Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Paris madness

Let me just start off by saying that people in Paris don't think when they drive. If you ever plan to go to Paris, don't drive unless you happen to be suicidal. The traffic is atrocious, not helped by the fact that there is 12 million people in greater Paris and that their appears to be no road rules and certainly no lane markings. Only in Paris do they have one of the world's busiest round about's (The Arc de Triomphe) with 12 exits, and create a road rule that creates chaos. Instead of the normal rule where you give way to people on the round about, you give way while ON the round about to people coming onto it.
Parisians are erratic drivers anyway, they just drive and then think, they park where they please, and their main form of driving communication is honking and waving fists. About 50% of Parisians seem to drive scooters (a wise choice if you ask me) and the other half drive smart cars and citrons.

However this is not a blog about Paris traffic. We did actually do other things in Paris beside sit in traffic (although sometimes it didn't feel like it). The first night we were there we went to the famous Lido cabaret on the Champs-Elysees. Stunning show, and just when you think you have seen everything a horse comes on stage, then an ice skating rink, then an Egyptian pyramid. Amazing and definitely one of the best things we did there. After the show we saw the Eiffel tower with its lights on at night. I would say its definitely prettier at night.

The next day we took in the sights of Paris, Notre Dame,  Eiffel tower again, the Lourve, the Val-de-Grace (where Napoleon is buried) and Concorde square (where Louie the 16th and Marie Antointete were beheaded).

That afternoon we went to the Palace of Versailles. The palace has 2000 rooms and was the home to King Louie the 14th. He was a bit full of himself, he is depicted in almost every room. The palace itself was enormous, really was very over the top inside, most rooms were made of marble. The grounds though were stunning, and probably the better bit. They cover several hundred acres themselves. The first picture shows the smaller side. The second picture shows the gardens at the back of the castle. If you look at the horizon of the picture, the fuzzy blue stripe (it was raining) in the middle of the bushes is actually the canals of the gardens. Google probably has better photos, ones that weren't taking in the pouring rain.

So now we are in Bordeaux. Much nice city personally than Paris, about 400,000 people here. My French is improving, I can now converse with about five words. Turns out that's all you need really, that and lots of pointing and weird gesticulations. 

1 comment:

  1. Aw! You guys are in Bordeaux!!! I love Bordeaux....such a beautiful wee town. I spent a week there back in 2007.