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Old 09-17-2013, 11:34 PM   #241
pkondz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buzz1121 View Post
Cripes! It's already freezing there? Okay, absolutely no kidding, here's a little Buzz's dad trivia. My dad routinely grows yellow squash through a portion of November here. Once it hits freezing, bye bye squash.

It was 80 here today, kind of a cool run, pretty sure it will be back in the 90s again soon.
Well, if we don't have snow on the ground in November, it's a rarity. We did warm back up... but the nights are getting a tad chilly

Quote:
Originally Posted by buzz1121 View Post

And gee, I don't know whether to say Thanks for the Wunderbars or just bark.....like a good girl!
My first thought was Caddyshack... but I don't think that's appropriate for these boards! So, I'll do this instead:

Bark.....like a good girl

Quote:
Originally Posted by buzz1121 View Post
I love the last one, beautiful! I broke up leisure just like you suggested, before I read your suggestion. I like the extreme breakdown as well and we are using it. Foreign is tough for exactly the reason you posted....the silent "g". It's giving DS the toughest time. One more night to prep before the pre-test!
How about "Gee! pkondz is foreign and I wish he'd be quiet just like the 'g' at the end of foreign."

Quote:
Originally Posted by buzz1121 View Post
Yep, can you, Ruby, Elle, and Kay make the party?
Here's the truth. I couldn't remember exactly where you lived, so I went back to my PMs to find your address. After that I plotted it out on Google maps... and it came out to about 25 hours of driving.


So.... No.


But if you were even halfway closer....


Quote:
Originally Posted by buzz1121 View Post
Tee-hee!!

Pkondz does not equal coconut! Guess I need to dispose of these macaroons!
Macarons =

Macaroons =


Oh, BTW. Does anyone want a new chapter?
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Old 09-18-2013, 08:44 AM   #242
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Originally Posted by buzz1121 View Post
Cripes! It's already freezing there? Okay, absolutely no kidding, here's a little Buzz's dad trivia. My dad routinely grows yellow squash through a portion of November here. Once it hits freezing, bye bye squash.

It was 80 here today, kind of a cool run, pretty sure it will be back in the 90s again soon.


?
Funny time of year. Here in Toronto it should reach 80 by the end of the week. And we had two days that were in the 90s last week and then suddenly is was 55. It can be all over the place.

**Just wanted to add that since many Americans, and others, get it in their head that our weather is so unlike many of their northern states. And yes I know Winnipeg and Toronto are very different too.
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Old 09-18-2013, 09:08 AM   #243
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Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Oh, BTW. Does anyone want a new chapter?
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Old 09-18-2013, 11:07 AM   #244
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I apologize for my tardiness...However, having to deal with 8th graders this week, plus the craziness of real life...I am hoping to get this in under the wire before I have to start the breakdown of the next chapter...so here we go:

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
No! Not that! Anything but <shudder> that!
no! rien mais qui

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Whoa. It's almost like I've typed this entire chapter before!
It happens to the best Ponzi.

On another note…Never even knew there was a movie by that name…

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
I think we arrived in Paris about 9:30am (2:30am Central time) so by now we (well, Kaitlyn and I) have been up for about 22 hours.
Only? Sounds sort of like my college days…I’m sure a few more hours won’t kill ya. Look at me…Er…nevermind.


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Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
All we have to do now is go through customs, grab our bags and hit the city!
Paris awaits!!!!
I called ahead of time and told them to put everything on hold until you got there. As of this moment, people were still in the streets or in their offices or in their houses at a complete standstill waiting for the Ponzi family…



Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
So while the folks with TB (tiny bladders) use the facilities; six thousand, four hundred and twenty seven arriving passengers pass me by.
You must have been delirious, if you counted all 6,427 of them, However, you forgot to count the ghosts that followed the passengers…so you’ll have to go back and re-count, sorry.


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Eventually, the ladies re-join me and we head off in search of customs.
Ah. There it is.
And look! There's only a moderately long line! Let's get in it!
I’m not good in moderately long lines. Short lines, fine. Really long lines, I’ll figure out a way to amuse myself. Moderately long lines…I’m at a loss. So you go ahead. I’ll wait over here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Whoops!
Whoops? Whoops? There’s no Whoops on vacation!!!!


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
That's just where the line turns the corner... the end of the line is over there...
Oh, well in that case, I’ll join ya.


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
wanna guess which line we were in?
oooh. I love guessing games. Um…Can you give me a clue? Can I phone a friend?


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
You know the drill, right? "Where are you from? What Nationality are you? How long will you be staying in Europe? Are you bringing in vast, copious amounts of cash? Are you bringing in any dairy, meats, vegetables, fruits, wine, women or song? Have you been on a farm in the past 30 days? Will you be visiting a farm? Do you have a criminal record or cassette or 8-track or CD or mp3? Have you ever taken the tag off a mattress? What is the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow. (European, of course) Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah...."
Seeing as I have never been through customs, I’ll take your word for it. The most I get around here is when we go to Las Cruces, NM and coming back , we have to go through a border patrol checkpoint, most of the time we get waved on through, every now and then, we get stopped and asked, “Are you American?” or “Where are you from?” As long as you don’t answer back with, “Si.” Or “Que dices?” You’ll be sent on through.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Except it didn't happen.
I handed our passports to the agent who stamped them, smiled (<shock>! Yes, he actually smiled!!), then handed them back to us. That was the whole thing.
Sounds like they are now hiring some of our border patrol agents…


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
You might think that LFPG... what? Everyone knows what MCO is, but you don't know LFPG?
Longest Flight Possible Gentlemen?!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
There's a Disney there too, ya know!
<Le Sigh> Probably won’t get to visit that in this lifetime.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Anyway, you might think that LFPG (Paris, Charles De Gaulle airport), being a major European hub and the gateway to arguably the most visited city in the world would be a marvel of automation and efficiency.
I try not to think…it hurts too much when you realize your thinking isn’t mainstream with other peoples…


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
You would be wrong.

See…I give up!


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
After passing through customs, we arrive in a room with numerous conveyor belts disgorging half eaten suitcases and partially masticated bags... And no clear way of discerning which belt is for which flight.
You mean to tell me there was no one around stating, “half eaten suitcases and partially masticated bags from flight 1154 over here!” “Half eaten suitcases and moderately masticated bags from flight 1411 over here!” Half pulverized, and completely shredded bags from flight 1089 over here!”

How rude! I mean that’s the least they could have done! But again…that’s my thinking and it always gets me in trouble.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Now granted, I was a little groggy, so I may have missed something oblivious...
Sometimes the most oblivious signs are missed by many! Obviously!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
but surely I can't be the only one?
You know, I could say, again, that this happens to everyone…but…I’m done lying for you Ponzi…It’s really just you this time.


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
After wandering around for a while demonstrating an amazing display of futility, I decide to ask at the long lost luggage desk, where an industrious civil servant is studiously avoiding any eye contact with desparate, helpless travellers.



Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Within short order, the belt barfs up the rest of our bags and we are on our way.
Ewww. Luggage vomit!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
The airport is a ways outside the city and you have a few choices on how you want to get there.

1. Take a cab. Easily the most expensive option unless you have a large group sharing the cost... with few bags. Not us.
2. Take a bus. Cheap... but slow.
3. Take a train. Our best bet.
Love trains, but my fear is I will miss my stop somewhere along the line. I am thankful that while taking the train to work everyday like I do, the ride is short enough where I don’t have the chance to nap or really get into a book or movie before having to get off. Otherwise I would end up in Belen, NM instead of Albuquerque…


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
We find the train platform... and there's two sets of tracks...
ummm.... which one do we use? I pick the one on the right pretty much at random.

We saw how well that worked out on the customs line…

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
I eventually see a sign saying that all trains from this platform are bound for Paris. Okay. <phew> Problem solved.

Got lucky there buddy!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post


Kay looks pretty happy, but I love the dude photobombing. Doesn't he look bagged?
He looks like he’s going to be sick! A lesson to your children. Don’t party, you’ll end up looking like this idiot on the train!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
We arrive in Paris at the Gare du Nord (North Train Station) about 30 minutes later. Now to get to our 'hotel' we have another three choices.
1. We can walk. It's about a half hour walk... with heavy suitcases.
2. We can take a cab. Parisian cabs are not for the faint of wallet.
3. We can take the metro to a nearby station and walk 5-10 minutes.
Too many choices, too little sleep!


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
The Paris Metro. Ya know what? I love it.
Its so easy to get anywhere. Trains come every 2-4 minutes. Just pick a spot and jump on the colour or number and go. Easy peasey. The map is confusing when you first look at it, but once youve traced out one route, its no problem.

Sure…easy peasey, he says…

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Kay and Elle hated it. They found it dirty and scary. I sometimes wonder if weve sheltered them a bit too much? Its a subway, not a Disney ride.
They are not sheltered, They are smart girls! Trust your instincts. And in regards to that Disney ride remark…even non-disney rides can make someone become a DW( dumb wife)…


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Ruby was okay with it. She did have a pickpocket stick his hand in her back pocket. She didn't have any money there, so no harm done. I think she thinks that a Parisian was trying to pinch her bum.
And you just let this Parisian “pinch her bum”?

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
I don't disabuse her of this assumption.
She has a silly grin on her face for the next few hours.

Dont know why.




Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
We were warmly greeted by Helene and her husband Jean-Louis. We arrived at their place about noon and our room would not be ready until 2pm (we knew this ahead of time). They gave us maps and booklets of Paris attractions, then left us alone while we enjoyed fresh croissants, baguette (long, crusty french bread) with jelly, fresh peaches, a bottle of water and later, a bottle of wine.
See…technically the other B in the B&B was accommodated…not technically breakfast but still…

I love baguette…Although most of the time I end up cutting it and toasting it in the over to make crustini for dips and for salad croutons.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
That's her 'mischievous' look. You can tell when she's going to do something evil, she does that look.
Uh oh…What did she do that was so mischievous?


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
The first one is that our room was on the top floor, three flights up... with no elevator. I was not looking forward to hauling all those bags up!
Reminded me of the trip we recently took for that memorial service, we stayed at one of the very few hotels they had in the area, and there are no elevators. Of course, we end up with a room on the second floor. Since we are staying only one night, we pack light. One bag for the clothes, my miscellaneous bag (for random things we forgot to throw in the clothes bag, and don’t want to bother repacking or taking out of the car to add), our cooler bag that we use to carry our coffee pot (includes coffee, coffee mugs, sugar. As well as the cutting board and knife, salt shaker and lime squeezer), and then the actual cooler, full of beer, sodas, water, cream for the coffee and ice…lots of ice. Luckily all these things, except for my misc. bag have wheels, so we can wheel them from the car to the bottom of the stairs. I take my misc. bag, and our clothes bag and lug them up to the top of the stairs. T-Man stops at the bottom, leaves the cooler holding the coffee pot, and lifts the other cooler and starts up the stairs. At this time, another family is coming in and headed up the stairs as well, directly behind T-Man. T-Man stops at the top of the stairs where I am holding the door open, He moves to the side, only because the mom of the family behind him is literally on his heels, and the family proceeds to walk right through the door I am holding. I am usually not one to hold my tongue anyway, so as the mother walks through, without saying a darn thing, I say “You’re welcome!” (Make sure when reading that you say it with the most sarcastic tone possible!) and of course, as the father and kids walk through, they all say Thank You. At that very moment, the mother turns around and looks at me and says “Was that directed to me?” I actually bit my tongue this time and didn’t even look her way, said you’re welcome to one of the kids who went through, and then continued to hold the door while T-Man went back down to get the other bag left at the bottom of the stairs. I was happy we didn’t see her the rest of the time we were there.

I said all that to basically say, I understand the yuck factor of having to carry luggage up stairs…


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
The second is that there's no air conditioning. We weren't bothered by it since we could leave the windows open all the time and there was a nice breeze to cool the room. But I could see it possibly being a problem if it was stinking hot with no breeze.
“Stinking” would definitely define the situation as a problem


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
At one o'clock, Jean-Louis returned and announced that our room was ready.
When I went to start schlepping our bags up.... they were gone!

Already being robbed and you just got there?!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
He had already taken them all up!
Oh thank goodness. That was very sweet of him by the way. I’m sure that wasn’t easy.


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Here's our room:
Parental units' bed


Kidlets' beds


Kitchen
That is a really nice place from the pictures. I’m glad you had such a great experience with the hotel first time out!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Behind the counter was a mini-bar fridge stocked with soft (and not-so-soft) drinks which were included in the cost of the room. No hidden bar bill!
Score! At least you don’t have to worry about not being able to touch anything on the mini-bar in case it gets triggered and you get charged! Every time we go to Vegas, we have to remind everyone not to touch anything!

Plus, after trudging your way through Paris and having to deal with men pinching your wife’s behind regularly on the train…you might need a lil’ somethin’ somethin’ later on…


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Even though we were dead tired, we freshened up and decided to see some nearby sights. Although it was now 6am back home, it's only 1pm here.
It’s like that on any vacation, once you get there, you get sort of a second wind, wanting to see what you can, while you can, even if your exhausted!


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
We head out... but not before the trials and tribulations of secure lodging are conquered!

To get into the apartment you must:
1. Enter a 7 digit code to pass through the green doors into the outer vestibule.
2. Use the square key to pass through the locked door to enter the inner vestibule.
3. Enter a 4 digit code to pass through the locked door to enter the outer courtyard.
4. Use the round key to pass through the locked door to enter the foyer.
5. Ascend two flights of spiral stairs.
6. Use the room key (an actual metal key! Not a plastic card that never, ever, no matter how much you pray and hope, retains it's code for more then a day.) to pass through the locked door that leads to the flight of spiral stairs that leads up to the loft/apartment where we collapse from the sheer labor of both mental and physical exertions.
Put your left hand in, take your left hand out, put your left hand in, and shake it all about…

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Repeat in reverse when leaving...
Um…Okay, if you say so…
…lla ti ekahs dna, ni dnah tfel ruoy tup, tuo dnah tfel ruoy ekat, ni dnah tfel ruoy tuP


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Here's the goyls ready for their first real look at Paris
Again, beautiful girls…make sure you keep that shotgun nearby!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Please note that while we made sure to get walking shoes for Kay, she chose to wear flip flops for this leg of the race.
Duly noted, although I have to say, that I probably would have done the same thing. I’m a glutton for punishment like that.


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Our first stop is the Basilica of Sacre Coeur (Sacred Heart). This church was built from 1876 to 1914. It was consecrated in 1919 after WWI. The church is located on the highest point in Paris and gleams white due to the fact that it's made of stones that react with rainwater so it basically bleaches itself.
Look at that…Educational and entertaining at the same time! I didn’t need 4 years of HS and 4 ½ years of College!


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
The view from up here, while quite nice, is missing an essential ingredient.



No Eiffel Tower. It's behind the trees to the right.
I hadn’t even thought about the Eiffel Tower…I’m still captivated by that view. Wow!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
I don't remember if we went in or not.
Uh oh…You’ve caught Heather fever, otherwise known as, Dumb Wife’s Syndrome or DWS…That’s where you go to amazing places, and then can’t remember certain things. All the while, others are telling you all about this, that and the other, and you’re trying to figure out whether they went on a trip without you, or if you blacked out during it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
I'm sure of two things.

I was groggy, so that might be why I don't remember...
If we did go in, I didn't take any pictures.
Nah…It was DWS!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Behind the church we found our first major tourist area. A side street filled with sketch artists, begging to sketch you, or your spouse, or your kid, or anything!!! just please let me sketch something!!!
I can only imagine what they would sell them for afterwards. Plus, I’m not a good subject. I’m the one that ends up turning my head to look at something all the way to the left, then I start talking, and I’m an animated talker, so, by the time the sketch was done, it would look like a big blur with eyes and red hair!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
plus a bunch of little shops selling cheap Paris souvenirs. So of course we went in.
Since my last shopping smiley scared you, I'll sue this one, it's a little less intimidating.


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
A little farther on, something bad happened.
Something that sent shivers up Ruby's back (Nope. Not another frisky pickpocket).
I was about to say…I don’t think the frisky pickpocket is among her fears at the moment. All he's doing is hitting on her. She’s sexy and she knows it.


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
She had to face one of her worst fears.
"No!" She begged. "Anything but that! Oh, the horror!"



Yes, it was that particularly Parisian penchant for.....



mimes.
You know. I’m sitting here thinking all sorts of crazy things. A dementor, a snake, a lady wearing the exact same outfit she was…

Wasn’t expecting mimes. Although I understand, they are a little weird. My fear is Clowns, ever since watching Stephen King’s IT when I was little.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Oh, the humanity!
Poor Ruby stood stoically by while I snapped a pic of the still creature. I didn't want to prolong Ruby's anguish, so we moved on.
That would be like T-Man taking a picture of a spider (I am extremely Arachnophobic) before killing it or trying to gingerly take it out of the house while I’m screaming at the top of my lungs or huddling in the corner as far away from it as humanly possible.

In other words, that’s just cruel!



Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
We passed by this shop and had to stop for a little sumthin' sumthin'.
Already breaking into the mini bar?

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Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Wouldn't you?



Oh…um…yeah…what…what were we talking about again?

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
To the far left, in the display case, can you see those little green, pink and brown circles? Those are called "macarons". They are NOT coconut macaroons! These are bite sized bits of meringue heaven. Kay and I each had one, and made it our duty to try other places to find the best ones. Luckily, you could find them in almost every pastry shop.
Those look very yummy…

I’m with T-Man on this one though, The first thing that caught my eye were the cookies that looked like pig snouts.


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
A little farther on we came to Place du Tertre, a square considered the heart of this neighborhood. Artists congregate here to sell their wares or paint or sketch passersby. It was fun just wandering around, looking at the various paintings or portraits being done.
Unlike the other area you were just in, where artists congregated trying to sell, paint or sketch ANYONE willing to stand still long enough. Or was it the same area? Do do do do, do do do do…

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
After we'd had our fill of the square,
If you were that hungry…especially after all those pastries, I’m sure you could have just found a café or something. Eating the square really isn’t good for the digestive system. (Yeah I know. Totally lame and you saw it coming…but it’s all I got!)

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
our next stop was the famous Moulin Rouge. It was a bit of a hike, and as we strolled along cobblestone streets, Kay started to complain that her feet were starting to hurt. It was only now that I noticed that she wasn't wearing the brand new shoes we'd gotten her specifically for this very purpose.
Would it have been better if she wore “brand new shoes” and had to break them in by hiking all over cobblestone streets? Six in one, half dozen in the other?

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
We gingerly made our way down the street and arrived at our destination.


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Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Again, something I would have never thought to look for. That is awesome!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
After resting for a bit, I was hoping Kay's feet would feel better, but no luck. Unfortunately, we had to now walk back to our room. We took it slow, but Kay's poor feet took a few days to recover.
I understand the pain. But, it’s what we do to enjoy vacation darn it. Suck it up and get back on that cobblestone walk!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
The walk back was.... educational for the girls. We strolled along famous Pigalle street, or as it's also known, "Pig Alley". The street is lined with cheap knockoff and bargain stores... and lots and lots of strip clubs. It's also the location of Paris' Erotic Museum. I thought about going in (what's more educational then a museum, am I right? Or am I right?) but took pity on poor Kay's feet and passed it by.
Hmm…pig alley, and lots of strip clubs and an erotic museum along the way…very interesting to say the least.

And yes. Museums are very educational…I don’t know if I would include an erotic museum as an educational piece for my teenage daughters, but for the spouse and I…I mean…I…Museums are education…yup…


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
About half way back to our room, we stopped at a little resaurant for dinner. I had my very first French Onion Soup that was made (and eaten) in France.

I’m not a big fan of onions, unless the yare battered and deep fried!
And while I have always wanted to try making it, only because I am constantly watching the food channel and see it made quite often, I wouldn’t eat it so there would be no point.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
But honestly? It was only so, so. I make a couple of different versions that are both better. Ruby had one later on that she said was really good, but I had no such luck.
Don’t you hate that? You go to a place, expecting a dish to be superb and it ends up being, just ok, nothing to write home about.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
I also had a Croque Monsieur. Basically a ham and cheese on a crusty bun. That at least was quite good.
Suprisingly, I actually knew what a Croque Monsieur was. There is a small café not too far from my office that serves those, along with my favorite, an opened face Croque Madame. Great for breakfast!

Prac…now I’m hungry!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
And what new Parisian foods did the girls eat?

Kay: Cheeseburger and fries
Elle: Cheeseburger and fries
Ruby: Cheeseburger and fries

When in Rome…or this case, Paris…do what American’s do and order something you know!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Kay grabs her burger, splurts some ketchup on it and digs in.
Splurts? Is this the same as splats? Or squirts?

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Elle grabs her burger, splorts some mustard on it and digs........


Right there is when Elle realises that she's not in Canada any more.
There's no place like home



Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
After Ruby and Elle shopped in a nearby store for a bit, we manage to stagger (Kay more so then others) back to our apartment.
You let her dip into the mini bar too I see…?

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
(Enter 7 digit code. Use square key. Enter 4 digit code. Use round key. Climb two flights of spiral stairs. Use room key. Trudge up last flight of spiral stairs...)
Put your left hand in…



Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
Kay is overjoyed that the room has wi-fi so she starts catching up on "the real world". After a few seconds, I look over and.....


Kay's lying in bed... fully dressed... headphones in ears.... iPod playing some YouTube video... and passed out cold.


Poor thing.
Aww. Poor thing. You wore her out!


Thanks for the chapter. Can’t wait to read more about your adventures!
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Thumping Our Way Through Disneyland

We Hopped All The Way To Disneyland Just For Some Dis Meets
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Old 09-18-2013, 05:48 PM   #245
pkondz
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Join Date: Mar 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lisaviolet View Post
**Just wanted to add that since many Americans, and others, get it in their head that our weather is so unlike many of their northern states. And yes I know Winnipeg and Toronto are very different too.
That's true. Toronto's weather can be quite cold, while Winnipeg is widely known as "The tropics of the prairies".


:


Quote:
Originally Posted by mmeb144 View Post
Well I was going to post it since you asked... but I have to respond to Heather first....

Soon, though. Just putting the finishing touches on it.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
I apologize for my tardiness...
Yeah! What's with that?!?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
However, having to deal with 8th graders this week, plus the craziness of real life.
hmmmmm..... nope. Not good enough.
Come up with a better excuse.

Be creative.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
..I am hoping to get this in under the wire before I have to start the breakdown of the next chapter.
Ya just made it.

But seriously Heather, I know life gets busy.
I don't want you reading this and dreading the next chapter!
I'd be more then happy if you just posted, "I read that." or whatever.

I'm loving the breakdowns... but don't do 'em if you're too busy.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
<sigh> At work, blah, blah, blah... I'll get to it tomorrow, promise.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
It happens to the best Ponzi.
It was the best of Ponzi, it was the worst of Ponzi...


mostly the worst.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Only? Sounds sort of like my college days…I’m sure a few more hours won’t kill ya. Look at me…Er…nevermind.
Looks to me like college was very kind to you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
I called ahead of time and told them to put everything on hold until you got there. As of this moment, people were still in the streets or in their offices or in their houses at a complete standstill waiting for the Ponzi family…
Ever seen The Truman Show?

It was just like that.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
You must have been delirious, if you counted all 6,427 of them, However, you forgot to count the ghosts that followed the passengers…so you’ll have to go back and re-count, sorry.
I didn't forget... they just didn't make their presence known.



I hate ghostly presents. No substance to those gifts.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Whoops? Whoops? There’s no Whoops on vacation!!!!
hmmmm..... How do you feel about Woots?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
oooh. I love guessing games. Um…Can you give me a clue? Can I phone a friend?
No. But you can ask the audience.

Go ahead...

<cricket> <cricket> <cricket>


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Seeing as I have never been through customs, I’ll take your word for it. The most I get around here is when we go to Las Cruces, NM and coming back , we have to go through a border patrol checkpoint, most of the time we get waved on through, every now and then, we get stopped and asked, “Are you American?” or “Where are you from?” As long as you don’t answer back with, “Si.” Or “Que dices?” You’ll be sent on through.
So, "yo no hablo Inglés" is okay, then?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by pkondz View Post
You might think that LFPG... what? Everyone knows what MCO is, but you don't know LFPG?
Longest Flight Possible Gentlemen?!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
<Le Sigh> Probably won’t get to visit that in this lifetime.
Me neither... but I don't really want to, so...


Whoops! There goes the rest of my readers!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
You mean to tell me there was no one around stating, “half eaten suitcases and partially masticated bags from flight 1154 over here!” “Half eaten suitcases and moderately masticated bags from flight 1411 over here!” Half pulverized, and completely shredded bags from flight 1089 over here!”
Well, actually there was. But we were in Paris, so of course they were speaking Turkish.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
You know, I could say, again, that this happens to everyone…but…I’m done lying for you Ponzi…It’s really just you this time.
That's what I said!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Love trains, but my fear is I will miss my stop somewhere along the line. I am thankful that while taking the train to work everyday like I do, the ride is short enough where I don’t have the chance to nap or really get into a book or movie before having to get off. Otherwise I would end up in Belen, NM instead of Albuquerque…
I hear ya. I'm constantly checking the number of stops and the names of the stops to the point of being obnoxious.

Or more so then usual...

"Okay everybody. This is ______. We get off in 3 more stops at ______. So not this stop or the the next two stops, but the one after those. So this one, then two more, then we get off. In three stops."

Repeat for each stop and several times in between stops for good measure.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Got lucky there buddy!
No, it was Ruby that got lucky.

Oh! You mean about the trains!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
And you just let this Parisian “pinch her bum”?
I didn't know until much later... She didn't mention it until well after it happened and I didn't see it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
I love baguette…Although most of the time I end up cutting it and toasting it in the over to make crustini for dips and for salad croutons.
Or bruschetta... yummm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Uh oh…What did she do that was so mischievous?
Nothing... but she likes to keep me guessing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Reminded me of the trip we recently took for that memorial service, we stayed at one of the very few hotels they had in the area, and there are no elevators. Of course, we end up with a room on the second floor. Since we are staying only one night, we pack light. One bag for the clothes, my miscellaneous bag (for random things we forgot to throw in the clothes bag, and don’t want to bother repacking or taking out of the car to add), our cooler bag that we use to carry our coffee pot (includes coffee, coffee mugs, sugar. As well as the cutting board and knife, salt shaker and lime squeezer), and then the actual cooler, full of beer, sodas, water, cream for the coffee and ice…lots of ice. Luckily all these things, except for my misc. bag have wheels, so we can wheel them from the car to the bottom of the stairs. I take my misc. bag, and our clothes bag and lug them up to the top of the stairs. T-Man stops at the bottom, leaves the cooler holding the coffee pot, and lifts the other cooler and starts up the stairs. At this time, another family is coming in and headed up the stairs as well, directly behind T-Man. T-Man stops at the top of the stairs where I am holding the door open, He moves to the side, only because the mom of the family behind him is literally on his heels, and the family proceeds to walk right through the door I am holding. I am usually not one to hold my tongue anyway, so as the mother walks through, without saying a darn thing, I say “You’re welcome!” (Make sure when reading that you say it with the most sarcastic tone possible!) and of course, as the father and kids walk through, they all say Thank You. At that very moment, the mother turns around and looks at me and says “Was that directed to me?” I actually bit my tongue this time and didn’t even look her way, said you’re welcome to one of the kids who went through, and then continued to hold the door while T-Man went back down to get the other bag left at the bottom of the stairs. I was happy we didn’t see her the rest of the time we were there.
Were you embarrassed, or outraged?

Don't you wish you could be ready with a quick quip when you really need one?
"Yes it was directed at you. You neglected to tip the door man."
"No, because being courteous is something you just can't teach some people."
"Heavens no! I'm just so thrilled I was able to hold the door for someone as important as you!!!!"
"Yeah it was. But don't worry about it. Just go back down and bring up our luggage like a good little peon, would you?"


And then the fight breaks out...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Oh thank goodness. That was very sweet of him by the way. I’m sure that wasn’t easy.
I did notice that he was sweating and breathing a little hard. I kinda felt guilty about it, but the deed was already done.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
That is a really nice place from the pictures. I’m glad you had such a great experience with the hotel first time out!
It really was. I've already written a glowing report on Tripadvisor.
(138 reviews, 1 average, 6 very good and 131 excellent !)


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
It’s like that on any vacation, once you get there, you get sort of a second wind, wanting to see what you can, while you can, even if your exhausted!
Yes.... and no.

Yes, you do get your second wind, for sure.
But at the same time, you just can't go to bed at 1pm.... You'll never adjust. So you just have to stay up.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Um…Okay, if you say so…
…lla ti ekahs dna, ni dnah tfel ruoy tup, tuo dnah tfel ruoy ekat, ni dnah tfel ruoy tuP


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Again, beautiful girls…make sure you keep that shotgun nearby!
Steven Seagal once hosted SNL. He was one of the absolute worst hosts ever. But there was one skit where he plays the father of a young girl about to go on a date. The poor young suitor has to wait while the 'Father' sharpens his huge knife and tells of how many men he's killed while in the Marines (or something like that).


I want that to be me.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Duly noted, although I have to say, that I probably would have done the same thing. I’m a glutton for punishment like that.
So you're not one of those people on glutton free diets, huh?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Look at that…Educational and entertaining at the same time! I didn’t need 4 years of HS and 4 ½ years of College!
Everything you'll ever need to know in life can be found in this TR.


Trust me.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
I hadn’t even thought about the Eiffel Tower…I’m still captivated by that view. Wow!!!
Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Uh oh…You’ve caught Heather fever, otherwise known as, Dumb Wife’s Syndrome or DWS…That’s where you go to amazing places, and then can’t remember certain things. All the while, others are telling you all about this, that and the other, and you’re trying to figure out whether they went on a trip without you, or if you blacked out during it.
I really, still don't remember. Something tells me that there was a sign saying no photographs, which would explain the lack thereof.... but....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
I can only imagine what they would sell them for afterwards. Plus, I’m not a good subject. I’m the one that ends up turning my head to look at something all the way to the left, then I start talking, and I’m an animated talker, so, by the time the sketch was done, it would look like a big blur with eyes and red hair!
How many eyes?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Since my last shopping smiley scared you, I'll sue this one, it's a little less intimidating.
But now I'm intimidated that you'd sue a smiley!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Wasn’t expecting mimes. Although I understand, they are a little weird. My fear is Clowns, ever since watching Stephen King’s IT when I was little.
So imagine a clown who won't... I mean absolutely will not... speak...


ooooohhhhh....


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
That would be like T-Man taking a picture of a spider (I am extremely Arachnophobic) before killing it or trying to gingerly take it out of the house while I’m screaming at the top of my lungs or huddling in the corner as far away from it as humanly possible.
I have a friend who's exactly the same.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
In other words, that’s just cruel!
Well.... I like to amuse myself at other's expense every now and then


well... often.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
I’m with T-Man on this one though, The first thing that caught my eye were the cookies that looked like pig snouts.
Funny how I didn't even notice them when I was there... but as soon as I see that picture, they just jump out at you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Unlike the other area you were just in, where artists congregated trying to sell, paint or sketch ANYONE willing to stand still long enough. Or was it the same area? Do do do do, do do do do…
Looks like I got some 'splainin' to do.

The artists near Sacre Coeur were mobile. They were in one area, but would walk around with sketch pad in hand and ask if you wanted a portrait. In Place du Tertre, all the artists had a spot and would paint or sketch on canvas on easels. Plus there were many artists with finished works of art that they were selling. You would go up to them instead of them up to you.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
If you were that hungry…especially after all those pastries, I’m sure you could have just found a café or something. Eating the square really isn’t good for the digestive system. (Yeah I know. Totally lame and you saw it coming…but it’s all I got!)
Depends on the square.

Brownie square? I'm all over that.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Would it have been better if she wore “brand new shoes” and had to break them in by hiking all over cobblestone streets? Six in one, half dozen in the other?
Don't think the thought didn't cross my mind! We had band-aids and bodyglide ready for the new shoes, but there was nothing we could do with sore feet from no-support-flip flops.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Again, something I would have never thought to look for. That is awesome!
It was a must see.... but I'm pretty sure the rug-rats had no idea of its significance.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
I understand the pain. But, it’s what we do to enjoy vacation darn it. Suck it up and get back on that cobblestone walk!
Yeah!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Hmm…pig alley, and lots of strip clubs and an erotic museum along the way…very interesting to say the least.
Yup... but that's just part of Paris culture. Sorta like Amsterdam's famous red light district. You gotta see it, you just don't necessarily have to partake in it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
And yes. Museums are very educational…I don’t know if I would include an erotic museum as an educational piece for my teenage daughters, but for the spouse and I…I mean…I…Museums are education…yup…
Duly noted. Heather desperately wants to see the erotic museum.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
I’m not a big fan of onions, unless the yare battered and deep fried!
And while I have always wanted to try making it, only because I am constantly watching the food channel and see it made quite often, I wouldn’t eat it so there would be no point.
Do what I do for Elle, who's also not an onion fan. Make the soup and strain it before putting the bread and cheese on.

It's the bread, cheese and broth that make it anyway.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Don’t you hate that? You go to a place, expecting a dish to be superb and it ends up being, just ok, nothing to write home about.
Except, of course, I did write home about it!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
When in Rome…or this case, Paris…do what American’s do and order something you know!
Exactly!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Splurts? Is this the same as splats? Or squirts?
Very similar. Slightly different sound effect.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man's Wife View Post
Thanks for the chapter. Can’t wait to read more about your adventures!
Coming up in just a bit! Thanks again for the breakdown, but I'm serious... Don't do 'em if you're too busy!
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Just a silly little TR - run away!


1977 - offsite 1987 - offsite 1992 - offsite 2005 - POR (never going offsite again!!!) 2009 - ASMu
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Old 09-18-2013, 06:53 PM   #246
pkondz
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Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Winnipeg
Posts: 6,278

I scream, you scream...

After pulling Kay's earbuds out of her ears so she wouldn't roll over and strangle herself in her sleep, and gently prying her iPod out of her hand and placing everything on a nearby shelf, the rest of us hopped into our beds for a nice looooong sleep.

(Nope. Kay didn't wake up during these ministrations)

I figure we probably hit the sack around 9pm or so...


And I was up about 12:30 - 1:00am!

I remember thinking, "Well.... I'm up. I guess it's because it's six o'clock in the evening back home."
I'm pretty sure I heard one of the evil brats rustling around, so I wasn't the only one having a weird sleep.

I thought to myself, "This is ridiculous! I was up for something like 36 hours, I'm pretty sure I should sleep more!"


And I did. <phew!>


I've actually been to Paris once before.
I think I was 9 or 10 at the time.
I remember seeing the Eiffel tower. I remember seeing... and being bored with... Napoleon's tomb. I vaguely remember L'arche de Triomphe... mostly because my dad stood in the street to take a home movie of it... and almost got run over by impatient Paris drivers.
There's a few other memories floating around in there, but suffice to say I was pretty young and some things made an impact and others... less so.

I've always been an avid reader. I remember when I was in grade seven, my parents let me get a bunch of books from the book fair (I easily had the largest order in the class ), one of which was Gaston Leroux's The Phantom of the Opera.

What was not to love about Phantom of the Opera for a young boy? Hidden doors, trick mirrors, an underground lake with a mysterious, hidden figure...

And I never really thought much more about it, outside of the realm of fiction.


Until now.


I suppose I've always wanted to see the Paris Opera house, but I'd always assumed that the building described in the book was as fictional as it's titular character.

Imagine my surprise, when I discovered that in fact the Opera house did indeed exist (complete with underground lake, although unfortunately, you can't go see it).


Can anyone say, "Bucket list"?


I knew you could.



That, ladies and gentlemen is called 'setting the stage'... and I've done it poorly.
But I wanted you to have some background before the rest of the story unfolds.


So back off!



Today was the start of our first full day in Paris. Yes, the tower that Gustave built was very high on the list of priorities... Oh, who am I kidding.

It was numero uno. (whoops! that's Italian... that's not 'til later)

C'était, numéro un..... (better?)

But I also knew that if we went to the Eifflel Tower first, we'd have to do a lot of backtracking, so there were a few little things to see first.



I had purchased four two-day passes on a hop on/hop off bus tour,



and there was a stop, just down the street from our.... I'm just gonna call it our hotel from now on.

The bus company that ran it had four different routes. To get to our first stop using only the bus would require doing most of one tour then hopping on another bus to go on a different route.

We were getting a late start so we didn't want to 'waste' too much time, so we* decided to take the metro to the changeover spot.

(* when I say 'we' here, I mean I tell Ruby what I think we should do, then she has the final say on whether or not we should do it. whatever. it works for us, most of the time. when it doesn't, then it's my fault. that's a married couple truism.)

We march back to the metro station, and a few minutes later we are at our stop. We climb back to the surface and are greeted with this fine view of Paris streets.



After snapping that shot, I turn around....


The Paris Opera!!!!

We had other fish to fry this morning (and places to visit, too) so we wouldn't be going there today.


But, oh... so close!

We make our way to the bus stop and after only four or five minutes a bus shows up and we hop on. We're lucky to snag seats on the top.

The first time you board the tour bus, you show the driver your pass (or you pay if you don't have one) and are given earbuds to listen to the recorded audio tour (you can choose between eight different languages).

The audio tour, with it's overly forced gaiety was informative nevertheless. If you ignored the delivery and focussed on the message, it wasn't bad.


Our first stop... let me clarify that... The bus first stopped here, but we weren't getting off.

The famous Louvre.



Yes. We skipped the Louvre.
Some of you are gasping in disbelief, others are going, "meh".

When we were planning (see we* above) our Paris visit, I asked Ruby if she wanted to see the Louvre. Neither one of us are big art lovers... well, I'll stop for a good photo exhibition, but that's about it... And we decided to spend our short time in Paris elsewhere.

The Louvre is BIG people! We had two days and a bit to fit in all our Paris sightseeing. You'd need at least a week to scratch the surface of the Louvre... unless you just want to run in, see the Mona Lisa and/or the Venus de Milo... then you'll need about a day.

Seriously, the Louvre is one of the largest museums in the world. It's got about thirty five thousand pieces contained within a massive six hundred and fifty odd thousand square feet of real estate.

If you spent only ten seconds on each piece, it would take you four days to see everything.


That's a lotta art.


BTW, did everyone catch our first 'Disney' connection?
No?

Does that, or does that not look like a hidden Mickey?

Where? Here's a hint. If you've read Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code, or seen the movie, you'll have automatically looked there.


So we bypass the Louvre, and catch our first glimpse of....



The famous Seine river. Oh, and notice that tall, thin structure? See it? Does everyone see it?!?!? Thicker at the base? Narrowing towards the top?????


That's a lamp post.



Oh, yeah... and you can see the Eiffel Tower over there too.



what?



Eventually we reach our first hop off spot and (for real this time) our first Disney connection, too. While we never did spot Quasimodo, we had arrived at



Notre Dame.

Sorry for the poor quality of the shot, but we didn't go back later and I thought it would be rude to tell the sun to move. I was the visitor, after all.

The cornerstone for Notre Dame was laid in 1163 but the Cathedral wasn't completed until 1345, almost two hundred years later. See the row of statues that spans the facade above the three doors? They are restored statues of the Kings of Judah. In 1793, during the French Revolution, they were mistakenly thought to be past Kings of France and were taken down and beheaded. Almost 200 years later, in 1977 the heads were found during a nearby excavation and are now on display in a museum.


Right about now, some of you are thinking, "Huh. Never knew that. Interesting."

While the rest of you are thinking, "Darn it! If I wanted an education, I'd a stayed in school! Now stop with the teachin' and start being funny, gall darnit!"

Moving on....


Outside the Cathedral, I found a nice spot to just sit and admire the view. At which point Kay asked, "Why are we just sitting here?"
Funny, that's pretty much exactly how I felt when I was about her age on my first visit to Europe.

The line to go inside was about 100 yards long.
No. I'm not exagerating.

But it moved fairly quickly and we were inside in short order. It was probably only about 5 or 10 minutes.

Inside, a service was going on, which I thought was pretty great. I mean, that's what the Cathedral is for, isn't it?
That and housing people with bad backs... hmmm.... so I guess Nebo and I qualify as prospective bell ringers, no?
So while we were inside, we got to hear the priest, preach (in french of course, and quick, so I didn't understand most of it) and hear the organ play.


Awesome.



Some of the stained glass... this one is in the north transept.



Wherever you see stained glass in Notre Dame that does not depict a biblical scene but is instead geometrical, it was probably restored after being hit with stray bullets during WWII.

These are behind the choir.




When we were done visiting, we left by the northmost of the three front doors. (The one on the left as you face the Cathedral) I had read what to look for and snapped this pic as we exited.




You'll notice that the second figure from the right is holding his head in his hands. This is St. Denis, a patron saint of Paris. Legend has it that around 250 AD, Denis was decapitated. Afterwards, he picked up his head and walked for 10 kilometers (about 6 miles), preaching all the while, before he finally died.


"Gall darnit! What'd I say about this here 'edication' guff?"


sorry


We hadn't eaten yet and by now we were getting pretty hungry. There were a few cafés across the street from the Cathedral, but of course they would be ridiculously expensive to take advantage of the gullible tourists.

So that's where we ate.


I'm pretty sure Ruby and I each had omelettes. Another traditionally french dish!

Elle and Kay both also tried something different from hamburgers.
They both had "Le hotdog".

again I just

Although I think they were both put out a little bit since the weiners were nestled in crusty french baguettes.


Right smack dab in the middle of Paris, in the middle of the Seine, are two islands. Notre Dame is located on 'Ile de la Cité' and right beside it is the slighly smaller 'Ile Saint-Louis'. The two are joined by a pedestrian bridge.

From some research I had done, I knew that one of the best ice-cream shops in Paris, Berthillon, was located 'next door' on Ile Saint-Louis. I had been drooling about going there for months.


I was so sick and tired of the constant mopping up I had to do as a result.


From where we were sitting, it was about half a mile away. If you remember, Kay's feet had taken a beating the day before and they were still sore. Half a mile might as well be on the moon if she couldn't walk it. But with the promise of some of the world's best ice-cream in her head, she decided to give it a try.

We set off in search of this legendary ice-cream parlour. Walking slowly, we made our way to the bridge, crossed the bridge, found the correct street, patiently made our way down it until finally... finally! After months of waiting and buckets of drool (ugh. I think I just made myself a little bit sick, there), we arrived at the world famous Berthillon shop. Here's a snippet from Wiki, hopefully it will make you forget what I just said and maybe even make you feel better:


Berthillon sells its ice cream in bulk and by the scoop from its shop on the island, and distributes to retailers within the Paris region. Berthillon uses only natural ingredients, with no chemical preservatives, artificial sweeteners or stabilizers. Its ice creams are made from milk, sugar, cream and eggs and flavoring, which derives from natural sources like cocoa, vanilla bean, fruit, etc. Up to fifteen flavors may be produced every day by the chefs depending on the season, market availability and demand. In total, about sixty different flavors are produced by the Maison Berthillon throughout the year.


Sounds pretty amazing doesn't it?

Anyway, it was closed for the month of August, so we didn't have any.


...




With heads held low and throbbing feet, we sadly made our way back up the street. Oh sure, there were a couple of competitors on the street, and we stopped at this one...



And, yes. It was very, very good... but it just wasn't the same, you know?

In hindsight, I should have known. I mean, if an ice-cream shop is going to close, you'd figure it would be when it's really hot out and there's an overflowing amount of paying customers around, right?


As I was saying... With heads held low (because, that's how you eat ice-cream, or in this case, gelato) we slowly made our way back up to Ile de la Cité.

Adjacent to Notre Dame is Paris' narrowest road bridge, Pont de l'Archevêché. Big name, narrow bridge.



Notice anything odd? Here's a closer look at the railing.




Nobody really knows how it started, but the story goes that if you put your and your lover's initials on a lock then throw away the key, in this case, into the Seine, the love will be unbreakable. There are three... thats three bridges in Paris that all look like this!

That's a whole lotta lovin' right there.


Elle and I crossed the bridge to get another view of Notre Dame while Ruby and Kay relaxed on a park bench. I managed to get this shot just as one of the famous 'Bateaux Mouches' went by.




When we rejoined Ruby and Kay, the people with TB had to go to the washroom.

Public washrooms in Europe are all indicated by a WC sign. It originates with the English 'Water Closet'.
However if you ask anyone where the WC is ("Ou est le WC?" (French) or "Wo ist das WC?" (German)), you get confused or blank looks in return.

You have to ask, "Where is the toilet?"


Anyway.... there was a WC in the park, adjacent to Notre Dame where we re-met, and so we headed over.

Of course, there was no lineup for the men's room, but there was one for the women's.
There was also an attendant, to keep things neat and tidy.

She was not having a good day.

Just before Elle went in, someone came out and left some paper towels on the floor. The attendant remarked, in an exasperated tone, "Really! There's a garbage right beside the toilet!"

Some people,


hmmmm.... we've now descended to the level of toilet humour.
Perhaps now would be a good time to end this chapter.

Up next: More of our first full day in Paris!
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Old 09-18-2013, 09:40 PM   #247
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Hit on a couple of things real quick.

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Berthillon sells its ice cream in bulk and by the scoop from its shop on the island, and distributes to retailers within the Paris region. Berthillon uses only natural ingredients, with no chemical preservatives, artificial sweeteners or stabilizers. Its ice creams are made from milk, sugar, cream and eggs and flavoring, which derives from natural sources like cocoa, vanilla bean, fruit, etc. Up to fifteen flavors may be produced every day by the chefs depending on the season, market availability and demand. In total, about sixty different flavors are produced by the Maison Berthillon throughout the year.


Sounds pretty amazing doesn't it?
Nah. Not really. Lady H makes homemade ice cream and she only uses natural ingredients also. I don't have to travel thousands of mile for frozen bliss.


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With heads held low and throbbing feet, we sadly made our way back up the street. Oh sure, there were a couple of competitors on the street, and we stopped at this one...



And, yes. It was very, very good... but it just wasn't the same, you know?
Personally I don't know. And I want to know, how you know, since you don't really know, since the place was closed you know.

Since you didn't have ice cream from the place you originally wanted to have ice cream from, you have no basis for comparison. It could be that you had the better ice cream all along, but the Ponz will never know.


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Notice anything odd? Here's a closer look at the railing.




Nobody really knows how it started, but the story goes that if you put your and your lover's initials on a lock then throw away the key, in this case, into the Seine, the love will be unbreakable. There are three... thats three bridges in Paris that all look like this![/B]
Did you and Ruby leave a lock? Or does she have you locked up with shackles and threw the key away a long time ago?

Now that's love right there. She wants to make sure you never leave.
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Old 09-18-2013, 10:00 PM   #248
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Lady H makes homemade ice cream and she only uses natural ingredients also. I don't have to travel thousands of mile for frozen bliss.
I've made ice cream a few times myself, but I can never seem to get that nice smooth silky texture that the best ice creams have.

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Personally I don't know. And I want to know, how you know, since you don't really know, since the place was closed you know.
Ah! But I do! Since the place we went to only had gelato, no matter what ice cream Berthillon served, it would be different.

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Since you didn't have ice cream from the place you originally wanted to have ice cream from, you have no basis for comparison. It could be that you had the better ice cream all along, but the Ponz will never know.
Never say never. I just might have to go back to Paris just for the ice cream.


It could happen.


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Did you and Ruby leave a lock? Or does she have you locked up with shackles and threw the key away a long time ago?

Now that's love right there. She wants to make sure you never leave.
Nope. We didn't leave a lock. We didn't think to bring one and buying a super over-priced one from one of the swindlers... I mean, one of the fine gentlemen selling them on the street did not appeal to us.

Besides we don't need no superstitious lock thing to know that if something better comes around we'd dump the other one like a red hot potato.

Or something like that.
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Old 09-19-2013, 09:13 AM   #249
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That's true. Toronto's weather can be quite cold, while Winnipeg is widely known as "The tropics of the prairies".


:
My cousins (grew up in Winnipeg, now living in Calgary) refer to it as Winterpeg.
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Old 09-19-2013, 09:17 AM   #250
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All the pictures are just beautiful. I especially love the ones from Notre Dame. I'm sure the stained glass would be just breathtaking in person.

Thanks for the update
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Old 09-19-2013, 09:28 AM   #251
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My cousins (grew up in Winnipeg, now living in Calgary) refer to it as Winterpeg.
Well I still live here and we call it Winterpeg, Manisnowba.

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All the pictures are just beautiful. I especially love the ones from Notre Dame. I'm sure the stained glass would be just breathtaking in person.

Thanks for the update
Thanks Dawn. And yes, it was!
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Old 09-19-2013, 10:12 AM   #252
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The famous Louvre.



BTW, did everyone catch our first 'Disney' connection?
No?

Does that, or does that not look like a hidden Mickey?

Where? Here's a hint. If you've read Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code, or seen the movie, you'll have automatically looked there.
Da Vinci Code. One of my favorite books and movies. I looked and I don't think it really looks like a Hidden Mickey. The ears aren't quite as defined. I guess it could be if you really want it to be.

Now if you look at your Notre Dame picture,

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You can very easily spot the not so hidden Mickey's here.
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Old 09-19-2013, 11:08 AM   #253
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Well I still live here and we call it Winterpeg, Manisnowba.
I've only been there once, but not in winter. Winter in Montreal & upstate NY were enough for me. =)

Gorgeous photos of Paris by the way - thank you for sharing them with us!
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Old 09-19-2013, 11:46 AM   #254
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All caught up! Have been DIS-less for a couple weeks, glad to be back.

Great pix, Ponzi!! I'm with you on the Opera House, big Phantom fan. We watched a 1943 version of PotO with Claude Rains, just this week. I think it was done on some of the same sets as the 1925 silent version with Lon Chaney.

Maybe that HM at the Louvre is a view from the top of Mickey's head? But if I only had limited time, I'd skip it too...Paris overload, too much to see and do!!!

I'll try to stay with the class now.
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Old 09-19-2013, 02:04 PM   #255
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper_Man View Post
Da Vinci Code. One of my favorite books and movies. I looked and I don't think it really looks like a Hidden Mickey. The ears aren't quite as defined. I guess it could be if you really want it to be.

Now if you look at your Notre Dame picture,

You can very easily spot the not so hidden Mickey's here.
I've seen some of the things that people pass off as Hidden Mickeys and that was a lot closer then some!

I did notice them on the building, and there's tons more inside... but I decided to draw the line.

It might not've been a straight line, but it's a line nevertheless.


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I've only been there once, but not in winter. Winter in Montreal & upstate NY were enough for me. =)
Try Churchill on the shores of Hudson Bay in mid-winter. I remember Ruby & I walking to a friend's house when it was -40. With windchill -67.

(At that point, does it really matter if it's Celsius or Fahrenheit? It's just cold people!!! Oh, all right... -40F and -89F)


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Gorgeous photos of Paris by the way - thank you for sharing them with us!
Thanks! Glad you liked 'em! More coming up in the next chapter or two.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cjlvsccm View Post
All caught up! Have been DIS-less for a couple weeks, glad to be back.

Great pix, Ponzi!! I'm with you on the Opera House, big Phantom fan. We watched a 1943 version of PotO with Claude Rains, just this week. I think it was done on some of the same sets as the 1925 silent version with Lon Chaney.
I own a copy (on VHS, though... so I can't watch it anymore) of the Lon Chaney one. Haven't seen the Claude Rains version since I was a kid.

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Maybe that HM at the Louvre is a view from the top of Mickey's head? But if I only had limited time, I'd skip it too...Paris overload, too much to see and do!!!
Yup. Paris is like Disney in that regard. There's no way you can do everything, so don't even try.

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I'll try to stay with the class now.
That's good, 'cause any more absences and you'd have to sit in the corner.
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