Paris was a jam-packed week – I’d been to Paris a few years ago, but my travel companion Ellin hadn’t been there for quite some time. It meants we had a lot of things to become re-acquainted with.
I’ll touch on a few highlights:
- A wonderful French dinner at La Chaumiere tucked away in the 15th arrondissement. It is run by talented chef Oliver Amestoy and his lovely Australian wife, Marie-Francoise. Besides his wonderful cooking, I was impressed with her timing. Everyone ordered at least three courses, and she was like a conductor, pacing the flow of dishes from the kitchen to each customer’s table without missing a beat.
- Our visit to the Musee d’Orsay was another highlight. In contrast to the Louvre, the d’Orsay is very unassuming, yet their collection of impressionist and post-impressionist works is formidable. It was breathtaking to be in a room of Van Gogh’s, Cezanne’s, Renoir’s, Monet’s, Manet’s or Gauguin’s work. A number of Paris museums were closed the week we were there, due to a public service strike. Others, such as the Musee d’Orsay opened an hour later. During our visit to the Orsay, there was an announcement that someone had left a package unattended, and staff told us that if the bag went unclaimed, they would have to evacuate the museum. Fortunately, the bag found it’s owner.
- Seeing the French Open Women’s Final at Roland-Garros – one of four Grand Slam Tennis Tournaments that take place each year. The women’s final took place the first full day we were in Paris, between Dinara Safina and Ana Ivanovic. We’d purchased our tickets through a ticket lottery run by the French Tennis Federation several months before leaving on our trip. The big hype that final weekend was for the men’s match the next day between Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer. Scalpers were hawking tickets at the gate – two tickets for 1,000 euros (roughly $1,600 US). What we didn’t know at the time was that Nadal would take the match in three sets and it would be over in less than two hours.
However, the real reason for this post is to tell you about www.travelblog.org – a free blogging service geared to travellers. It’s free to sign up, and your blogs can be public, private, or a combination of the two. (The combo option is in beta at the moment; if your blog is private, readers have to join Travel Blog to read them.) I’ve joined it to do a blog of our trip, and find it’s a fun way to connect with other travellers and bloggers who were in Paris at the same time. Travelblog also hosts a Travel Forum that includes any number of topics and lots of practical information if you scan the posts, and you can create your own personalized photo album to share with friends.
I’d love you to check out my blog at www.mytb.org/CJinParis and leave a comment.