Playing Esmeralda & Pretending to Party Gatsby Style: Paris

Day 8

We woke up and headed straight to Notre Dame. My dreams of being Esmeralda were coming true! Thanks to the rain, the Seine river was flooding and the French were in a bit of a panic over it, closing the Louvre and moving the art to dryer ground. Luckily, neither Blake nor I are very into art, so this wasn’t a huge loss for us. Notre Dame was very cool, but unlike La Sagrada Familia, its’ outside is the best part while its’ inside is dark and similar to many lesser Cathedrals.

After walking silently through the Hunchback’s home, we walked to the Louvre and sat in the Jardin Des Tuileries. Despite the chilly weather and rain, Paris was growing on me. There’s so much to do and see that it’s impossible not to at least fall momentarily in love with the city. After some more walking- thank God I had broken in my flats by now- we made our way to the Eiffel tower. Now, let me just explain that as a girl from a very small, boring town in Midwestern America, seeing he tower was incredible.

When I first spotted it as we were leaving the Jardin, I acted like a schoolgirl who was flirting with her crush for the first time. I jumped up and down while making Blake take pictures of me pointing to it in the background. I honestly never really imagined myself making it to the Eiffel Tower. My dream of moving to the home of the Hollywood sign seemed grand enough for a girl from a town that no one leaves. Yet, I had turned that dream into a reality 5 years ago and now was standing next to something even less imaginable, the Eiffel Tower.

We took our fair share of touristy pictures then got in line to take the elevator to the top. It’s a good thing I’m not afraid of heights because shit is that tower tall. Its’ builder, Gustave Eiffel, had an apartment at the top of it, our guide told us, where he threw huge parties Gatsby style. Talk about a baller. Since the apartment is now gone and there’s no way to party the night away in the coolest spot ever, I attempted to get as close to that epicness as I could and ordered a glass of champagne.

The whole experience was magical. Blake and I kissed as any couple in Paris should on top of the Eiffel tower. Our thing, since we didn’t know how to say “kiss me” in French was to instead say “Besame in French,” which we proceeded to do in every city saying things like “Besame in Madrid.” How cute. If that’s not enough to make you vom over a gushy overload, then nothing is.

After the tower we decided to continue the French experience and went to a restaurant to order escargot. Snails. On the count of three we shoved the mushy things into our mouths, which I promptly spit back out. I did force myself to swallow a couple after that while Blake watched me in disgusted disbelief, but hey, we tried. No clue why snails are a delicacy here.

After choking back the snails we decided to go out and check out whether the Parisians could party or not. I found an underground bar/speakeasy that we headed to first. The bar, Moonshiners, was definitely a local spot. And, while making friends with fellow travelers in bathrooms is easy, finding party buddies with people who you can’t understand is not. We also found out that it’s especially hard for couples to make friends. Not only does being a couple mean that there is a lack of people hitting on you, the quickest and most sure fire way for a girl to find people to talk to at a bar, but it also makes fellow girls less likely to talk to you. I mean, I wouldn’t go up to a girl and her boyfriend at a bar A) don’t want to 3rd wheel B) don’t want her to think I’m hitting on her man. So, alone we stood admiring the hipster bartender’s impressive mixing skills and drinking their equally as impressive whiskey cocktails.

Then, after realizing I hate whiskey and finding party friends was too daunting, we wandered to find a new bar. Luckily, we stumbled across a street lined with traveler bars. A few shots at bars filled with backpackers and American rap music later and our party selves were content.