Paris Entry

Posted on March 30th, 2009 @ 22:08 in Uncategorized

Yay supershort Paris trip!!!! I will explain how this came about. After the Athens-trip (described above) I had a two-fold desire: to do a trip on my own again (because it’s just less… stressful), and to fly from Heathrow Terminal 5 again (because it’s sooo pleasant compared with… pretty much any other airport I’ve been to).

Add to that a late night on Monday with crazy ideas running through my head… it all culminated in “I WANNA GO TO PARIS, LET’S SEE WHAT’S AVAILABLE!” Well, it turned out there was a not-too-expensive flight available the very next weekend! Cheaper than the weekend after anyway. That was all I needed really.

Was it worth it? Oh goddamn yes it was! I can’t remember Paris ever not being worth it. I was sooooo in love most of the week-end. And it loves me back. 😡 For the weather forecast had been pretty shitty (and I was a bit worried), but in the end it was very pleasant, it only rained on me once, and the rest of the time it was mostly blue skies. And Paris did that all for me! No honest! (I actually sorta believe that on a weird warped level. *ahem* I mean, I know the city doesn’t have a personality, and I know if it did it couldn’t influence the weather… but there’s just some connection, know what I mean? We’re meant to be. I know that sounds crazy. Call it my own little personal delusion.)

Right right, back to the facts, aka my Paris report for future reference.


  • I was on a bike by 9:50. My first stop was rue St Honoré to buy chocolate for my mum. Got kinda lost in the bloody one way streets of the 1st arrd’t and went aaaall the way round. :)) Then parked bike and walked straight past the shop & had to call mum to ask where it was and ended up walking all the way back. 😛
  • Next stop was the Unesco building for an exhib of satellite photos on its gates. This all seemed rather familiar, I think I’ve seen most of those before – all about “the riches of the world” and stuff. Was nice tho, and I found that supercute market on the Place de Breteuil again, and walked up and down it and had a moment of intense happiness like only Paris can give me. 😡 Also bought cherry tomatoes and raspberries.
  • Cycled back up to Gare de Lyon for another outdoors exhib (figured I’d make the most of the weather while it lasted) – this was for the 60th anniversary of Paris Match (the French gossip mag) themed “Rencontres” (meetings). It was quite nice and moving in parts.
  • It also made me realise I’d never been to the Gare de Lyon, or even the 12th arrd’t in general (not consciously anyway). I saw some fun things, was intrigued, and vowed to come back. Esp. to the very cool “promenade plantée” – but first the hotel.
  • Hotel was Bastille de Launay near the Bastille and I was very pleased with it (tbh I’ve been very pleased with every hotel I’ve booked over so far). So after that back to the promenade plantée, which was also very cute, but then it started raining and I got wet. But I had inside stuff to do as well!
  • As it was raining rather a lot I decided to go to the Louvre to see Le Petit Dessein about comics – because you can walk straight in from the métro station, without getting wet. Turned out I had to get a general admission ticket to see it, so I thought, never actually been to the Louvre, so why not? (I know! always sooo many people tho) As usual there were very many people, I got impatient, then looked up (you’re right under the pyramid when you’re in the foyer queuing) and it was no longer raining, so I thought fuck this and moved on. :))
  • Next stop was an exhib about Le Petit Nicolas at the Hôtel de Ville – but here too there were WAY too many people queuing for my taste (and with lots of kids, to boot). So instead I went shopping for all the stuff I needed, then to Paris, capitale photographique1920-1940 (this was ok). Also walked around the Place des Vosges in the rain, which was fun.
  • Then long break at hotel, watching TV and resting feet, and then out again for another walk (with a short attempt at cycling, but oh my bum!) for an hour or so, to quartier Mouffetard, then back. Got very close to my uni from when I was there, which was… a bit weird. Not necessarily in a bad way.


  • In the Times I got on the plane I’d read an article about a cool graffiti exhib at the Grand Palais so that was my first stop on Sunday. This was easily the highlight of my trip as far as the “cultural programme” went. It was amazing, and I’m so glad I found out about it (it wasn’t in the normal “what’s on” programme I buy). I took loads of pics which I may show on Flickr, but will have to check if that’s cool first.
  • Next I walked to the 6e (I was no longer cycling, oh no.) for a David LaChapelle retrospective (pdf). I sorta went there as a “must see”, but liked it a lot more than I expected. Also there was next to no queue when I got there (there was when I got out!).
  • My next (and last) thing to do was a photo exhib about controverial photographs that sparked trials. Again I walked all the way… and found unmanageable queues and decided to fuck it (might try again in May). I did however also find a cute church and a pretty shop gallery so that was ok.
  • As my feet were strongly protesting again I decided to spend the rest of the afternoon at the Tuileries, which I did, reading and observing people. Then it got cold and I moved to a café. Then it was time and I left.

I was really really sad to leave, despite all the bits of me that hurt like hell – I couldn’t have stayed another day if I’d wanted, I was almost unable to walk! I actually had a moment of “how will I survive until I’m next scheduled to come in May?”… and then I realised it was almost April, so mid-May was only another 6 weeks or so – wooooo!!!! So then I felt ok about leaving! 😀

But yeah this was a total “in love” visit. Apologies for going on about it again, but wow, nothing at all makes me happy like Paris does. If there were flights from bloody Gatwick (whyyyy!!?!) I might actually consider “commuting” every weekend (much like I used to go back to Lux every week-end when I lived there. *sigh* I know – what a wasted opportunity. But it wasn’t meant to be and it’s ok. Paris has forgiven me, and still loves me. Shut it.)

And thus ends this Paris entry. Many many more to follow! 😡


Charles said on Mar 30, 2009 at 10:35 pm

I’m glad you told me to shut it when you did, because I was going to say… did you go to the rue de Bellechasse and seek atonement?

Clarissa said on Mar 30, 2009 at 10:57 pm

I did walk past it and wistfully thought back on the missed opportunities, and my time there.
No atonement needed tho. Paris and I have moved beyond that. 🙂


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