Day 23 ~ Exploring Paris, Fun with friends & making new friends

Today was a fabulous day, exploring Paris and hanging out with Joy and some of her friends.

I started my day by getting lost in Paris, which I think is a prerequisite when you travel alone to a city where you don’t speak the language – so I got lost and then I found where I was supposed to go and picked up my Paris pass and decided to hop on the bus tour. The tour was lovely and it gave me a good overview of the city and kind of got me oriented as to where things actually were and how to get around. What I found was that Paris is a very walkable city and it’s not really all that big. After I did both loops of the bus tour, I decided just to wander around a bit and stumbled into a crêperie and had some crapes and they were delightful. They also did this lovely water with grenadine in it and it made me happy!

After lunch, I decided I might as well go ahead and do the Arc de Triumph so that I could see a view of Paris from up high. I went up all 284 spiral steps and was rewarded with a overly view of Paris. The view is very interesting, because it outlines the fact that Paris has had building regulations in place since it was redesigned that require all buildings to be less than five stories, or six stories to us Americans. What this means is that you can always see sky and the spires of churches and other landmark buildings that are taller throughout Paris.  I think it makes Paris have a uniquely interesting big city feel without skyscrapers.

They had a cool photography exhibit where this photographer had taken pictures of uniforms of soldiers from France and the composition of the pictures was very appropriate, and had a tone of remembrance.  While at the Arc, I got to see a part of the daily memorial ceremony honoring the tomb of the unknown soldier, which was pretty neat.

After the Arc de Triumph, I headed to the British Embassy to meet Joy and her friend Bethany for drinks in the embassy gardens – what a cool experience! Bethany, Joy and I had great conversations, good champagne and lots of laughs.

Well stopping by Bethany’s flat to get things to take to our next adventure, a house party hosted by another of Joy’s friends, and we discovered that Bethany and I shared a mutual love of Bourbon. (Bethany being the good Kentucky girl that she is had some on hand, so I got to have bourbon in Paris – if that’s not the perfect mixing of two worlds, I’m not sure what is!)

After that we set out and had a lovely time at Zoe’s party before coming home and crashing.

Also – just a side note: People in Paris apparently love a southern United States accent because in the past 24 hours I’ve had no less than 13 people say to me how much they love my accent.

Tomorrow is a new day, and adventures await!

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