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Posts from the ‘Paris’ category

Home – Reality Bites

Well folks this will be our final post for our Camino 2013 adventure. We arrived home safe and sound late on Friday evening. It’s bitter sweet on many levels, but it is very nice being reunited with our loved ones, both human and furry!

What can we say? It was definitely a trip of a lifetime, one we will cherish and never forget. Although, we were tactfully reminded by a good friend on our arrival home of a missing 20km from our Camino pilgrimage and were asked what are we going to tell our grandchildren in later years? “We nearly completed the Camino!” (Thanks Mark!)

What we can say is that we have thoroughly enjoyed sharing our experiences with all our followers. You have encouraged and inspired us with emails and comments during our trip that has kept us accountable to put up a blog each day that we will now benefit from as a journal of our trip for the years to come.

We do want to thank all our family and friends for your encouragement and kind words via emails and comments. We have had many laughs along the way with you all. We want to personally acknowledge Phillip and Thierry for their fantastic itineraries, maps and support they gave us for Paris, Venice and Rome. We got so much more out of these wonderful places with the information provided acknowledging that some of these were put together in the wee hours of the morning ready for us when we awoke for the next instalment!

Thanks to our avid followers Anne and Daniel for putting up with us for a couple of evenings in Torino. We thoroughly enjoyed your company and enjoyed our personal tour of Torino. Our first real taste of Italy! (Gelato and Alpha Romeo’s!)

To Jeff and Sue, Paul and Jacky, it was great to take some time out in beautiful Tuscany to celebrate Sue’s 50th. We had some great laughs together and are now very jealous of you all as you continue on your holidays while we are now stuck at home in Melbourne winter! We can now only watch the Tour de France on TV and pretend we are there with you. We will be looking out for an Australian flag!

How can we not mention the leader of Blog comments “Mark”. You have made us laugh and we have looked forward to your witty comments. You inspired the 3 Aussie Bums photo to solicit a comment out of you and we weren’t disappointed!

And finally a big thanks to our girls for not killing each other or destroying our house. We are very proud of you both and now know we can take off anytime and know you will survive!

It’s now time to put together our 10,000 photos for a monster slideshow. So watch out, if you are not careful you could get invited over for a private viewing and commentary – a slow and painful death!

But more importantly, it’s time to plan our next adventure. How are we going to top this one off? (Maybe go back and complete the Camino in its entirety?)

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Paris – The city of love (Day 5)

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!)

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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…

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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!)

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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!!!

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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!

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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!

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Ok, just a sneak preview… (It just doesn’t get any better than this!!!)

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Paris – Picture Perfect (Day 4)

We woke up to a stunning sunny morning. Another slow start by the local Parisians! Checked our itinerary and signed relief to see we were going to have a slower day more in line with the locals!
Headed off to a local Cafe and ordered Coffee and Baguettes. Ordinary Coffee, but the Baguette made up for it!

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Our first major attraction was a visit to Notre-Dame. We were humbled by its shear splendour and being a Sunday were treated to a Mass.

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Then off to the much smaller, but stunning stain glass windowed Sainte Chapelle.

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Then

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Then we strolled through a number of streets soaking up the relaxed Sunday atmosphere along with the many Parisians out and about with the warmer weather.

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We finished off the afternoon with fresh Strawberry’s sitting in a park nearby. Out for dinner tonight!
More Photo’s

From Paris with Love

Just a big thank you to all that are following and have emailed us and posted comments on our Blog. We are encouraged by your good wishes and support. We will endeavour to continue posting, even if it is at 1:00am in the morning! With our love and thanks…

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