Today I want to talk about our recent trip to Paris. I think this goes down as the best Christmas present from the hubs to date, a long weekend in Paris in the springtime? Yes PLEASE!
A couple of months ago as I was looking at housing options I settled on trying airbnb.com for the first time, because renting an apartment sounded like a good idea. I've heard from a few people the Airbnb was a reputable website, and I have to say I was extremely satisfied with the way it turned out. We stayed in a little rooftop apartment in the 6th arr., right smack dab in the middle of a gorgeous, safe, and ehrm, expensive part of town. The building was typical Parisian turn of the century grandeur, with the circular marble staircase with what I can only imagine are palatial apartments on every floor. I assume that the rooftop apartments were converted from either attic space or maids quarters at a later date, so the place we stayed in was very humble but perfect for our needs. Here's the link to the place we stayed if anyone is traveling to Paris, Johan and I would absolutely stay there again.
Plus the store in the ground floor of the apartment sold Swedish goods. It's like the apartment was meant for us.
Paris was a new city for Johan but I'd been there before, and due to Johan's traveling style this meant that we were able to just wander around the city and soak up the feel of it, while seeking out delicious food. (I definitely like to see the touristy, historical sights in new cities, but I'd already seen most of them in Paris.) We did do some touristy things though. I really wanted to go back to Sacré-Cœur as I think it is the most beautiful church I've seen thus far. It was a Sunday and they were holding a service while we were there, but they oddly enough allowed tourists to walk through the building while it was going on. I think that had I been sitting in the congregation I would have found it very off-putting to have a bunch of people walking around, but I was glad for the chance. I even got to hear a trio of nuns sing a beautiful piece! It's not every day one gets to experience that...
We also paid to go down into the crypts and go up in the tower. I could have not done the crypts again and been happy, but the tower was new to the both of us and I'm so glad we went up! I think the view from the top of Sacré-Cœur is better than the view from the Eiffel Tower... which we also walked up. We got a lot of excersize over the course of one weekend.
Sunday was absolutely gorgeous, first day in a skirt and tank top for 2013! Besides seeing Sacré-Cœur, walking up the Eiffel Tower, and touring Notre Dame, we wandered for hours along the Seine just enjoying the view and the feel of the sun on our skin.
Now, living in Scandinavia has taught me the wonderfulness of a spontaneous barbeque in a park on a nice day, but Parisians have taken that tradition and classed it up a notch or two. We're talking crockery, wine, and a plethora of different types of food. Oh what I wouldn't have given to be a guest at one of the picnics!
One thing we weren't expecting was how expensive it was. It was Norwegian prices everywhere! I didn't think Paris was going to be cheap, but I hoped for a small break from our normal. But to be fair, we were in the touristy part of the city. One night, on a tip from a friend, we headed a little bit farther away from the center of the city for dinner. The suggested restaurant was closed for Sunday, but we found another neighborhood bistro just down the street. The price was right, even if my steak was underseasoned, and the DESSERT. Oh my. I have neverinmylife eaten something that good. I can't even really explain what it was. Some sort of salted caramel fondant-like dish, but perhaps the caramel was mixed with gelatin to create the outside? And then when you cut it with your spoon the liquid chocolate/caramel insides flooded out onto the plate and mixed with the cream and then haveIdiedandgonetoheaven?
|Excuse the cell phone quality photo, but here is THE BEST DESSERT IN THE WORLD.|
|On the second tier of the Eiffel Tower... Johan got a few "Go Seahawks!" from passers-by over the course of the weekend.|
|Johan was the guide the entire time. So happy I married someone who actually has a sense of direction!|
|I absolutely LOVE the architecture in Paris! The whole city seems to look like this!|