Man I can't believe it, time has really flown. We have only one week (and a half) left of school, my French language final is this Friday, and in 10 days it's bye bye Paris. I can't believe we've been here for almost a month already. I've met some really interesting people here, kinda sucks I'm probably never going to see any of them again (except for this one girl who has told me that she can't wait to come to the rodeo in Oregon - haha).
I guess I haven't updated for almost a week - woops. Not like anybody reads this other than my mom anyway. Hi Lorna. We had a pretty uneventful weekend in Paris - it was our first legitimately free weekend with no API excursions or plans to spend however we wanted, figures we wouldn't do anything spectacular. Here are the promised pictures from the Eiffel Tower visit on Thursday:
View from the middle/top.
Friday a group of us went to this incredibly bizarre club on a boat called Batofar. I actually read a few things about it after we went and it's pretty popular, and they play house/dubsteppy music which is kind of cool. We walked over an hour (basically halfway across Paris) to get there at 1 in the morning (and yes mom, don't worry, we had men with us) but it was so worth it. Ended up staying out til the 630am Metro and coming home and sleeping away the better part of my Saturday afternoon.
Well, I guess that's what Batofar looks like. Didn't spend a ton of time staring at the outside.
Holly, myself & Frank juuust hanging out outside the boat at 6:00am.
Saturday was incredibly uneventful, slept til almost 5 in the afternoon (something I haven't done since I had mono, and before that... maybe never), then woke up and tried to work on some homework for Monday but was pretty unsuccessful. Sunday in the morning a group of girls went to the outdoor markets up near Porte de Clignancourt (on the exact opposite periphery of Paris from where we live). It was basically a huge outdoor flea market plus different sections for different vendors, lots of touristy stuff, some weird French gangster area, the like. Spent a few hours there and then went to Musee Jean Moulin (a WW2 memorial type of museum) with two girls from API for a few hours, took us about an hour to actually find the museum because everything in Paris is fully un-findable as far as I'm concerned! It was a pretty cool museum, a bit strange to me because the French didn't even play a large role in WW2 but whatever, Vive la France. I also decided that is my catch phrase when I'm not sure what to say, but need to end a sentence about France.
WW2 poster from the Musee Jean Moulin.
Monday was back to class for everybody after a weekend that felt (at least to me) incredibly long. After class we went to check out this great historical bookstore called Shakespeare and Company, located right across the Seine from the Notre Dame. This was hands down the best bookstore I've ever been in. The history is great, too. The bookstore was started in the 1950's by a guy named George Whitman (an American) who was studying at the Sorbonne in Paris at the time. The shop began as a small library/bookstore run out of Whitman's home, and has since blossomed into an incredibly popular and famous bookstore. Whitman housed authors and aspiring novelists in his little shop and allowed them to live and work there (usually for free). There's a hallway full of portraits of famous authors who have studied and stayed there over the years since it's creation leading upstairs to a bunch of reading rooms, a piano room, and a small typewriter station. To sum it up: this place was amazing. I could live there, easily.
Front door to Shakespeare & Company
Precioussss little reading room upstairs
After a few hours at Shakespeare I headed home to nap and probably facebook or something equally lame for a little while before figuring out dinner. Abby had read in some French travel book about the "best falafel in Paris" while she was in London, so we decided to go check it out and form our professional falafel opinion as to whether it was truly the best or not. Turns out it was - it was amazing actually. The falafel was ACTUALLY on pita, not a freaking baguette - ugh the French ruin everything. We traipsed around the Marais for a bit after getting our falafel, obviously got some gelato because we just can't stop eating, then headed home.
The enormous line in front of the falafel place.
Brain. Twins. Abby & I with our unplanned matching food - Heineken & mint ice cream, winning combo.
Tuesday (yesterday) was another long day at the Catho. French language class from 9-12, a 2 hour break for lunch at our horrendous cafeteria (Crous, the place we have a billion dollars to spend on cards but can't bring ourselves to actually spend there - vomit), then back to the Catho for French oral class from 2-5. It was HOT yesterday too, I think it got back up to 90 again - can't say I miss that weather at all. Came home from class around 6:00pm and sat on my bed with Abby and ate roughly ten pounds of Nutella while watching America's Next Top Model - we're so French. That evening some girls decided to go check out this club called Le Duplex, because on Tuesday nights they let international students in for free. So we get all the way there (it's literally all the way across Paris) before 12:30 and the bouncer wouldn't let Cara and me in because we were "with" some French dudes, meaning we were standing by them in line and the bouncers didn't want any more French boys inside. Major bust of a night, I ripped up their flyer and threw it at the ugly bouncer and we took a cab home. Classy, I'm aware.
Us girls on the Metro headed to "the claaaab" (one of the girls on our trip has a very thick accent and when she says 'the club' it sounds like that)
Today (Wednesday) I woke up feeling pretty sick, sore throat and a headache, so I decided to stay in bed and missed my morning class which is alright because my teacher luh-uhvs me and we had a substitute professor today anyway. Went to the disgusting cafeteria and had chicken and rice (which ended up being more like 90% pepper 10% rice), almost barfed, then went to check out the Pere-Lachaise by myself. I think that's probably one of the best decisions I've made so far on this trip, sight seeing alone is kind of nice because you can go at your own pace (mine = faster than half of the world's, I think) and you can see exactly what you want to and nothing you don't want to! It was great. The Pere-Lachaise is really cool, I tried navigating it without a map which was difficult but I still found some pretty cool graves. It's enormous too! I'm not sure exactly how large it is, but I walked for a little over an hour and still didn't cover the grounds (at least I don't think I did).
Frederick Chopin's grave site.
Now we're off to Rue de Rivoli (which we've been calling Ravioli) to do some more sight seeing and basically just get our butts OUT of the FEU! Thanks for readin :)