Joie de vivre
After much encouragement, we decided that a blog may be the best way to share our experiences with those who are interested. We hope that you will check in whenever you have a moment and want to see what we’re up to abroad.
We had much anticipation for the flight since we were bringing our favorite K9, little Sammy. She had a couple of times when she got fed up with her carrier, but in general we couldn’t have asked for smoother sailing. We had no problems in Chicago with the size of her carrier (technically it was slightly larger than the allowed carry on bag size for your pet), partly because our flight was not full. The bag fit under the seat with no problem and every time we heard a whine from below, we would sneak a treat to her. Easily bribed, Sammy made it through the flight with flying colors and is now a world-travelling chien. Marc and I even got a bit of shut eye on the plane since we were so sleep-deprived from the days leading up to our departure. When we arrived in Paris, we braced for customs, knowing that there was a possibility that Sammy’s paperwork would not make the grade. Instead, we received no questions from the customs officers and we’re not even sure that they knew Sammy was there (her bag was black with mesh so it was difficult to see that she was inside). With the main hurdles of travel behind us, we set out for Paris proper.
Our first apartment was not the one that we chose… after signing the agreement with the online agency, we were informed that there was a one week discrepancy and we would be placed at an alternate apartment for the first week. Not ideal, but knowing that this trip would be full of “work-arounds” we decided to make the best of it. And our first week in Paris did not disappoint. Here are a few photos of what Paris looks like in winter:
Speaking of the weather, we have enjoyed a mix of clouds and sun, with a few sprinkles of rain in between. The temperature is around 40 degrees during the day, making it perfect for wandering the city and ducking into cafés and magasins to warm up.
We also took a few pics of our first apartment and its street. The apartment was an “alcove” which we discovered meant that it was the “penthouse” suite, requiring you to climb 4 flights of winding stairs to reach the top. We’ll let the pictures tell the story:
For anyone who has visited Paris in recent years, you most likely saw Notre Dame. In years past, it was brown in color or had scaffolding from work bring done to clean the surface. We were happy to discover on a sunny afternoon that they had finished the cleaning and it is back to its original glory.
We hope that you enjoyed this first look at our time in Paris. As our blog title says, we will share our “tail” (which includes Sammy’s perspective) of Paris and Perpignan. We will post again soon with details of our new apartment and first week of school. So, until then, joie de vivre!