Thursday, September 17, 2009

Paris, France - Day 8

Today was another great day. I woke up at 10 am and Dariush had already left. I immediately began packing my bags and checked out by 11am. I had the guy at the front desk hold my bags while I ran a few errands and just hung out in Paris for a few hours by myself before heading to the airport (flight left @ 7pm). In the picture on the right, our room was the window where the guy is walking. As you can see, we had "front row seats" to the Paris street life. We heard everything from here. If I was with Jennifer or my girls I would have been pretty upset, but it was perfect or this trip. Dariush and I really only used our room to keep our luggage in and then to sleep at night. Therefore, it was perfect!

From the hotel, I walked up a small little cobble stoned street that was full of souvenir shops and stopped at a little place to order a chocolate crepe. My sister said it's one of her favorite things in Paris and (sorry sis), I hadn't had one since I've been here yet. I bought it along with a piping hot cup of "American" coffee and walked up to a small little park beneath the Sacre Couere. I found a bench and sat there for almost 45 minutes watching the tourists snap photos and keeping a close eye on the pigeons so that I didn't get pooped on. The crepe was amazing and the coffee was pretty good too. Though, I can't wait to get back to my Bunn coffee maker. I'm sure it misses me too. :)

From the Sacre Couere, I ran a few errands around my area and then bought 3 metro tickets. I got a ticket to the airport, and then two one-way tickets inside "Zones 1 & 2" (which is everything within the main part of Paris really). The reason for the two 1 way tickets was so that I could go visit my buddy, Jim. :)

I hopped on the metro and got off at Pere Lachaise. I had totally forgot how big this place was. I never remembered it being this enourmous the last time I was here (~15 years ago). It is amazing to think that such a huge and beautiful place can be preserved and peaceful inside the busy streets of Paris. I walked very slow and was in no hurry. I took about 50 pictures, and just killed time for the most part. Instead of trying to explain how huge it was, allow me to just do a photo link to my online web album: Pere Lachaise

From Pere Lachaise, I headed back to my exit and grabbed a quick bite of lunch before heading out to Carles De Gaulle international airport. I sat out on the street of course and took my time to enjoy my last bite to eat in Paris. It was great and I actually saw one of the drunk russian chicks while sitting there. I told her goodbye and that I was leaving today.

After I finished my lunch I headed back to my hotel and got my bags so that I could make my way to the airport. It's not fun carrying so much luggage through the busy metro system. My suite case was very heavy and I had to literally pick it up to carry it up and down the steps through the various metro systems. In order to get to Charles de Gaulle, I had to go through Gare du Nord and ended up missing my exit at one point. I didn't mind though because I knew that I left in plenty of time, so I casually went all the way to the end of RER B and turned fixed my problem at Aulnay-sous-Bois.

By the time I got to Charles de Gaulle, it was about 5:30 and my flight didn't leave until 7pm. I had plenty of time to chill, so I did just that.

I was actually looking forward to my departing flight today. It has been pretty hard to keep it from slipping on my blog, but I wasn't going back to Val D'Europe to work. I was actually waiting on a flight to Bucharest, Romania to visit my other brothers from other mothers: Volli and Yiorgo. We are all planning to spend the weekend together at Volli's house.

Who is Volli and Yiorgo you ask? Well, Yiorgo was an exchange student from Larissa, Greece that lived with me during my senior year of high school, and Volli was an exchange student from Hamburg, Germany (oops, I think) that lived across the street from us that same year. We hung out on the front porch of Day Ave every night and we created a pretty tight bond that year. We were all very different from one another in every way, but it worked. They have been very close friends ever since and actually visit each other pretty regularly.

Another great story about these two is that they are who introduced Jennifer and I to one another my senior year. Volli and Yiorgo were friends with Jennifer and her friend, Crystal. One day they were all hanging out in the basement of my house and I had come home to get something out of the basement and saw her down there. I thought she was cute, and apparently she thought I was cute too... The rest is history. There's actually a full write up on our website that tells the whole story.

So, when I got off the plane in Bucharest, Volli and Yiorgos were waiting for me. No words were said, and we immediately just started laughing out loud because we couldn't believe we were all together again. I snapped a horrible picture, but I'll use it anyway because it shows exactly how excited we were to see each other. The drive back to Volli's house was a lot of fun. We each took turns asking questions and answering about various things that have happened over the last 10 or so years; it was just like old times. When we got to Volli's place, he had a dish of some authentic Romanian dinner waiting on me. It was 11:30, but I had no problem eating it. It was delicious! We of course drank a few beers and ended up talking until about 1:30 am.

I'm very excited to spend the weekend here in Romania with my two other foreign brothers. It's like having the "gang" back together again. We have a full weekend of beer drinking and fun ahead of us and it's gonna be a blast! Be sure to check in tomorrow to see what we get into...

Oh yeah, as you can imagine, the title of the series will change tomorrow, so don't be alarmed. :P

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