When we were planning our year in France, I somehow had this sort of impression that we would spend a lot of time in Paris. Like maybe a weekend every two months or so. After all, it was within just a couple hours’ reach. But after we got here and started to explore more of the Loire Valley, taking roadies out to the coast of Brittany and Normandy, it sort of faded into the background. France is so VAST and there is just so much to see. We have quite literally just scratched the surface as we approach the ten months’ mark of living here. There is practically a whole country we have left unseen. But this time, it seems, has been more about touching on many small places and seeing what we could, I suppose. Lingering where we wanted and moving on as we pleased. And of course we are living here, the kids in school and Derek working. We have done our best to travel as much as possible, but there are limits (unfortunately!). All the same, this past ten months our travel list seems to have grown as quickly as we’ve ticked things off the list. The world is a wonderful place, isn’t it?
I feel the same way about Paris. My goodness we have barely seen the bare minimum. One day, we will come and spend a couple weeks simply wandering the never-ending streets and revelling in all the beauty lurking around every corner. And still I will not be finished.
In any case, we planned a while back to spend a couple of days at Disney. Like it or not, we had promised the kids a trip to the magic kingdom, and we held to it. Don’t get me wrong, I love Disney. I’m not one of those parents who dreads taking their kids there, we went to Disneyland in California two years ago and we had the absolute best time. But this is France! Why go to Disney?! I’ll save that story for the next blog post.
As it was, spending one extra day in Paris was at our fingertips, so we took advantage of it. We stayed on the outskirts and popped into the city for just the day. We covered a heck of a lot of ground, and we loved showing the kids a few corners that Derek and I visited on our weekend there alone. We also headed up to the top of the Eiffel Tower, a bucket list item for Oliver, who’d been dreaming of it since we first mentioned France a couple years ago.
On the agenda for the day were Sacré Coeur, the streets of Montmartre, Le Jardin du Palais Royale, and the Eiffel Tower. It was freezing cold and rather grey, but thankfully we had barely a tiny drizzle. The magnolias were just starting to pop around town, and the beauty of spring in Paris was just beginning.
Le Jardin du Palais Royale was a standout for me. I don’t know why we hadn’t been before?! It is absolutely lovely, a serene corner right in the middle of the city. I can only imagine when the magnolias are fully popped and the trees bursting with fresh green leaves, but all the same it already smelled of springtime. The kids loved playing amongst the striped pillars, and I found a quiet spot to sit in a chair with a quote that totally spoke to me (below).
It has taken me over a month to get around to posting these photos, we were there way back on march 19! I have some more catching up to do with the blog, including our awesome two weeks in Scandinavia in early April. Literally, for me, the trip of my dreams. But first, a few more pics from that blustery March day spent in Paris. We knew this day would be our last in the City of Light this year. And it was a really, really good day.
Paris, I think this is the beginning of a life long love affair. I didn’t understand it before this year, why people loved this city so much. I mean — I had an idea, but you really can’t get it until you’re actually there. Every corner, every building, every view. And the light! Oh, the light. Paris is under my skin and in my heart, and I really can’t wait to be back someday.