Recently I have been thinking about our future travels, as well as some of the amazing places we have been since we have been married. It also made me start thinking back to the first international trip we took across the pond to Paris, France in May 1999. It was a dream of mine that I had since I was a little kid, and I can still remember having excited butterflies in my stomach the night before we left. I could hardly wait, lol.
We had an amazing trip through France, but it was not without its issues and troubles. It got off to a rocky start before it even started, and those butterflies turned into knots. While we were sleeping the night before our trip, the hotel where we were booked sent us an email that our reservation had been canceled for some unknown reason and they were completely booked.
That was the email I saw when I decided to quickly check my email before we headed to the airport. Talk about having a panic attack. This was before such services as Airbnb, and we didn’t have cell phones with international calling and such. I tried reaching out to the hotel but they were unsympathetic and suggested a couple of other hotels, but he didn’t have the numbers, so I just jumped online and tried to find a few places.
At this point, we didn’t have the luxury of being too picky but ended up finding a nice hotel near the Sacré-Cœur close to the Abbesses Métro Station. It turned out fine, but as I said earlier, those butterflies from the night before turned into knots throughout our flight. We were so afraid something would happen again mid-flight and we would get to Paris without a place to stay, or have to pay an arm and a leg for something last minute :(. Luckily that didn’t happen and we were able to get settled in. Side note, the Abbesses Station is the deepest station in the Paris Métro system and of course, the elevator didn’t work that day. Joy Joy. Welcome to Paris, lol.
We only had 3 days in Paris before we headed to Nice and wanted to see as much as we could, however, the biggest item on my must-see list was the Musée de l’Orangerie with Monet’s masterpieces. Those dreams were smashed like the windows and pillars of the building that was being renovated. I was so upset and disappointed that I ruined part of a day being sad and upset. (On a side note, it took us 3 trips to Paris to see this museum, ). 🙁 Eventually, I ended up trying to forget it and not let it ruin the rest of the trip. It was hard to give up on something that you had wanted to see so bad and didn’t know if or when you would be back in the area.
A great time was had in Paris and had plans to go from Paris to Nice for the second half of our trip. However, we didn’t realize the day we were leaving was a national holiday in France and the trains to the airport only ran once an hour. Ugh, we missed our flight because we didn’t have time to check out luggage.:( The only thing they could do for us was silly, but we could go from Paris to London, and then to Nice. Like I said it seemed silly, but we thought “why not?” we hadn’t been to London yet. So we made it to London ok and waited for our flight to Nice. It took off late and we didn’t make it into Nice until about 12:30 am the next morning.
Before we left London, I was worried about our rental car so I went to the rental car company in the Heathrow airport and had them send a message to the Nice airport that our flight would be late. Guess what? The car rental place didn’t wait for our flight to land. So here we were stuck in an airport in Nice almost 1:00 am by then and no way to get to our timeshare resort where we were staying. Eventually, we took a cab, but it was not cheap as the resort was almost 45 mins away. Then we had to spend the next morning taking a bus to another rental location near our resort to pick up a rental car. Luckily they took the price of the cab fare off the rental price, but it was still annoying.
We ended up having a great trip (most of the time anyway) but we will definitely not forget our first trip to France. However, I wish I could say that it wasn’t the last time we missed a flight out of Paris. There must be something about us and the Charles de Gaulle airport, lol. More on that another time. Stay tuned for more adventures. Happy travels.
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6 thoughts on “Paris – Trials And Tribulations While Visiting Beautiful France”
What an exciting trip and beautiful photos!