Wednesday, June 19, 2019

je t'aime, tour eiffel

with our disney paris extravaganza behind us, we slept in the next morning.  actually, we didn't just sleep in...we pretty much spent the entire day alternating between dozing and chatting.  the long days of walking and sightseeing had caught up to us and we were just exhausted.  like, we didn't even emerge from the room until damn near 4 in the afternoon.  i don't usually like to spend that much time in the hotel room on vacation because there's always so much to see and do, but obviously my body was crying out for some rest, so i gave it to her.  we had the window open and enjoyed the fresh air and the sounds of paris below us:


the weather was perfect.  it was a nice change from the clouds we'd had the day before, and with the forecast in the 70s all day, we were ready to get out and do some exploring.  we were fully rested and skipped the elevator, taking the stairs down to the lobby level.


we peeked in the dining room to see if there was anything interesting in there.  while the hub grabbed a glass of water, we checked out this contraption that dispenses wine.  kinda cool, right?


outside, we strolled past all sorts of shops - seafood, cheese, produce, bakeries.  everything was so colorful and displayed so nicely.


we managed to find our way into a huge department store that had this on the ground level (no, we didn't stop this time).


and because the hub is a closet instagram addict, he pulled up directions that led us to this popular photo op spot:


the U.S. embassy building.


just down the street from that was a christian louboutin store.  we always get a kick out of eyeballing their wares, so we went in.  and we weren't the only ones, because there were a few people waiting in line to go upstairs.  i stood in the line while the hub sat down and caught up on a few emails.


back outside, we passed what we dubbed "the french white house."  president macron was apparently hosting some officials and the street was blocked off to traffic.  we stood at the end of the street while the hub checked out the map on his phone, and i stealthily snapped this while the cops weren't looking.  funny though, as soon as i did they approached the hub and asked us to move along because they thought he was taking pictures.  oops.


i seriously can never get enough of looking at the eiffel tower.



we heard a weird buzzy kind of noise overhead and when we looked up, we realized there was someone ziplining right over us.  crazy.  i looked it up and it was a promotion by perrier that coincided with the french open.  you had to enter via their instagram page and then they drew names at random to experience the 55mph ride at 375 feet in the air.  nope nope nope.  you have to look really closely at the tower pic, but you can totally see where the zipline is set up.


as we continued to walk aimlessly, we found ourselves across the street from the hotel we'd stayed at with the girls.  and we were hungry, so we decided to grab a table at one of the cafes we'd eaten at with them.


i hadn't had any coffee that day, so i ordered up a nice cold cola to wash down our burrata salad and charcuterie plate.



another peek at the tower as we walked.  it's still so crazy to me that this was almost 10:00 at night:


and then we stopped on the bridge watching the river cruises glide by.


i'd forgotten that this happens every night at 10:00.   i kind of missed being able to see it from our hotel room window.



caught another glimpse of the champs elysees before grabbing an uber back to the hotel.


it was a short and sweet stroll, but we managed to make the most of the time we had left in that day.

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

disneyland paris, part 2

we had park hopper tickets for our day at disneyland paris, so once we'd gotten our fill of the disneyland side we headed over to walt disney studios next door.




captain marvel was there to greet us as we went inside.


you go through this building that's themed to look like old hollywood, and all of the facades are really fun.  there's lots of shops and a food court there.



and then you walk out and find yourself looking at a replica of the "storytellers" statue that's also at disneyland california.


the last time we were here, it was pouring rain.  while it was cloudy for most of our visit this time, at least we didn't get wet.  their entire cars land area was closed for refurbishment, though.


they have a toy story playland here, and it's super cute.  it was a lot more crowded than last time though, and the slinky dog ride i remembered was also closed for refurbishment.  oh well.


this is what i really wanted to do, though - the ratatouille attraction opened not long after our first visit and i was excited to ride it.  the standby line was really long though, so the hub and i got into the single rider line instead.  we wouldn't get to ride together, but that's okay.



it reminded me of the transformers ride at universal studios - a mix of a virtual reality attraction with a bit of movement in the cute little mouse-shaped cars.  and it ends with a peek inside the bistrot chez remy restaurant.  it was a really fun ride, and i knew the old lady (who adores this movie) would have loved it.  i took video during the ride to share with her, although since you're wearing 3D glasses for it i knew the video wouldn't be the greatest.  she liked it anyway, and hopefully one day she'll get to ride it for herself.




i was also pretty excited to see this:


while i like the guardians of the galaxy ride we now have instead at california adventure, the tower of terror will always have a place in my heart.  and since the hub enjoys this ride too, i knew he'd be cool with waiting in line for it.  i loved seeing the familiar set-up as we went through the queue.




 you can kind of see us in the top left corner, if you squint just right.


next up was the studio tram tour.  i wasn't sure what we'd see here, but at least it was a ride where we could sit for a bit.


just as i'd anticipated, there wasn't much.  it was just long enough to rest our feet for a little while.



the ratatouille ride had given the hub a headache and he was pretty much over waiting in line, so i ended up waiting for my last ride of the day solo.  he headed off to the starbucks in the disney village outside the park while i went here:


the old lady and i had fond memories of this ride, and so it was the only thing left that i really wanted to do.  and i definitely paid the price as i waited a full hour in line for it.  but it's such a great ride, and it's more exciting than it sounds.  you sit in these turtle shells that spin around randomly, and it's just really fun.  there's even a cute little model of it outside, so you can decide if you want to ride it or not:



on my way out i passed this monsters inc. themed area that the bean had enjoyed last time:


and then that was it.  au revoir, disneyland paris!  merci beaucoup!


we walked through the disney village just so i could check it out, and while i would've loved a drink from starbucks the line was ridiculously long.


there was an equally long line for this:


and by then it was almost time to meet up with our driver for our ride back to paris.  as we walked to our meeting spot we passed the train station we'd been to with the girls when we were here before.  it's right outside the gates, and an easy way to get here if you don't have a car.


back at the hotel les matins de paris, we'd been moved to our upgraded room.  and it was most definitely an upgrade - about twice the size of the first room with a bigger bed and way more space to move around in.


we decided to walk down the street to have dinner at one of the bazillion cafes, and shared some burrata and steak frites.  so delicious.


it was a lovely way to end our long day, and we both passed out pretty hard once we got back to the hotel.  we were averaging at least 15,000 steps every day so far...not bad, right?
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