*I make it through customs (which, seriously - do they even bother checking for banned items?) and onto the train. At the metro station I ask a young girl for directions to the Rue des Fontaines du Temple. No luck. I ask again. No dice. I figure my French can't be that bad. I ask an ice cream truck vendor, who (1) corrects my speech and then (2) points me in the right direction. I start walking and realize that I've managed to surface from the Metro right into a Deaf-rights awareness rally. It seems I was using the wrong kind of French in this instance.
*Finally make it to the apartment Mere has rented for the week. We hug and realize that we're wearing matching outfits. Huh. I desperately want a shower, but that may send me straight into a coma so I opt for a change of clothing and we hit the streets instead. We stop for lunch at a cafe, where I place a garbled order for an omelette and a glass of rosé. People watching ensues.
*Commence project Keep Adrienne Awake to Fight Jetlag. Which consists of more walking. Lots more. At least it's nice out - Paris is experiencing an unusual break in the weather this week. Fine by me! We pop into a sports bar quickly so I can ask about the France v. All Blacks game. (Which my team won, thank you very much!)
*We end up at Notre Dame de Paris, which is very cool. And extremely crowded.
* More walking. We explore the Latin Quarter. I almost buy a handmade animated music box for 72 euros but sanity stays my hand. We eventually stop for caffeine and beer, which made sense at the time.
*We start to walk towards the Bastille. We're a few blocks away when my feet start to really, really hurt and I'm having trouble staying awake while standing, which is a new and unpleasant experience for me. We metro back to the apt and I cat nap for a few minutes.
*Using what has to be the slowest Internet connection in the Western world, we find some vegetarian places to eat dinner and some bars to drink in afterwards. Time to put on our fancy clothes before hitting the town!
*Dinner is ...not good. But the drinks - now those are impressive. We first stop at the Experimental Cocktail Club near Montorgueil. It's tiny and there are a LOT of people crammed in there, but the music is all kinds of fantastic. And the cocktails are off the friggin chain. I have a Brunette, which contains something like 6 types of liquor (I'm estimating based on how loopy I felt after just one), while Mere has something called the Experience. All I know is that it contains lemongrass. And a hefty dose of deliciousness.
*The next place is a Brit-rock-like pub. There's no other way to describe. We're definitely out of our age group and the top shelf liquor appears to be Jack Daniels. I settle for a whiskey and make Mere watch some of the soccer game that's played on a big screen in the main room. All kinds of 80s and 90s Brit rock and pop is coming out of a smokey room on the side, which we check out. I last all of 6 minutes before heading for the exit.
*We stumble around some more before I pull a full pumpkin and beg for a cab. We manage to find some in front of the Opéra de Paris, which is beautiful. However, I am just too damned tired to care at this point.
*We make it back to the apt, but Mere is hungry. This proves problematic as (1) it's after two in the morning and (2) Mere is vegan. Most of the kitchens we find serve either meat or cheese (seriously - even the one salad we were offered was a cheese salad). We finally find a fried chicken joint that for reasons I don't quite understand has a veggie burger on it's menu. SOLD. It's a crappy burger, but mine comes with fries and a Fanta, so I'm good and happy.
*FINALLY- we make it home! We watch a dubbed episode of Supernatural and I enjoy another 1/2 glass of wine before completely crashing.
*It's the end of my first Saturday in Paris and I'm equal parts exhausted and stoked.
*I still need that shower though...