Friday December 12: Paris /Eurodisney
Saw the Euro-Disney group off at 9.00am on a pre-arranged coach. Lorraine, Judy, Ali, Winston and I had the day off without kiddies- the first for weeks and it WAS welcome. My friend from Fromelles, Carole, travelled down by train to have the day with us. After organising some postage and other bits we set off for a day in this gorgeous city. However, as has been the case all trip, the weather gods were still cross. It was zero to one degree and even though the sun tried to poke through it was bitterly cold. First stop was the Eiffel Tower just to sort out the Metro journey for the next day. Found the ticket seller for cruises on the Seine so for an hour we were treated to the sites along this part of the city. French music played in the boat and, to the strains of Edith Piaf and many references to the city of love, we just soaked it all in. Two young lovers were on the banks of the river blissfully unaware of their surroundings. I guess that's one way to keep warm on a one degree day in Paris! Found a cafe for lunch and to escape the cold. Quiche, salad and chips warmed us up along with the yummiest hot chocolate ever made by human hand; Divine! Refuelled and ready to tackle the cold again, we were off. Normally the walk along the Seine to the Pont Alexandre 111 (bridge) is a joy but today it was hard work trying to keep ears, nose and other bits from freezing and dropping off. Making our way to Place de Concorde we took on a fern's wheel ride overlooking the Champs-Elysees. It ended up being an unexpected highlight as there were very few tourists and we had several spins around. The views were breathtaking as we could see right up the length of the Champs-Elysees and down towards the Louvre. It was that time of the afternoon when the light fades so the trees, which were covered in Christmas lights, twinkled creating a magical fairyland. The other advantage was the little pod things were heated! Our original intention was to walk the complete length of the Champs-Elysees. A truly lovely experience normally but today, we were tired an fed up with the cold, so we made one last stop via the Metro to the most divine shop in the world; the Galeries Lafayette. Now this is a shopper's experience to savour...but with an unlimited credit card. Prices are so ridiculous for the 'normal' person that it is a place just to look at. The attraction, that draws so many tourists, are the ornate lights on the exterior of the building and the massive Christmas tree in the middle of the store. It is several floors high and just gorgeous with its opulence.
It was time to take on the hordes at the Metro and what a daunting time it was. Crammed in with the workers of Paris was something of a nightmare! I guess it is one way to meet people....up close and VERY personal! We decided to have dinner at the hotel for the sake of ease. The food is fine so it was a pleasant way to spend the last few hours with Carole. She was due to catch a 10.00 pm train back to Fromelles so for the final time it was goodbye to yet another close friend. It was made easier this time though, as I knew we would see each other in 2009. Kids came back from Euro-Disney full of their day of fun and Mickey Mouse stuff. Poor Mal! Bed was my friend as we prepared for the last day in Paris before our return home.