Posted on January 2nd, 2016
So this was the first time I have traveled alone and so naturally I was quite scared. The goodbyes at the airport with my parents and brother were incredibly sad and it was so difficult to realise that they wouldn’t be there to catch me every time I fall for the next year.
The flight to Dubai was good. I sat next to a lovely young lady who I could chat to. She was very motherly and helpful too, setting me completely at ease. I then arrived in Dubai and had to find my gate. It ended up being a lot further than I had originally thought and even had to take a train through the airport to get there. But I got there and boarded my flight to Paris in plenty of time. This flight was an A380 airbus which is a double-decker MASSIVE airplane. It was so luxurious and beautiful.
Then upon landing I crossed the first very scary bit for me: catching 2 trains from the airport to the home of the family’s Mamie (granny). It was difficult with my big bag and I got myself into a bit of a fluster but all went smoothly. I couldn’t have been more relieved to be picked up by the family from the train station!
All that could be done after those very long hours of sleepless travel was have a good night’s sleep. I then woke up to this absolutely gorgeous sunrise.
This was the day of Mamie’s 80th birthday and so to celebrate we began our outing at the Theatre Mogador where we watched Cats. It was all in French so I can’t say that I understood much of the story line, but the dancing, singing, costumes and set were all incredible.
Next we took a walk through Paris by night. Wow it was beautiful! The streets were bustling with people dressed in all of the winter woolies (that’s something I find funny here: it’s really not that cold but still everyone you see in the street is nestled in their thick coat, scarf, beanie, gloves and every building is heated to the temperature of like an oven). I tried some roasted chestnuts from a street vendor. They are delicious!
On our walk through Paris we saw The Opera, the Louvre, the ‘little’ Arc du Triomphe (not the real one), the Concorde, Champs-Élysées (now filled with many Christmas markets), the Pont Alexandre and of course the Eiffel Tower glistening upon the Seine. Absolutely breathtaking! I now understand why it’s called the city of lights!
Then it was time for dinner: a cruise along the Seine with a true fine dining experience. And my was it fine! I honestly felt like royalty. It’s the perfect way to see all of the sites by night. It was a proper French meal starting with escargots pastries, seared tuna, veal loin, cheese and bread and then chocolate tart. Very rich, but very delicious.
It was an incredible evening and such a privilege to enjoy Paris with such class!