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Jo & Danielle Paris Adventure ~ Day 1, May 19

Hi all, I am back home safe and sound! I didn't blog live this time because it was such a short trip and I just couldn't take the time to report on our days properly. I kind of wish I had though, because I remember so much more detail when I write everything down on a daily basis. Oh well, I'll give it my best shot........

Our flight from Montreal was smooth and uneventful. Danielle was very nervous about her first flight, but soon realized that being on a plane is mostly very boring. We tried to sleep but we were both too excited to get more than a few minutes here and there. Our driver from Inter Shuttle was waiting for us as we exited Terminal 3 and drove us expertly to our little VIP studio on rue Marie Stuart, right off rue Montorgeuil. (This is the 3rd time we have used Inter Shuttle and we have been delighted with the service. I know there's cheaper ways to get into Paris, but coming off a trans-Atlantic night flight, exhausted and anxious to get to your lodging, and then having a driver waiting for you, take your bags and whisk you to your destination is priceless to me. We will use them again in September.)

The studio is tiny, about 28 square meters, but they have used the space very well. There is a very comfortable double bed in a corner off the washroom and a fold out futon that Danielle said was also comfortable. Across from the futon is the kitchen with every convenience you would need ~ stove, fridge, microwave, dishwasher, washer/dryer, coffee maker, and air conditioning! Plenty of dishes, glasses, utensils, etc. We had free wifi and phone calls to Canada. There was a flat screen TV and DVD/CD player (both of which never got turned on). A small square table with 3 chairs, a very clean bathroom with shower, sink, toilet and heated towel bars and a large armoire type area to put our luggage and hang our clothes. The only thing really missing was drawers for our clothing, but we emptied one of the kitchen drawers and one of the bathroom drawers and made do. We felt very safe in the building, which had 2 access code entries before accessing the apartment building itself and then a triple bolt lock on our door. There was only one window looking out into an enclosed courtyard with an airshaft, so we just kept it closed and used the air conditioning. This was my first time using VIP but everything went smoothly, I received my door key in the mail about 2 week before we left, the apartment was spotless when we got there, everything worked fine and I wouldn't hesitate to use them again.

Here is the link for the apartment:
http://www.vacationinparis.com/apts/id_179.htm

Once we unpacked and checked everything out, we walked 30 seconds and were on rue Montorgeuil, a wonderful market street in the 2nd. We were about 45 seconds from the famous Strohrer bakery but there are at least 4 more wonderful bakeries in a 3 block span, along with cheese shops, butchers, fish mongers, cafes, restaurants, chocolate shops, ATM machines, little supermarkets, hardware store, even a Starbucks (which we never went to, of course!!). We strolled slowly and enjoyed the sights, sounds and smells of Paris. Danielle was besides herself and my great pleasure was seeing how happy she was to finally be here. I had decided before we left that we would have lunch at Les Petit Carreaux since it was so close to our apartment and Den and I had had such a great lunch here last May. We got a great corner table on the terrace and ordered some rose to toast our arrival in Paris. Danielle had the Caesar salad with a poached egg on top and mounds of shaved parmesan sprinkled all over the salad and I had the same lunch as last year, the planche campagnarde ~ mounds of Cerrano ham, a huge disk of melted brie, crunchy potato wedges and a very fresh simple green salad. Both dishes were delicious and although we ate and ate, we still left food on our humongous plates. We spoke with our table neighbours ~ 4 ladies out for lunch, 3 sisters (2 who live in Brazil and one in Florida) and the niece living in Paris who was showing them around. After lunch, we went to get some provisions for the apartment (Danielle was dying to try the butter and the yogourt) and made our way back to the apartment for a nap. We had been awake about 36 hours by that time and we both fell asleep in about 1 minute.

I had signed us up for the David Lebovitz (hereafter known as the Leib) booksigning at WH Smith at 7pm. We both struggled to wake up around 5:30, freshened ourselves up with a quick shower and were off to meet the Leib. I guided Danielle down rue Etienne Marcel towards the Palais Royale, with a small detour so she could see the Galerie Vivienne and the Grand Colbert restaurant. We walked slowly down Rivoli, enjoying the sunshine and the people watching on this very busy street. Once at the bookstore, we bought the Leib's new cookbook Ready for Dessert and waited for the event to start. There were over 100 people there and David was very witty, funny and patient with everyone, even the strange woman who made a point of telling him she didn't really follow his blog but wanted to know what non-stick cook pans were (!). Once we got our books signed, we walked slowly back to the apartment, going a different route so Danielle could see as many different parts of Paris as possible in such a short time. We wandered down little tiny streets and enjoyed looking at everyone sitting and drinking and eating at the numerous terraces along the way, everyone finally enjoying a warm, sunny Paris spring evening.

We got back to our apartment a little before 10pm, had a simple supper of baguette, cheese, wonderful strawerries and chocolat and were in bed soon after. A successful first day in my favourite city!

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on May 25, 2010 7:38 PM.

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