We awoke on our final day in Paris with rain! Our itinerary had us spending the day on Velib’s (Bikes) that are available for hire throughout the city of Paris. So as we weren’t keen on the idea of getting wet, we decided to do a few errands in preparation for the Camino. Ok, we got a little side tracked with breakfast and some fancy Macarons that had our names written all over them! (Couldn’t post the Croissant, but I hope the close up satisfies you Mark. And it was delicious!)
By midday, most of the rain had eased and it was time to finish off our trip with a number of Paris landmarks (how many can one have!) including the famous Eiffel Tower (However, was a little disappointed that we would see it on a drab wet day!).
We’ll let you into a little secret at this point, in that we have had our entire Paris itinerary literally mapped out for us with what to see, how to get there and history on each of the special places we visited. Not only that, but restaurants were hand picked and reservations made for us all by the very special people at “Travel by Design” an exclusive consultancy that specialises in unique and tailored travel itineraries. Don’t bother looking them up, as they don’t advertise. We are just fortunate to personally know of them as we’d have never been able to afford their services, which incidentally extends to ringing them at any time of day or night if needed. Samples of their great work are here…
Which brings me to the following incident… Standing in “front” of a Velib ticket machine, we couldn’t make head nor tail on how one could hire a bike. It appeared that the station of bikes we were at were exclusively for pass holders only. We pushed, prodded and pulled at any button on the machine or bike stand that we thought might allow us access. Confused we decided to ring our friends at Travel by Design and got straight through to the Paris specialist. After explaining our predicament we were told that we must insert our credit card, but we insisted that there was no credit card slot on the machine! After a few minutes or so later, with now a bewildered but patient consultant on the other end of the phone, we finally stumbled upon the fact that the ticket machine did in fact have a credit card facility for casual hirers, it was just that we were facing the wrong side! (Doh!)
We were finally on the way, being very resourceful, we decided on reversing the itinerary, so we could finish up with the Eiffel Tower as the finale! Whilst we completed the itinerary in the reverse order, it did come at a cost! Due to the carefully mapped out course that includes travelling along one way streets!!! Try doing that in reverse!!! Suicide!!!
It came at the cost of being ordered off the footpath as we attempted to pass 3 Police women out for a stroll? And some abuse by local Parisians!
And what do you know… The sun came out late in the afternoon to set the stage for the famous Eiffel Tower and for our Paris Finale, a ride in a Citron 2CV. But that deserves its own posting! For now you will have to wait as we have run out of time and may not be able to post for possibly a few days!!! We are off to Saint-Jean-Pied-De-Port with the alarm set for 4:30!
Ok, just a sneak preview… (It just doesn’t get any better than this!!!)