What do I love about Paris? I can’t phantom where to begin. This city is full of life, culture, values, cuisine, architecture and people that I love. It was liberating to visit this beautiful city. I have learned so many things during this visit. I’ll first pen down my struggle through what I call the Parisian jungle…
The connecting flight from Heathrow, landed us in Charles De Gaulle. Upon exiting the aircraft, I was surprised by people who were speaking, having conversation in French, duh, I’m in Paris, but still I was still in awe such a beautiful language, such a romantic language to hear! I was smitten with this language…is that even appropriate to say?
I ventured around the airport and slowly taking in the ambience, the new environment that I was currently in. I was inexplicably happy…just the idea of being in Paris. To visit Paris was one of my bucket list of places to visit years ago and now, I was actually in that foreign soil. I was overjoyed.
I learned first thing was that French people don’t like speaking English! Ha. I was so glad that my boyfriend speaks a little bit of French and understands it fully without a problem. He used to be a student in Paris for several months while he was doing his Master’s program. He was able to navigate us around the airport, to the train station to exit the airport to our hotel.
I bought our tickets and it was like 40 euros for both of us! And literally, in my head that was a lot of money for a freaking train ride. I say this because in Texas we rarely used the subways and if we do, it’s barely $2.50 max per ride so for me to pay 40 euros was a lot! But we had to buy it or use Uber which was even more expensive to get. Dollar to Euro exchange was low. Everything in Paris was expensive for my pockets.
I used google map to navigate and figure out which train to take to get us closer to our hotel. I tell you if you love traveling to different countries, you can definitely download the full map of the city for free and no data needed to use with google maps! I looked up our destination through google map and sure enough, the train ride was about an hour and 10 minutes. No wonder it was 40 euros.
Charles de Gaulle was like 18 miles to where our hotel was which was located a couple blocks from the Eiffel Tower as seen at the image below.
We arrived in Paris during the rush hour. The train was packed. Traveling with my hiking backpack, and my boyfriend’s luggage was a struggle. Trying to squeezed in and still keeping an eye on our belongings to make sure no one pick-pocketed us. I’m always cautioned when it comes to this matter. I don’t trust any one especially in a foreign city. I like to keep my things intact and with me at all times.
A long journey to Paris was exhausting. I thought I was going to be able to sit down while I enjoy the ride to the hotel, however, I was wrong. The ride was super packed. I can barely stand up straight without a person or two pushing my body due to the train movement and to how little space each of us are from one another.
It was a struggle as I was tired. My feet were sore from sitting down too long and the physical stress of being in one position (sitting down) for a long time. You would think, I would be better standing up after hours of sitting down, but nope, the weight of my large hiking backpack took a toll on my body.
My boyfriend noticed that my backpack were getting heavier and heavier by the minute on my shoulder and I was verbally stating it to him too. We were keeping an eye for an open seat, but every time a person get up and leave another person take it immediately.
I took off my backpack and laid it on top of his luggage, not only due to its weight but also my body was sweating from all the body heat confined in one train and I was wearing my thick jacket! (The weather was chilly when we landed in Paris) I could not handle it anymore, I was literally dripping in sweat and I felt it on the side of my face and on my back.
There were 35 more minutes into our ride, I got really bored of keeping an eye on my belongings, listening to French people conversing. I decided to turn on my roaming data to listen to my music on SoundCloud. I played my 2016 remix of EDM music to lighten up my mood and to enjoy the ride a little bit more.
Listening to my upbeat music always change my mood for the better. And it surely did…while listening to my music I kept thinking that I would definitely be paying so much for my data whilst my stay in Europe for all the good reason such as navigating through Paris with the use of maps, yelp for food and google for new places to see!
My boyfriend was so concerned about my situation so he suggested to get off few stops before our actual stop because he said we could easily walk to out hotel from there because it was only a few blocks away, few minutes of walk…I was in doubt about this, nevertheless, I listened to him and got out of the train. As soon as we got out and I googled our other routes to the hotel and I was rather disappointed. The walk was about 30 minutes and another train ride with different route was another 15 minutes.
I got super frustrated of acrtually waiting and dreading the 30 minute walk from the train station to the hotel. I suggested to my boyfriend to just get back in to the same train that we have gotten off, which I was so glad to jump back in because the train was almost empty! We had so much room to sit, lounge and put our stuffs on the ground.
And boom! We arrived at out train stop, La Tour-Maubourg.
My energy was replenished. The walk to the hotel was 10 minutes, and I did not mind it at all~! It was a gorgeous night.
After hours and hours of travel from Texas to Paris. We finally made it to our hotel. It was a sweet taste of the Parisian traffic and their daily culture which I kind-of-love it in a way. It was an eye opening to experience this travel with my boyfriend. He handled the travel stress that irritated me when I’m standing in one spot, sweating, hungry and thinking of when i’m going to be eat my snacks! Don’t mess with us girls when we are hungry and tired. It’s a bad combination.
Paris you were rough at first, but you are truly a beautiful city to be admired. You are the concrete jungle that I have been looking forward to for years.