31 July 2006

paris etc.

Well hello everyone!

I have been swept up in the middle of a very rushed, but wonderful trip. Although Brian got a chance to post the other day, I was falling asleep at that point and had to go to bed.

So here I am now, in Florence, but Iàm going to back up to the city of lights...

Paris was simply: everything I ever imagined it might be in terms of wonder, beauty etc, except multiplied by at least 10. I caught a glimpse of it in a Mariah CArey video yesterday and couldnt believe I had been there. The first day included a trek up the Eiffel tower in the sweltering heat to overlook the city, visiting Trocadero and the Champs Elysees and feeling very grubby in my backpacker clothes amongst Louis Vuitton, LaCoste et al (but still wandering around Sephora for at least an hour, sampling everything), wandering around the city itself, a night carnival with lemon slushies, checking out Montparnasse, and then finding our way back to the Eiffel tower just before midnight. There were hundreds of people drinking wine and chilling at the base of the tower until, at exactly midnight, the sprinkler systems went off and soaked us all. It was very, very refreshing.

The second day we visited the Louvre (again in the HEAT) and saw all the obligitoires and all my art history faves. We wandered for most of the day, taking in more sights than my mind could handle, ate dinner at a cheap but amazing restaurant in the Latin quarter, then got a bottle of wine and sat by the Seine just by Notre Dame, beside some French girls singing along to their iPods.

The third day started with an excursion to Versailles (just the gardens, the line was too big for inside), where we looked at a million fountains and were serenaded by period music coming from somewhere...? Later on we took the Metro to Montmarte and I reveled in the artsiness. After seeing the gleaming white glory of Sacre coeur (and me almost crying when I saw the overview of Paris, it was embarassing), we walked down the hill and looked at Moulin Rouge. There was no way in hell to go in, as tickets cost about $200. Another day, perhaps? At night we had another simple French meal (mine was not that great, to be honest, just greasy chicken leg...ew) and then walked back to the hostel. It was indescribably awesome.

A quick stop in Bruxelles on the way to Amsterdam, which basically entailed eating waffles smothered in chocolate (I have already realized this trip is essentially based on food)and then continued on to Amsterdam.

It was a cool experience, but not really my scene. The red light district was novel, but I was pretty much the only girl crusing the canal sides. The place is a trap for people with munchies, and the food is accordingly gross. But I did try absinthe, although Iàm not certain if it was real. It was cool, and aesthetically pleasing, but tasted like burning, flaming green hell when I drank it. We also saw the Anne Frank House, which in my opinion was the most interesting part of this city. Basically we just avoided our hostel full of weirdos for as long as possible.

When we arrived in Munich, the fun really began. At night we had a great time going out with some Californians we met, to the oldest Bier haus in the world and drinking 1 litre beers, and then to an Irish pub. In the day we visited English Park and let ourselves be hurtled down a raging river. It was a near death experience, yes, but how exhilirating! We eventually took a slower river that was much more relaxing, except one had to watch out for the many nude bathers standing in the middle of the stream. Didnt want to float backwards after I almost had a collision.

Bern, Switzerland also had a river, though this one was much water and more majestic. It was a surreal and amazing moment to float down that gorgeous river, just like a fish.

More to come soon. Switzerland was beautiful, and Italy...well, that is for the next post. Hope you are all wee


Leslie said...

What an awesome adventure my darling!
Miss you

Erin said...

Sounds beautiful Dallas! I was in Italy this past weekend, in Rome, and it was amazing. Get yourself there if you can, the Vatican City is unbelievable. I'm in Prague next weekend (Berlin as I write this). You guys should take a (major) detour and join me! Haha.

Take care!


invitationinside said...

can i just say one word "JEALOUS!" haha...well glad to hear you are having afabulous time! miss ya xoxox

Mandy said...

Curow!!! Your having an amazing time and I hate you for it!! Whats with everyone going to far off places and having crazy adventures?? I want one too:( But I'm so happy for ya cause I know your lovin it over there and your summer has been so intersting! I'm still gunna drill you for details and stories when I see you. Ok woman I miss ya and love ya!

ETC'd said...

this all sounds oh-so-perfect

i'm glad you had the opportunity to take this trip

**excited for the next post!!!

Gillian Edworthy said...

dallas! how i miss hearing about your crazy life adventures in person! haha,
your trip sounds amazing - and its making me excited for my turn: tenatively June, July and part of Aug 2007!!!

I'm looking forward to hearing about Italy and Switzerland (make sure to check out Zurich - its beautiful and the land of Edworthy Nannies! hehe)

cheers dudette
miss yan and love yah!

Erik Mann said...

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Matt Larkin said...

Wow, you're making me hungry. And curious about finally doing the Europe thing. You should be a travel agent.

Glad you're having a blast! Hopefully I'll see you soon. If you guys come to London (the crappy one you may encounter months from now, not the great one you currently have easy access to) you obviously have a place to stay if you need one.

Cheers and caw-caw,


Buffy said...

All of my trips are essentially based on food.

And drink.

Mostly drink.

Sounds like you had an excellent holiday!