After a healthy nap, we felt refreshed enough to unpack and put up our bags in our tiny apartment. Once done, we headed out for a late afternoon stroll. The Eiffel Tower was our destination, and I squealed like a five-year-old when I rounded a corner and spotted it for the first time, not gonna lie.
Presale reservation tickets to climb to the top of the Eiffel had already sold out when we began planning our trip, but we’d both made the climb as teens so decided to take a pass this trip. As we basked in the shadow of the tower and eyed the waiting crowd, our choice was reaffirmed. Relaxing on the lawn was the much better idea.
So we claimed a patch of grass for our own and soaked the atmosphere- watching the other tourists, declining to purchase trinkets, and just talking. We broke out the selfie stick, but weren’t concerned in the least about getting good pictures with the tower- we’d be taking care of that later in the week.
Kids at heart, we contemplated the carousel, but again, line, and I’ll be honest that it was a bit in disrepair. We chose to walk near the Seine for a little while instead, before we headed underground to the metro.
We had a lovely walk upon emerging in Alesia, headed to our new friend Jim’s house for dinner. We’d first heard of Jim Haynes and his Sunday suppers on NPR, and then my friend Julie, who visited on her honeymoon, recommended it as well. A bit of an unplugged situation, we put up the camera with our coats and enjoyed the conversation and company.
The precious garden past the gate and the accompanying cottage soon filled with interesting new friends: a few locals interspersed with people from Berlin and Nigeria, Tokyo and Toronto, Austin and Amsterdam, San Francisco and St Tropez. Can’t leave out charming Jim himself, a Louisiana boy who’s been living in Paris and hosting these salons for fifty to a hundred people weekly for thirty years. It was a lovely evening- very French, friendly and intimate. We enjoyed a scrummy homecooked bœuf bourguignon and delicious apple galette, and drank wine and visited late into the night.