Paris Adventures (part 1)

October 2005



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² Eurostar to Paris ²

Early Tuesday morning we said goodbye to Ralph The Cat and we all climbed into a mini-van taxi for the long ride

across London to Waterloo station to catch the Eurostar train to Paris.


We loved the ride!  We saw lots of buses and taxis, and we even went right past Big Ben (Jeremy happily shouted

“Hello Big Ben” and then squirmed around in his seat trying to get one more view of Big Ben out the back window

of the cab as we sped across the bridge over the River Thames).

While we waited for the train in Waterloo station, Jeremy,

in his role as Ambassador Moomie, went around happily introducing himself to his fellow travelers.

  Then it was time to board the train!

 Jeremy watched out the window at the Eurostar train bound for Brussels on the other side of the platform, asking which train would leave first.


Ours was the first to go, and we were off for Paris!  Jeremy waved goodbye to London outside the window

of the train (“Bye bye London, bye Big Ben”), while Alex investigated the buttons for the reading lights.

We were Very Excited when the train went into the tunnel under the English Channel. 

The 20-minute ride under the Channel was even better than the drive through Eisenhower Tunnel

on the way to Denver (Jeremy is a big fan of tunnels!).

As we rode across the French countryside Alex played trains with his Thomas the Tank dominos while Stella and Jeremy felt inspired to create Art…


And then Conductor Jeremy popped up to announce that we are arriving at the Gare du Nord in Paris! 





² Arriving in Paris on 'Black Tuesday' ²

           Paris is VERY EXCITING! 

The newspapers are calling today “Black Tuesday” – the entire country is on strike.

A huge protest rally and march is massing at the Place de la Républic, right next to our apartment!

The Police blocked off all streets leading to towards the Place de la Républic, so the taxi had to drop us many blocks from our apartment. We had to drag our bags through the streets.  What an adventure!


After we settled into our very nice apartment we set off to buy some food for dinner.  Mummy went into the neighborhood butcher’s shop to buy roasted chicken (which Mummy called poulet rôti), and we picked up some cheese (which Daddy called “fromage”) and some wine (which Daddy called “vin”).  It is very confusing having two words for everything! No wonder everyone is protesting.


We also got some French cookies.

Alex likes French cookies! 

Then we went back to watch the angry protesters who were marching and chanting and singing and burning things all the way from Place de la Républic to the Bastille.



Daddy told us about how, when he lived in Paris, whenever he heard there was a big protest at the Place de la Républic he would hop on the Métro and race up there to watch. We never imagined that we would get to see a big Parisian protest!


When we saw this part of the protest we invented a chant of our own creation: “Fries and nuggets, Fries and nuggets, Yummy Yummy Yummy”. We don't think the protesters like McDonalds, but we do!!


(We asked what the word "Merde" means, but Mummy and Daddy wouldn't tell us.

We think it is a Naughty Word. 

Next time we see Uncle Todd we'll ask him!)


There is a playground just next to where the marchers were going past where we played for a while. (Jeremy thinks he might like to be a protester!  He likes marching and chanting and waving things!)


Then we went back to our apartment for dinner.  We were very, VERY tired.


After dinner, Mummy and Daddy and Auntie Harriet went for a walk while we slept. They strolled over to the Place des Voges and then to the Bastille. 

They are very happy to be in Paris again.



² Les Jardins du Luxembourg ²

It turns out that there is much more to Paris than strikes and protest marches!

On Wednesday morning we left our apartment in the 11th Arrondisement near the Place de la Républic and climbed on board a green Paris bus. (We love riding on buses; even single-decker buses.) We rode down to the Rue de Rivoli and past the Hôtel de Ville. Daddy explained that it wasn't really a hotel, it is the city hall for Paris. But we were much more excited about the fountains in the plaza. Alex excitedly pointed out that water was coming out of the faces of the lions!

The bus then went over TWO bridges across the River Seine and through the part of the Left Bank where Daddy spent so much time when he lived here. We eventually got off the bus near Saint Placide. Jeremy cried a bit (he doesn't like any adventure to end – he kept asking hopefully through his tears "More métro bus?"), but then Mummy explained we were going to a big park and he cheered right up.

We walked down a narrow street which ended in the gates to the enormous Jardins du Luxembourg. It was a beautiful fall day and the park is blanketed in a carpet of chestnut tree leaves. Chestnuts are everywhere on the ground (Mummy calls them "conkers"). We collected lots for our pockets! It reminded Daddy of the kind of autumn day when he first arrived in Paris after living in Biarritz.

In one part of the park is the most amazing children’s playground – the best we've ever seen (and we've seen lots!).

Alex ran excitedly from one adventure to the next, while Jeremy found one he particularly liked (a giant contraption of ladders and bridges and slides) and climbed it over & over again. The sign said that it was only for children who are seven years or older -- but since Jeremy can't read yet the sign didn't apply to him. (Jeremy did announce at one point that he is no longer Monkey Boy of Aspen, he is now Monkey Boy of Paris.)


Just when we thought Paris couldn't be any more fun, Mummy & Daddy asked if we wanted to go on a Parisian merry-go-round. Bien sûr, we all shouted!


At first we were a little nervous, because we've never ridden all alone on a merry-go-round… but after it started up we decided it was the very best thing we've ever done!


HOORAY for Parisian merry-go-rounds!!



As we were leaving the Jardins to return to the apartment for lunch, Jeremy spotted the Wells Fargo Wagon (he is obsessed with The Music Man at the moment), so Mummy decided lunch could wait while we went for a ride through the Jardins. WE LOVED THE RIDE!! (Note the French idea of safety belts.)


After the ride was over, Alex said "merci!" to the nice man who led the horse around the Jardins (though it comes out sounding like "mousie" when he says it). Jeremy was upset because he had forgotten to say "mousie" to the nice man,

so we had to go back so he too could use his new French word.

But the cool rides weren't over! We rode the metro back to the apartment! Alex was very excited about putting Daddy’s little blue ticket into the guichet and then waiting for it to pop out the other end. He told us when the train was coming out of the tunnel into the station, and insisted on sitting by himself in his very own seat on the train.


We love Paris!

To see page 2 of our Paris adventures, click here...





 updated 08/05/07