I was in Paris last weekend but I just got around to writing a blog post about it because I was so busy this past week; I had so many submission deadlines to meet. I usually travel in the night while it is dark so I never got a view of the German countryside. This time around, however, my bus departed at 15:15 so I got a proper view of the German countryside and it is very picturesque, like something out of a fairytale (well, most fairy tales originated in Germany, so I get where the inspiration came from). I had to change buses in the Dortmund Central Bus Station, so I can say I have been to Dortmund and Munich (wink wink).
My trip to Paris was somewhat unplanned. I left for Paris on the 10th of June (Friday) but I only bought my ticket on the 8th of June. I tried to buy my ticket (cost: 101 Euros) twice on the 6th of June (Monday) but the transaction was not permitted. I was going to postpone my trip to a later weekend because I thought if I bought the ticket after the 6th , it would be more expensive than 101 Euros. I decided to try again on the 8th because I really did not want to spend my weekend in Cottbus (I was craving adventure), so I booked the ticket and it cost me 86 Euros (dancing emoji). I wanted to buy a ticket to visit Versailles Palace which cost 15 Euros, so I was able to buy a bus ticket and a ticket for Versailles for the same amount that I would have spent on just a bus ticket earlier; I guess everything does happen for a reason.
I was a bit apprehensive about visiting Paris because I heard that Parisians do not speak English (even when they can), so I was wondering what my fate would be if I got lost and had no access to Wi-Fi. Luckily, that scenario did not occur (dance emoji). I arrived in Paris in the morning and I went to a bathroom to freshen up. After that, I went to the nearest train station where I bought a day ticket that allowed me to travel to all 5 zones of Paris. I bought a ticket for all 5 zones because I was going to Versailles and it is not in the city centre. The rail system in Paris is very complicated (at least compared to the German rail system); there are 3 types of trains, Metro, RER, and T trains and there are at least 6 types of RER trains. It took some getting used to but I was able to find my way around and I really made use of my day ticket (I made about 10 trips with the trains). After I bought my day ticket, I went to the meeting place (Fountain of St. Michael) of the tour I booked. The tour was very informative and entertaining (what else does one want from a tour) and it was about 3 hours long so my ankles were on fire. Halfway into the tour, it started to lightly rain but I was prepared. However, I could not take as many pictures as I wanted because my phone has to survive for at least another year. Paris had the atmosphere of the Euro 2016, there were many fans with their countries’ jerseys roaming around (FYI, Swedish guys are hot, I mean really hot. I am considering moving to Sweden). One of the destinations of our tour was the Louvre and when we arrived there, I became sad. I became sad because they were armed soldiers around the museum and it reminded me of the terrorist attack that occurred in Paris a few months ago, but Paris is still alive and going strong.
After the tour ended, I had lunch and made my way to Versailles. Versailles is one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen. It was sublime, glorious, and magnificent. The ceiling, furniture, paintings and statues are all awe inspiring. I am rambling but I cannot describe how beautiful it is. However, seeing the grand palace made me realise and understand why the French revolution happened. The monarchs and nobles lived their lavish lives in the palace but it was the commoners that bore the cost of all the excesses. The gardens are just as beautiful and exquisite as the palace. Unfortunately, since admission to the gardens is not free on weekends, I could not enter, but I did have a wonderful view of the gardens from the palace. I cannot talk about Versailles without talking about the Hall of Mirrors. Take every positive adjective I have used to describe Versailles, multiply it by 10, that is how awesome the Hall of Mirrors is. After my tour of Versailles (I had an audio guide) was over, I went to the Eiffel Tower and then to Notre Dame. The Eiffel Tower is over hyped in my humble opinion; it is just a glorified radio mast. I really wanted to visit Notre Dame because I wanted to see Quasimoto but unfortunately, he does not live there (cry face). Entry into the cathedral is free and so the queue was very long. When I first saw the length of the queue I decided not to enter Notre Dame, but upon further investigation (I just finished an episode of Sherlock, so I am in the zone), I noticed the queue moved very quickly so I would not have to wait for a ridiculous amount of time. The cathedral is really beautiful, when I entered, the organ was playing and the music added to the beauty of the cathedral.
After I left Notre Dame, I made my way to the Arc de Triomphe . The Arc is really intricately designed and beautiful. I did roam around the city for a while after it got dark and I know why Paris is called “ the City of Light”. Paris comes alive in the dark and almost seems magical. After my roaming, I made my way to the bus station where I had dinner in the McDonalds and waited for my bus to arrive. The journey to Berlin was smooth and the most enjoyable I have had so far because no one seating beside me.