EUROTRIP: Paris, France (Day Two)

08 July 2019 Paris, France

Our second day in the City of Lights or la Ville Lumière was the most productive and, as a result, the most tiring out of our entire 3-day stay. We wanted to make the most off of what was left of our time in the city and to compensate for that one whole day we lost due to our delayed flight. I woke up at around 5am, checked my phone for messages, replied to them, and at 5:30am, I asked Ate (elder sister) if we should get ready early, so we could take pictures at the Louvre and at the Eiffel Tower before the crowd starts coming in. She agreed, and we woke everyone up, which wasn't hard since we were all pretty jet lagged anyway.

 Outfit Details 
Sweater • Forever 21
Coat • Divisoria
Skirt • (gifted)
Shoes • Tretorn

As I've said from my last post, Musée du Louvre is only a 2-minute walk away from our hotel so at 7am we were already there taking loads of pictures, with barely 10 other tourists around us. It was not long before I realized that, having changed my bag before we left, I forgot my passport at the hotel, so we had to go back before taking the bus to Tour de Eiffel. Feeling guilty since I caused our delay, I began to feel at ease again when everyone started layering in more clothes as we got back because the temperature was lower than what the weather app claimed it to be. I myself had to trade my skirt for a pair of trousers and my low-neck sweater for a turtleneck with additional top and bottom heat tech pieces underneath. I also switched bags since I thought that my backpack would be a less bothersome option what with all the walking we're going to do. Finally, we were ready to go! But not before grabbing some food at the nearest boulangerie just down the block from where we were staying.

And here we are.

 Outfit Details 
Black Top • Greenhills
Coat • Divisoria
Trousers • Trendsetter's Bazaar
Shoes • Tretorn

I have to say that the Eiffel Tower really took my breath away the first time I saw it, and I'm well aware of how cliché that sounds. On the bus ride there, we already caught a few glimpses of it, and I was actually already feeling giddy inside. Somehow I remembered all the wonderful films I've watched and books I've read that were set in Paris. I'm so glad we walked straight to Jardins du Trocadéro which provided us a great spot to appreciate the whole view of the tower from afar before coming near it. Here I am trying to look nonchalant as I can be (but in reality I'm so kilig).

I decided to video call with Cyrill as we made our way towards the Iron Lady. Thankfully, I caught him online at that time of the day. If you didn't know, most of Europe has a time zone that is 6 hours behind that of the Philippines's. And I don't know why, but Mom decided to shop for pasalubong (souvenirs) right then and there in front of the tower. I thought about how overpriced the items probably were, but we didn't really have any more time to go around and look for cheaper alternatives. Perhaps, next time?

Anyway, after checking off two main tourist spots on our list, we went to pick up our Paris Museum Passes at the Central Paris Tourist Office and grabbed lunch at a nearby milk tea place which, oddly enough, also serves Korean rice meals. For the cheap price, their food was unexpectedly good. All fueled up, we were then more than ready to take on what's left of our day's itinerary.

We took the train to the little island where Sainte Chapelle, Conciergerie, and Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris were. Even though they were of walking distance from each other, it was quite hard for us to go from one place to another because it kept raining every few minutes! It's a good thing that we brought umbrellas.

I guess it's safe to say that it truly broke my heart, actually all of ours, that we couldn't go inside Notre-Dame because obviously it's still under repair from the fire. A local told us that it's definitely gonna take a few years for it to be opened to the public again.

After saying our little prayers, we bid good bye to the cathedral and crossed the bridge to visit one of the places I'm most excited to see during our trip here, the charming Shakespeare and Company.

This independent English bookshop, despite its small and crumbling state, is said to be the most famous of its kind in the world. As someone who has deep love for reading books or words in general, especially for leisure, I didn't even think twice about visiting here. Upon entering the little building, I immediately felt like I was in a different world. It was like passing through that secret wall in the The Leaky Cauldron and into Diagon Alley (a Harry Potter reference, yes). It's not allowed to take pictures inside, but I did manage to sneak a few:

It felt like I was home even for a while as I sat on one of the reading nooks inside. If it were only up to me, I would've spent the rest of the day there. But there's no stopping for more of Paris, of course!

Next stop was the Pantheon. Getting here was not an easy task, I should say. We couldn't find the bus stop near the bookshop so we had to walk from there while it was raining so badly. But the moment I walked into this seemingly typical old structure from the outside, I genuinely thought that our inconvenience was far too inconsequential when I weigh in the beauty of this glorious place.

I know even the panorama shot doesn't do this place justice, but it really left me speechless for a couple of minutes. Throughout, I only kept saying, "Ang ganda."

Somehow, we soon found ourselves walking along Rue Gay-Lussac which leads right to Jardin du Luxembourg. Ate and I had to help each other recall where we know the name from our lessons in school. As it turns out, it was an actual street named after French chemist Joseph Louis Gay-Lussac, famous for his law, (obviously) the Gay-Lussac's law. Truly, we discover new things everyday. 😅

After more walking and people-watching, we decided to go back to the hotel to rest for a bit until we left again at around 9pm to visit the Louvre (you know, go inside for real this time) as well as to see the Eiffel Tower light up under the night sky. The sun didn't set until 10-ish, so we killed time by having a picnic dinner at the Trocadero Gardens with a family friend we planned to meet up with.

It was indeed an amazing day filled with unique French culture, beautiful Haussmannien architecture, and unpredictable Parisian weather, among many others. I slept that night still not believing how lucky we all are for such an incredible experience. I cannot wait to share with you the rest of our adventures in this Eurotrip. The best is yet to come, so keep posted.

As always, have a lovely day wherever you are in the world right now, take care always, and love lots!

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