Monthly Archives: May 2011

Eiffel

The Eiffel Tower or La Tour Eiffel  is one of the most-visited paid monuments in the world and for a just cause. Originally viewed as an eyesoar, the city planned to tear it down after 20 years; however its utilization for communication purposes kept the structure standing. If you fancy a meal within this French icon, there are two restaurants within the tower. If not, you can always purchase some champagne from the Champagne Bar at the top (more like a cute little closet where an employee sells bubbly in plastic cones) or some snacks on the second level (hot chocolate comes in handy when there is a bit of wind chill). All in all, the journey all the way to the top is worth the wait, even if you hate long lines. The 360º view should be experienced in person. So put this place on your bucket list of places to go or things to see.

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Filed under France, Travel

Weekly Appreciation

This week has consisted of lots of “new” things, but not in a greedy way (no worries). I am lacking in photos this week so I will go ahead and make a list of my appreciations. One: taking salsa class taught by one extremely talented friend. Two: meeting new people at a botellón while singing along to a guitar. Three: looking at old photos with family from afar. Four: being able to share my love for dress-wearing among a group of men at a stag party. And five: finding an awesome magazine combo-pack with free sandals (heck yes! you have to get excited about little things sometimes). As you can see, I am easily amused. But easily amused means constant smiles. No complaints here. Enjoy your weekend! Do something crazy; it feels like a crazy sort of weekend.

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Using Their Voice

Thousands of people have protested the high unemployment rates and the Spanish government’s measure in banning the right to protest before local elections. Police were given the orders not to disperse the crowds.  The protestors, most of them young, have been demanding a “real democracy.” In Puerto del Sol (where these photos were taken),  people slept in tents, on mattresses, or on any random furniture that made its way to the square. Rallies took place in cities across Spain including Palma, Sevilla, Barcelona, Valencia, Bilbao, and Galicia. This event was something I simple encountered on a walk home; however it is reminder, at least in my mind, that your voice can have power, especially in masses. Just look at all the protests that have occurred throughout the world. This past year has stirred up quite a bit.

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French Pastries

It’s not a lie, the French can bake. I am certain I came very close to eating my body weight in pastries during my last visit to Paris. It is estimated that Parisians consume around 79g of bread a day. If I lived there, I think I would fall under the above average category. If the smell doesn’t drag you in, the taste will. With boulangeries in every neighborhood, delectable baguettes, croissants, pain au chocolat, macaron,  petit four,  canelé, pain aux raisins, etc. come across your path multiple times a day. How can you resist?

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Bridge of Lovers

Lock your love and throw away the key into the depths of a dark river to be adorned as a symbol of your love in one of the most romantic cities in the world. That is exactly what thousands of couples have done on the Ponts de Arts, Passerelle Léopold-Sédar-Senghor, and Ponte de l’Archevêché bridges in Paris.  Chain linked fences are decorated with all sorts of locks engraved with the couples’ names. It is romantic moment to share with your loved one and revisit time and time again. Some locks are extravagant, others are modest, and a couple are a bit unconventional (I think the couples who used bike locks/combination locks either are swingers or might have missed the concept). All in all, it is a beautiful act of vandalism.

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Best View of Paris

Perfectly white cauliflower clouds contrast the bright blue sky as their migration temporarily shadows parts of the beautiful city called Paris. The Siene River cuts through the memorizing maze of neighborhoods that houses quaint dwellings, little boulangeries, and specialty shops that sustain the lives of thousands. The city seems pure; the streets seem clean. All the people are the same. There is no distinction between French or foreigner, male or female. They are all people wandering around below living their life, relaxing in the park, dodging through traffic. No judgment, no bias, just beauty. This is the serenity you can feel from one of the most beautiful views of Paris: the top of the Eiffel Tower.

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Weekly Appreciation

This week’s weekly appreciation is simple. After a long weekend away in Paris, I was thankful that I didn’t miss my second flight despite the nearly 3 hour train adventure to the Charles de Gaulle airport even though it included a recreation of a scene from Home Alone as I sprinted through the terminal to just barely catch my flight. The next morning was followed the much needed but energizing solo espresso to be concluded by a relaxing night watching movies and playing a little guitar. Sometimes a little R&R is necessary after a vacation.

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