Europe Trip 2016 was on! We made it to the airport and were ready to cross the ocean to see France, Switzerland, and Germany.After overcoming the types of problems that never occur to people traveling by air alone or in small groups, like Laura’s tickets not matching her passport and the people at the American Airlines desk somehow giving Matt one correct and one incorrect boarding pass, we all made it through security. The flight to Charlotte was delayed about twenty minutes, which was no big deal because we had a three hour layover there. The travelers ate a second lunch/first dinner and then we boarded the flight to Paris. Lightning strikes in the area delayed that flight about an hour and a half.
The travelers ate their second dinner, and then most people tried to sleep. Parents, just in case their are spinal issues later, you should know that some of your children slept FACE DOWN on their seat trays. It was painful just to look at. Around 10am we landed, grabbed our luggage, threw the luggage in the hotel, and then jumped on the metro. We emerged from the metro to see this: Our narcissistic impulses partially fulfilled, we climbed the stars to the top of the Arc.
At the top, we could see the whole city center.
There are great views of the Eiffel Tower…
…And Sacre Cour on MontMarte.
The next step was to take a walk down the Champs-Elysees, home of many high-end shops.
On the Champs-Elysees, dreams were fulfilled.
We ambitiously walked all the way to Place de la Concorde, about 1.2 miles from the Arc de Triomphe. It was a nice, cool day for a walk, although the combination of stops at expensive shops, photo ops with Ferraris and Lambourguinis, and jet lag resulted in the walk talking over an hour. At the Place de la Concorde, there was a metro stop that had a direct line back to the hotel. We had a bit of a problem, though, actually locating the metro in the giant square.
With the help of someone at the false metro stop above, we located the real metro stop and returned to the hotel in time to shower before dinner.