gelato? Not sure)...which was amazing (but we had to guess what the flavors were since we obviously can't speak or read French and no one really seems to want to clue us in with English...which was to be expected, I suppose).

My selection: strawberry and vanilla, complete with a chocolate cookie!

Stian's choice: chocolate, caramel, and vanilla. Beautiful! 

We bought a phrase book so we could practice a few phrases during our stay (which were not received so well because we're both pretty terrible with French and probably should have worked on it before we left). 

Stian practicing some random phrases. :) 

It was a great first day. Dinner that night was mediocre, but we had some great wine and wonderful desserts. The best part? It only got better from there.

Still to come: a trip to Versailles, dinner with new foods, and a night on the town with the locals. Stay tuned! 

1 comment:

  1. How adorable are you two? Paris looks lovely! - Sheila