day two

we arrive in paris, enfin
View from our hotel room
The view from our hotel room.
John and three empty chairs.
Luxemborg Gardens.
Twenty franc note.
complimentary matches
Compliments of the Hotel Buci Latin.









John and Leslie finally arrived in Paris early on Saturday with plenty of time to kill. Their trip had been quick and uneventful with no delays. Both of them tried to sleep on the plane, but to no avail. When they arrived, they took a cab, from the nearly empty airport, directly to the hotel to unpack. The Hotel Buci Latin was on le rue de Buci, right off of the Boulevard Saint Germain, on the Left Bank of Paris.

After unpacking and freshening up, the pair set out to do the most important thing anyone can do while in Paris, eat. They wandered down St. Germain to le Brasserie Lipp to have lunch. Leslie took one look at the menu and realized that she should have studied her vocabulary words before she left. She recognized only a few things on the menu. John remembered more of his French and helped her out. John ordered them a bottle of Sancerre and a bottle of Badoit water so they stay "hydrated". Leslie admitted to John that she hadn't understood a word the waiter said. He promised to do all the talking from now on, and so they settled in to enjoy their first superb meal in Paris.
Brasserie Lipp
After lunch, it was time to get in a little sightseeing. Leslie's feet were a little swollen from the plane ride, so the usually comfortable shoes were giving her some problems. They decided to go take a look at le Jardin de Luxemborg, but headed off in the wrong direction at first. They finally got themselves sorted out and in the right direction and were soon there. The gardens were blooming nicely and everything was peaceful and beautiful. Leslie spotted a Cyber Cafe on the way to the gardens and made a mental note, because she had already planned on checking her email while away. Sad, really.

Eventually they started to wander back towards the hotel and passed the Cathedral of St. Sulpice and decided to go in. There was a wedding going on in the church, so they stopped to watch that for awhile. Earlier, while unpacking, Leslie had shoved some moleskin into her shoes to try to alleviate the pain of the shoes rubbing her heels. She took this opportunity to arrange them a little better while they sat and watched the wedding, as they had moved out of place. John just laughed and shook his head at her.

Finally bored with the wedding, rested and with moleskins back in place, they took a look at the few Delacroix's hanging around the church, but the light was very bad and they were difficult to see. They left the church and went across the street to the Fountain of the Four Bishops by Joachim Visconti, where folks were gathered about, picniking, playing ball and roller blading.

The pair were exhausted, having been awake for almost 26 hours, so they decided to go shopping for supplies while they still had a little energy left. The area around their hotel was replete with every kind of shop, selling every possible item a person could want. They picked up some bottled water and cookies and a few other creature comforts and went back to the hotel for a four hour nap.

John has a theory about overcoming jetlag that was never entirely clear to Leslie, but she followed along anyway. They were, apparently, to stay up as long as they could (26 + hours), then take a short nap (4 hours) then go out in the evening just like they would normally.

This they did. After the nap, the freshened up, changed their clothes, ate a few cookies and headed out to the Champs Elysees. John succumbed to Leslie, who wanted to backtrack first to the edge of the Seine to get a look at Notre Dame. Once she was satisfied that she had stared at the beautfiul scene long enough to burn it into her permanent memory, they caught a cab to les Rond Pont de Champs Elysees, and wandered around, soaking in the sights, sounds and smells of a Saturday night in Paris.

They had a fabulous meal in an outdoor cafe on the Champs Elysees with a view of the L'Arc de Triomphe. After their meal, they walked down the other side of le Champs Elysees, making sure to find Guerlain, where Leslie planned on doing some serious purchasing.

Once back on the Left Bank, they stopped at a little cafe on the Saint Germain and had a beer. Once again, Leslie didn't understand a word that the waiter said to her and she felt a little panicky about it all.

So John ordered for them both and then he settled down to explain the system of money that they were using. Leslie had a lot of questions, and since John had been to Paris before, he was able to fill her in on some of the little details.

By the time they wandered back to the hotel, got ready for bed, and wrote in their journals, it was 4:30 in the morning. Time for a little sleep.

day three