Sunday, May 08, 2005

J'arrive

I am in Paris. I'm not going to have time to do anything really since I just arrived tonight and tomorrow et Mardi I have work and then am back to London Tuesday evening staight from the office. Janelle and I may come in for a weekend soon so I can do a few of the touristy things that I won't have time for the next few days. Getting a cab was a breeze at the airport, although a man behind me tried to jump the queue. I just used my body language and luggage to non-verbally suggest that he step back bitch. The area around Charles De Gaulle approaching Paris is terribly industrial and then you see up high on a hill the Sacrè Coer. It was built as a memorial to 58,000 soldiers that died during the Franco Prussian war. Completed in 1923, it took 46 years to build. I can just see it from my Montmartre hotel room window. I am staying at the Hotel Mercure Paris Ronceray right near the Jouffroy Passage. Passages are covered arcades built in the end of the 18th Century to shelter shoppers from the elements. Just at the end of the passage is the Hotel Chopin which my room faces. Had dinner in a cafe down the way from the hotel and the waiter was lovely, not the least bit rude. A cab driver even waved to me to cross a crosswalk (zebra crossing for you uk readers). I took French in college but little brain has only retained a few phrases like, "My name is. . ." and "what time is it?" I did use "Ça va" on the taxi driver which made him happy. (It's a shorthand way to ask, "how are you?") In any case, I have managed to not get lost and have a yummy meal of vin rouge, escargot, boeuf, salade et gâteau de chocolat. Je suis heureux. Because I am a talented girl, I forgot to pack my hairbrush, toothbrush and toothpaste. I did wander into a little convenience store that had a toothbrush and paste but no hairbrush. My hair may look interesting tomorrow but at least my breath won't stink. Tomorrow I stumble to the Paris office where I am certain they really don't care for me to be there. The Munich and UK teams were all new starters while the team here are all veterans. It will be interesting.

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