Friday, 24 July 2009
Paris in Pieces
Just got back from Paris.
I love Paris. It's my favourite city. Steeped in history, shrouded in romance, Paris is, as I may have mentioned before, a city made for lovers to walk hand in hand through its streets...
I first visited France's capital city with my Mum, Jackie, and my brother, Mark, back in 1998. I returned very briefly in 2003 and met a very nice boy from Kazakhstan who I sadly lost touch with some years later. I told myself that one day I would return. It's taken six years for that day to come, but at long last I have finally returned to the city that I love.
I have just spent four days in Paris with my friends, Carl and Craig.
Carl and Craig stayed at a Parisian hostel, very popular with Algerian immigrants and Romanian asylum seekers, while I lived it up at a four star hotel. Ah, the benefits of capitalism. I did however remember to send over my shoe shine boy and I gave C & C permission to whip him mercilessly whenever they felt the need.
I can't say I did that much during those four days in that fine city.
I ended up spending a total of about five hours with Craig because (a) he left earlier than us and (b) he kept wandering off. I told him that he would eventually get lost and wouldn't find us again. Well, surprise surprise, he did just that. He wandered off and never returned which was more than a little annoying as part of the reason I headed to Paris when I did was to spend time with him.
It wasn't all bad though.... I headed to a restaurant with Carl where, for the second time in my life, I tucked into a serving of frogs legs (the first time was in Romania seven years ago). I can't say that I see the appeal of le legs of ze frog... there's just no meat on those suckers.
I haven't really spent enough time in France to form a proper opinion of the French people.
One thing I will say however is that the French are much more polite than the English... though us English do have a reputation for being overly polite, which we're not, really.
I have always admired the French for standing up to the Americans during the invasion of Iraq. Jacques Chirac saw through Bush's lies and told him where to get off... something that Tony Blair didn't have the guts to do. Unfortunately, Sarkozy, who is a wanker (and crap at jogging), models himself on Blair and is banning burkas. Oh dear.
Still, better to be in France than the police state that is the United Kingdom (police in the UK now have the right to stop you if you take a photo of them and they deem that your photo might aid terrorism. Of course, the rules aren't clear and many police officers are arresting people for any old reason and invoking the anti-terrorism act).
If I hated this country anymore than I do, I would say that the British, along with the Jews and Americans, are on a slippery slope to Hell. But of course I am not so consumed by hatred and so would never say anything like that. I will just close my eyes and walk blindly into the future, ignorant to the injustice, unfairness and evil that surrounds me...
I climbed to the top of the Eiffel Tower.
Well, I didn't actually climb it. I'm not Philippe Petite. But I did queue for 45 minutes to buy a ticket, then climb a few flights of stairs, then wait another hour and a half to get a lift to the top, then wait another 15 minutes to get a lift down which only took me halfway down which meant more stairs and then another lift which resulted in me finally getting away from the Eiffel Tower two hours later, by which point I hated it and never wanted to see it again and just wanted to eat some frogs legs.
Named after its designer, Gustave Eiffel, the Eiffel Tower opened on 6 May 1889. It was the world's tallest tower up until 1930 when New York's Chrysler Building was completed.
If you ever visit Tour Eiffel, go there in the evening. The tower is lit up and it looks rather beautiful. Quite magical. Just don't go there on a hot day in July... unless you like snotty-nosed kids, cans of Coke costing three euros, overcrowded metro stations and lots of queues.
So that's it. Paris in five easy pieces.
On our last night in Paris, there was actually a riot. Hundreds of cars were burnt out. I missed out on all of it... I was too busy in my hotel room, watching my wide screen TV and eating strawberries out of the bellybutton of a 25-year-old blonde Swedish virgin named Inga, who spoke only one word of English: "Yes".
Ah capitalism. Gotta love it.
P.S. Au Revior, Paris. See you next year, I hope.
- Professional Englishman
- London, ENGLAND, United Kingdom
- This is me. Read a few entries and they will tell you more about me than I can fit into these few paragraphs. Many of these entries started their lives as mass emails. That was before I discovered blogs. Thanks for stopping by and thanks for visiting my blog and reading about my life. Both a work in progress.