My friend Crystal has a friend who drives a taxi in Paris named Jacques. Jacques is a very kind Frenchman. They picked me up at the airport and instead of taking me directly to where I am staying, he took me on a little tour of the city. Any of you who know anything about Paris driving probably fear the Etoile, a traffic circle around the Arc de Triomphe where 12 roads come together. Of course, being a Paris taxi driver, Jacques took me right there, and then down the Champs Elysees, and basically all over Paris. I got to see most of my favorite monuments before I even dropped off my luggage! Plus, this taxi ride from the airport was free! Merci Jacques.
I am staying at a student dormitory/hostel thing for the next few days until the family I will be an au pair for arrives on the 31st of August. It is a wonderful place. I found out about it through Crystal because she stayed here last summer. It is right on Boulevard Saint-Michel, across the street from the Luxembourg Gardens. In fact, I went for a run in the gardens this morning! BEAUTIFUL! Where I am currently staying, there is a terrace at the top of the building with an exquisite view of Paris. I am actually on the terrace right now soaking up some sun, looking up every now and again to take in the city. This is my view...
Amazing, isn't it?!
Last night, Crystal was able to stay with me and we decided to really make a night out of it. My friend Sylvain invited us to join him and some of his friends at a hip new bar called Rosa Bonheur. We went and had a blast. First of all, it was a little difficult to find this bar because it was in a park, but once we were close, we could hear where we needed to go. Great music, great drinks, relaxing/fun atmosphere. We drank wine with his friends outside, then once we collected enough plastic cups to receive a free beer (30), we went inside to dance. Sylvain and his friends are very nice, fun people.
So here I am, relaxing on my second day in Paris. The weather is great...sunny and warm, and I have no obligations. I will probably go for a walk soon to explore the neighborhood. I know there is a grocery store around here closer than the one I just visited. Now that I am here, I'm sure I will have a lot to write about. Hopefully I'll have the time. A bientot!