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Unread 14 Feb 07, 01:59 AM  
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3 nights in Paris nothing to do with that Hilton Hotel bir

Our first full day - Friday 9th February


Moi – Lana
Mon mari Alex – chief booker and provider of my dream break
Mon mielleur ami Siobhan – co-booker and secret keeper extraordinaire
Mon bon ami Brian, mari de Siobhan - Brian, Siobhan’s hubby, all round good guy


Weekday’s breakfast is served until 10am. We wake at 9.40am. Mad mental rush ensues with the possibility of our break starting with a huge fight but we calm down enough not to stab each other to death with the dresser pen and make it fully clothed to the breakfast room by 9.50am. They offer the standard faire of a continental breakfast and cooked breakfast both were delicious. Shiv and Brian had the rolls with assorted cold cuts of meat and grapes for their third course with Alex and & I opting for the croissants and pain au chocolate. Oh yes we know how to get our monies worth baby. The French cants do tea so I am now on the caffeine roller coaster that is daily copious quantities of caf au lait. We head back to the room an hour later and get our bags and coats. Although the weather is fine and mild, we all take hats and gloves just in case.

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The metro is 50 meters away from the door so we buy 2 carnets of tickets (one for each couple incase we head our separate ways) and head off to see the Eiffel Tower. We get off at Bir-Hakiem station and walk the few minutes it takes to reach the bottom of the tower. It still takes my breath away when I see it and to think they thought about taking it back down after the expo when it was first built. The wonderful thing about travelling with other people is that you get someone else’s perspective. Shiv found that if we got off at the Trocadero station the view of the Eiffel Tower as you walk to the top of the steps is better for a first time view and this is how she will show her kids this autumn when they go back. We choose to climb to the second floor then take the elevator to the very top. Although it is cloudy you still get an amazing 360o view of the city.

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a view from the Trocadero

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Its cold up there at the top so we head back to the ground and walk up to the Trocadero to find a place to eat lunch. We decide we will have a sandwich and a coffee but by the time we get seated outside and throw off our jackets we have ordered steak and chips. Alex has a beer and we have a bottle of red wine. It cost about 120euros and to be honest the evening meals ended up around the same price for the four of us each night. Alex and I want to see a show at the Moulin Rouge so after getting directions from the waiter we head for the metro to Montmartre. The vibe here is definitely different, more relaxed than the city centre. We head for the Sacre Coeur first then wander down the tiny streets looking at the fabric shops and trinket stores. It’s really quite cold on the exposed hill, so we head back down to the Boulevard to reach the Moulin Rouge. As you pass the usual collection of doorways offering “other shows” I cant help but feel uncomfortable as there are so many tourists taking their kids along the road heading past us. I really feel that some of the photos on display are too graphic for young kids to see. Alex is offered a free pass to see one adult show and another door way further down a guy asks me am I looking for any action. We march on ignoring them all. Its only 5.30pm for goodness sake, leave the hard sell until later guys! I hate being touted and it hacked me off so much that by the time I reached the famous windmill Id decided I wasn’t coming back that evening for the cancan. We decide to go to the Lido the next night instead. A photo taken of the windmill for posterity, we head to the first metro and back into the city.

[IMG][/IMG]

Now since we had a four course breakfast and half a cow for lunch we opt for a snooze back at the hotel. We arrange to meet up in the foyer around 10pm for dinner. Naps are lethal. By the time I’m awake again I feel groggy and unmotivated. All we want to do is curl up on the bed and sleep until the morning. As Shiv and Brian will be waiting for us we shower and dress again (well it would be rude to appear in the foyer naked) and plod out into the streets. Crossing to the Champs Elysees we walk half the length just to wake up. We head off down a side street and pass a bar called The Freedom. Its playing Johnny Cash, Ring of Fire and I almost break my neck running inside. It’s a great pub and eventually the other three realise I’m not leaving until the song is finished so they come in and we have a few glasses of wine. Across the street is a Chinese Restaurant that has a constant trade of customers coming in and out so rather than walk any further we agree to eat there. It’s quite bizarre inside with glass floors that have live fish and turtle’ swimming around inside it and it covers the entire floor. We are led to a balcony (also has a glass floor, you need to be sober to enter this place otherwise you’d get vertigo) covered with mirrors, subtle lighting and water features completing the dcor so I have no real idea of how big the restaurant was. But the floor was very strange indeed.

We order frogs legs in black pepper and a mixed plate of spring rolls for starters, both were delicious. Usual Chinese faire for mains of duck and sweet and sour chicken which we had to wait 50 minutes for as they forgot we were there. Those bloody mirrors again no doubt especially as the doorways were mirrored too. It took me ages to find my way out of the balcony to get to the toilet. I really wish we had taken our camera with us that evening; the kids would have loved to have seen it, the fish that is not me struggling to find the bathroom. 160euros lighter and we head back to the freedom for a night cap.

After getting a bit lost trying to find the Ave De Friedland we eventually get there and head to our rooms. We are each doing our own thing the next day so Alex and I agree to have an early breakfast. We are too full even for the chocolate on our pillow so it’s straight to bed and the agreement that we need to walk our butts off the next day to shift the massive amounts of food we have eaten in the last few days.

Edited at 05:24 PM.
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Unread 14 Feb 07, 02:05 AM  
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MrLazy
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Great fun had by all - have to agree with your mate about the view from Trocadero.
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Unread 14 Feb 07, 02:07 AM  
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Originally Posted by mcknigma
Great fun had by all - have to agree with your mate about the view from Trocadero.
yeah your right but for us its the nostalgia of coming out of the Bir-Hakeim station each time, like a ritual
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Unread 14 Feb 07, 02:09 AM  
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MrLazy
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Originally Posted by Lana
yeah your right but for us its the nostalgia of coming out of the Bir-Hakeim station each time, like a ritual
enough commenting on my commenst wheres day 4
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Unread 14 Feb 07, 08:48 PM  
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highlander447
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Your pics bring back some good memories, hope u make it to club lido loved it but prefered club de paris wow that is a real club
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Unexpected trip back to the Magic
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Unread 14 Feb 07, 09:08 PM  
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loadsapixiedust
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Trust you to find Johnny Cash in Paris! Sounds like you're having fun and eating well
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hope it wasn't the last time
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Unread 14 Feb 07, 09:18 PM  
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carys
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What a handsome couple !
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Hard Rock Orlando and Jamaica
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Unread 14 Feb 07, 10:09 PM  
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Originally Posted by loadsapixiedust
Trust you to find Johnny Cash in Paris! Sounds like you're having fun and eating well

cheers guys for all the comments.

Lynn, it was a sign from god . What was sad, was that I recognised the song from only about two chords, then ran into the pub at breakneck speed. They had no choice but to follow me in
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