She Says… J’Adore

Ahhh, the city of champagne. Err, I mean love. Though for me it was a bit more of the former.

My trip was lovely. The flights were on time and I thoroughly enjoyed flying solo. Both ways there was a toddler across the aisle from me (both of whom, thankfully, slept very soundly for almost the entire flight) which made me miss Owen a tiny bit, but mostly served as a reminder that traveling alone is waaaaaaaay easier than traveling with a wee one.

Luxembourg Gardens

Arc de Triomphe

Once in Paris I walked. I walked and walked and walked and took in the sights and sounds and smells and tastes (nutella crepes, anyone?). I opened my map, circled a spot and just… walked. Although traveling alone is a little anticlimactic (no one to share the loveliness with), it can be incredibly liberating and surprisingly calm. On the first day I arrived at 8:45am after getting about 1.5 hours of sleep on the plane (not taking a sleeping pill was a bad idea!) and I walked straight until my first work meeting at 4pm. Good thing I brought comfy shoes.

Place du Carrousel (in front of the Louvre)

The Louvre

And when I got hungry? I ate. Boy, did I eat. Everything tastes better in Paris. The bread, the cheese, the chocolate, the wine, the champagne. Oh yeah, and some of the vegetables too. But mostly the cheese.

Crepe in the Jardin des Tuileries

Eiffel Tower

I figured out the Metro, despite an embarrassing lack of knowledge of the French language. This accomplishment made me ridiculously more excited than I should have been. But hey, pretending to be a local is fun!

Approaching Sacre Coeur

Sacre Coeur

View from Sacre Coeur

I did my best to avoid the leering men. Seriously, some European men seem to have quite the radar for a young woman traveling alone. Some of my encounters were innocent enough (a young Frenchman who told me, while kissing my hand, “You must be from America — your smile is more beautiful than anyone in Paris!”), but some were downright creepy (the guy on the Metro who stood pressed up against me muttering in French and breathing down my neck).

Notre Dame

Pont Saint-Michel

I skyped with Benjamin and Owen every night before bed. I would be in my hotel room, warm and sleepy from the wine I had with dinner, or still enjoying my chocolate crepe from the walk home; they would be just getting home from daycare. The first time we chatted, Owen cried and reached for the screen like he was trying to hug me, whimpering, “Hold you, Mommy”. It just about broke my heart. But after that he realized that I was in the computer and by the last day he couldn’t have cared less that he was chatting with me. It was awesome, because it meant he was totally fine at home without me. Which he was.

Centre Pompidou

Street Crepes in the Latin Quarter

All in all a successful trip. J’adore Paris! Now to dig through the mountains of emails that amassed while I was away…

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8 responses to “She Says… J’Adore

  1. Thanks for sharing! Sounds like you made the MOST of it & not being too afraid of venturing out on your own! Decent pics. from your I-phone! Were you able to have anyone take a pic. of you though, with some of the wonderful backdrops of Paris? I bet that those crepes tasted like heaven. Delish!! Glad you had a safe trip to/from! Welcome back to the U.S.!

  2. looks amazing! I know what you mean about traveling alone. I travel a lot for work too (domestically unfortunately) and always find myself wishing my husband or someone was there to explore and share it with me. But, I guess it’s better than sitting behind a desk 9-5 and not getting to travel at all!

  3. I am so envious! I lived in Paris for 2 years and miss it so much!! I miss everything – the noise, the quiet, the food!, the wine, the gardens, the concrete, the architecture, the Metro, the walking, the music, the language, the art, the food (did I already say that?).

    Glad you got a chance to walk around and enjoy it. When friends of mine travel to Paris I always send them on long walks instead of to tourist destinations. Maybe they won’t see the Mona Lisa but they’ll get so much more out of the city.

    Anyway, thanks for posting your pictures. Enjoy being home with your boys!

  4. I bet if you walked that much in Boston, the food would taste better here too 🙂

    My husband grew up in Europe, so he doesn’t get excited about visiting, but I’ve never been so I’m going to have to drag him there so he can translate for me!

  5. therapeuticbaking

    I can imagine that being away from Owen must have been very difficult but…what an amazing job you have to take you to Paris!!! You lucky gal you. I have been to Paris twice–first time I ran around like crazy to see everything and the second time I went ONLY to eat my way through the city. It is a fabulous place and one that I know I will visit again.

    It must have been such a relief though to finally be home and give Owen a big hug. I remember the first time I was away from my son for a long time–that first hug from him was the best and made everything better again.

  6. …er, not sure why that didn’t work out but the last comment by “therapeutic baking” was actually made by Meredith!

  7. What lovely photos!

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