Paris, France

Paris … where do I begin. Paris is a wonderful city with lots to see and experience. If the many famous sights and museums tire you out, and they will, then there is a wonderful cafe and park scene to help you relax and reflect on your day. Cafes serve anything from coffee and croissants to baguettes, steaks, and other dishes. The food in Paris is unbelievable. For nearly all of our lunches we would buy meat, cheese, and wine from the grocery store along with a fresh baguette from a nearby cafe and enjoy a picnic at one of the many beautiful parks.

Paris is an awesome city, but the rumors are true about Parisians – they aren’t friendly at all. Upon arriving at the train station, I attempted to ask the ticket attendant, in French, if she spoke English. She responded with silence and one of the dirtiest looks I’ve ever received. The language barrier was also somewhat difficult; we found ourselves pointing and counting with our fingers a lot. It was fun :).

We did all sorts of things: climbed the Notre Dam, visited the Eiffel Tower, visited the Arc de Triumph, went inside the Louvre, and ate in the Latin Quarter.

War story: We decided to check out the Sacre-Coeur, which is a large white church on a green hill. On our way up the green hill, we were all approached by a group of men. These men made us stop and grabbed our hands. They placed a string ring around each of our pinky fingers and proceeded to use the ring as an anchor to make a bracelet. I told the guy to stop, but he insisted that I needed it to enter the church. He was talking very fast while making the bracelet. While this was going on I was insanely worried that one of his buddies would try to pickpocket me, but to my relief there was no attempt. Instead the man asked for 10 euro once the bracelet was finished. I argued with him and told him that I didn’t even want the bracelet in the first story. I eventually agreed to give him five euro for the bracelet, but I only had a 50-euro bill. He took the bill and gave me change. As I continued walking up the hill with my silly, $7.50 bracelet, I realized that I only had two bills in my pocket. I took the bills out of my pocket and immediately realized the guy short-changed me and charged me 20 euro ($30). I was so furious I cut the bracelet off and threw it away. Money well spent. NOT.

Learn more about my Europe trip here.