Just Singing in the Rain

Well, here we are.  Rain, rain, go away.  Come again another day.

Yesterday was sort of boring!!  The tower Eiffel, the Champs Elysees.  Ho hum.

I’m pretty sure we walked about 10 miles yesterday.  We also conquered the metro.  We think it helps to be rested and well planned.

The other big event was going to the Charles De Gaulle airport.  We met our new french friends there to return the car.  It was great to see them and meet one of their daughters.  She had been in Rhode Island ahead of CA visit, so we missed her when they first arrived to the U.S.  To show you how stylish the french women are, Martine (mom) bought a pair of red cowboy boots after having gone to the rodeo at the Mid-State Fair in Paso Robles!!  They were beautiful.  Their daughter bought a brown pair as well.

We made sure they got to experience the “Jackson Effect”.  When we arrived at the airport, we had no idea what terminal they were arriving in because the french airport people did not post which airline was assigned at which terminal.   In order to find out, we deduced that we had to ask.  In order to ask, we parked in free 10 minute parking across a roadway from terminal two.  Luckily, they were arriving in terminal two.  Oh, I digress.  In order to get the 10 minutes of free parking, you had to get a ticket.  When you leave the parking, you put the ticket in and they give you your ticket back as the arm swings up.  After leaving that free parking, we then found our way to the short term parking which required a separate ticket.  I dropped that ticket on the floor.

When we went to leave, we needed the ticket to pay the parking.  The ticket wouldn’t work at the machine.  So Ray and Rachid went to the car to look for another ticket.  They came back with it and it wouldn’t work.  So, off we all went (7 of us) to find the another ticket.    About this time, I’m feeling very old and inadequate.  What they must be thinking.  Something along the line of perhaps, “and we let them use our car for a month?  and our house?”.    Well, it turns out that one of the tickets was from the car park earlier in the day.  One ticket was from the 10 minute parking and the last ticket was THE TICKET.      Mystery solved.  Jackson’s totally embarrassed.  However, we all got a chuckle out of it, except I think their chuckles included a bit of nervous twitter as well.  So they all piled in and drove away.  We walked half way back to Paris looking for the train station and took the train in.  We had an 8:30 dinner reservation at a charming , small restaurant and dragged ourselves in at 9, perfectly willing to grovel for a table.

At dinner we sat next to a British couple and had a great conversation about how the government is allowing the banks to borrow from the Fed at 0%, making beaucoup bucks, but then withholding loans for small business.  And the same bankers that had to be bailed out are still in their jobs etc.  They said the same thing was happening in England and they were very concerned for their children.  The rest of the conversation revolved about golf and food and wine!!!  Fun dinner.

The rain doesn’t stop anyone here.  They are thinking it’s summer and wearing all manner of shoes.  Flip flops were on many feet.  I had on my Eccos and after about mile 8, my feet were hurting.  So even though showers are predicted again today (I was too tired to write last nite), I’m wearing sandals without socks.  It’s my only alternative.

Regarding scarves.  The french are known for their scarves, both femmes y hommes (women and men).  Returning from France without a scarf or two seemed, well, sinful.  So, we went on a mission for a scarf or two.  First stop was Au Bon Marche, the fabulous Parisian store designed by Eiffel, of Eiffel Tower fame.  The least expensive scarf we found was 200 euro.  Bottom line, I’m without a scarf.  The only thing in that store that we could afford was lunch and that is where we ate.  Espresso and the view while lunching.

The store and their button library.  Never seen a button library before.  Below see Ray and his new femme ami (lady friend).

Then it was on to Champs Elysees.

We came across this in the Renault showroom.  Wow.  Very impressive.

This is the one seater on the right (above) and pictures of our tiny room below.

Finally, the starter for dinner.  Baked camembert with almonds and honey.  And the salad.  I took pity on Ray for ordering so much cheese and helped him eat it.

The other picture is our waiter trying to retrieve something from on high.  It illustrates that the only thing smaller than our room is the restaurant.  Also, isn’t he cute?

We didn’t get back to hotel until almost midnight.  Then my work began.  I had to try and fix a problem of paying our credit card bill on-line.  I tried to pay it on 8/4 and that’s when things went wrong.  And ever since then when I’ve had access, I’ve tried to fix things.  Well, now I was down to the wire.  The bill is due on 8/18 and last night it was  8/16.  We called from de Gaulle and tried to get things done.  But Murphy’s law struck.  So, we sat in the lobby and tried to get things done because it was on 2:30 p.m. in the states.  We didn’t get a reply so went to bed exhausted and frustrated with the wired world.  I woke up at 3:30 a.m. in Paris with another idea.  I pursued it until I ran up against another brick wall.  And at 4:30 a.m. I finally gave up.

Ah, the pleasures of travel.

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