Casa’s Blog

A Life Abroad

I’m leaving for Paris, no I don’t think that I’ll see you. I’m leaving for Paris, no I don’t think that I need to. So I’m leaving for Paris, won’t you try to take care of yourself?

Bonjour from Paris people!

After finally getting some well needed sleep in Ham I was once again off travelling.  I made my way to St Pancras and had my first ride of the Eurostar to Paris.  The immigration, boarding and the like are well organised and the train station is new and clean but besides that it is basically a similar train journey to the rest I have had around Europe and in North America.  It just spent a fair bit of time in a very long tunnel and your ears pop a little bit because of the speed, etc.

Arriving in Paris at the main train station was easy enough but I struggled at first to find the hostel. The directions included with the booking could have been a little more descriptive but eventually I did find my way to the Vintage Hostel.  It is in a good location (right near the train station), really clean and even has a few fancy bits worthy of note such as a marble staircase and nice lounge downstairs.  From the looks of it, it is an old converted hotel…which makes for a nice hostel.

What was weird though was as I was in a tired state checking in, I was greeted with a “you dude!  What are the chances?” from the guy in front of me, in a strong New Jersey accent.  I was shocked at first but there was Ryan.  He was one of the guys I went out with in Munich and had a great time drinking beer and having shots with (for the record the shots were Blue Curacao, Malibu, Vodka and a dash of Orange Juice.  I forgot to ask what they were…but Ryan did).  It turns out that Ryan and Mikey were leaving in the morning but just happened to run in to me so I had a friendly face, or two to be accurate, to spend my first night in Paris with.

We decided to grab some dinner and as we were in Paris, and they hadn’t had a proper French dinner, on the recommendation of the hostel receptionist we made our way to a local french cafe.  It was a lovely place with really nice staff. For 15 Euros each we got a entree and main and two glasses of the house red.  The wine was nice and so was my Quiche but by far the best part of the meal was my Steak Tartare main.  It was surprising how brilliant it was because I only ordered it so I could add something to my “weird stuff I have eaten” list as Steak Tartare is a raw mince meat patty thing.  It was amazing.  The texture didn’t seem raw and it was REALLY tasty.  Mikey even had a bit and was so surprised with how good it taste that he grabbed the recipe.  Raw beef = good eating!

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As the two guys were at the end of their time in Paris we then did something they suggest.  Just as the day was becoming a little dusk-like we headed up to Sacre Coeur Church which is on a hill just around the corner from the hostel.  Up to the top you get AMAZING views of Paris.  Especially with the light we had at this time of day it was such a beautiful view.  The buildings were so white and unique…it really doesn’t look like the other European cities which surprised me.  Up the top of the hill we had a beer, looked out over the view, avoided the dodgy African guys trying to scam you with a string on the finger trip and saw a guy who was the greatest freestyle footballer ever.  He was juggling and doing tricks I have never seen before or I thought possible.  All with ease and a good level of showmanship.  He even climbed up a lamppost to the top…WHILE BALANCING A SOCCER BALL ON HIS FOREHEAD!  Now that is a skill!

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With that I said goodbye and good night to my american friends and I was off to bed.  I have a lot to do in Paris so I need to make sure I am well rested.

July 10, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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