Wandering alone, Montmartre, and random naked men

Paris Travel Blog

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I made it a point to wake up early to fully enjoy my last day in Paris, and sure enough, I woke up at 8. SUCCESS. Omar and I got our final breakfast at our trusty old patisserie down the street and I got my final, beloved tarte fraise (strawberry tart). So good!

I asked Omar if he wouldn't mind splitting up for our final day. As much as I love sightseeing and a friend's company, sometimes I just prefer to wander around alone and taking in the feel of a place. So we split up and I made my way over to the Opera house area. The Opera house is undoubtedly my favorite building of Paris. I feel like it embodies the spirit of everything the city is known for: beauty, art, and history. I wandered around there one final time and kept walking around until I hit the next metro station.

By this point my Navigo had expired, so I was having to purchase ticket by ticket to get to where I needed to go. Thank the Lord I stumbled across this specific metro stop because not only was it blatantly easy to sneak my way through the gate, but no one was there to fine me! I love my life.

Celeste had mentioned that the one attraction she hadn't seen in Paris yet was the Grande Arche de la Defense. I had seen pictures of it and knew that it was the modern, kind of ugly cousin of the Arc de Triomphe, but I heard that the area itself was kind of interesting. So after consulting the metro map at the station, I hopped onto the metro and took all 15 or so stops to get there.

This may be weird, but I love the metro. Granted, the stuffiness and lack of air conditioning make for a miserable time, but I enjoy being able to get from Point A to Point B so quickly.

I'm still in awe of the Paris metro system and its efficiency.

Once I got to La Defense, the first thing I noticed was the size. OMG it was huge! I'm not big on modern art or such minimalist design, but I respected it for the size, if nothing else. Well, there was a huge shopping center (apparently the biggest) right across the street from the arch, so naturally I made my way over there. Long story short, I bought some amazing things at H&M and called it a day.

Once I got back to the apartment, we all took a breather from our adventures and made our way over to Montmartre. I had heard wonderful things about this area and its sheer Parisian-ness.

Well, once we got there, I realized why so many people loved it. While it is somewhat touristy due to the Sacre Couer and Moulin Rouge, it still maintains the charm one expects from Paris- probably more so than any other neighborhood I had visited. It was young, but it had history. It was gritty, but it also had classic beauty.

We made our way up to the top of the Sacre Coeur. Oh, one thing I should mention is that today I was ridiculously sick. I had caught some time of cold and my body was hurting as if somebody had punched me a thousand times. Ugh, it was so uncomfortable, but I thoroughly enjoyed the experience. The views were beautiful from the top of Sacre Coeur! Absolutely amazing. It was weird, because I always expect the Eiffel Tower to be in the Parisian skyline, but it wasn't visible from the top.

After the Sacre Coeur, Omar, Celeste, Pam and I went to this little pizza restaurant down the street. I had absolutely no appetite, but I thoroughly enjoyed my Diet Coke and Sprite. haha We were also joined by one of Pam's friends, Shyra (I think that was her name) who was also interning at the embassy.

Once we finished dinner we made our way to the Moulin Rouge. haha The area was so sketch, but it was so fun walking around there. Although I don't like the movie, it was so exciting to see the Moulin Rouge in front of me. I wish we could have seen a show or something, but alas, I am a broke student. Whatever, it was still exciting.

So Omar wanted to go to the Eiffel Tower one last time, but by now I was so tired and sick that I just wanted to sleep. Celeste agreed with me and Pam decided to go with Omar.

Stolen from Omar.
So this is where Pam and I had our farewell. It's so weird thinking that someone who played a big role in my stay in Paris was a complete stranger just 1 1/2 weeks earlier. It was my first introduction to the whole "together for a city" type of backpacker relationship I've always heard about.

Well after that farewell we went back to Celeste's apartment and decided that we'd go up to her roof and watch the Eiffel Tower twinkle one last time. We were up there and talking, joking about falling onto somebody's balcony. All of a sudden we hear a voice from the floor below and look over the ledge, and a man was there saying hello. And then he said "Sorry, I am a bit nude" and went to go get a towel. hahaha I guess he just came out of the shower and wanted to see the Eiffel Tower twinkle as well, but who goes out onto their balcony nude?! Oh my god, it was hilarious and was probably one of the random highlights of the trip.

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Stolen from Omar.
Stolen from Omar.
8,801 km (5,469 miles) traveled
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photo by: Sweetski