Paris – 1

We took a train from Lyon to Paris – it was the fast train TGV. Apparently it has been clocked at speeds of 581 km/hr. I am pretty sure it did not reach those speeds but it did cover more than 450 km in less than 2 hours which was pretty impressive. I should say that this was the first train ride I was actually excited about.

Paris was the city we were staying the longest. We decided to do things slowly and take as much of the city in as possible. I got two 5 day passes for the trains. Lonely planet suggested that we get the pass for a week even if we are staying for just 3 days. That was my initial plan but luckily I got a 5 day one which could start on any day of the week. I decided to activate it for the following day which would give us 5 whole days. If you are in Paris, this is well worth the investment. We probably used the value of the card in less than 2 days.

We then made it to our hotel – called Au Lenox Montparnasse. The hotel is pretty good and right in the middle of tow. We settled in and then went off to the Eiffel tower. It was pretty awesome. We went all the way to the top and in true touristy fashion, took a lot of snaps. I badly wanted to climb the tower using the steps but my wife wisely vetoed the idea.

We then went off to a Turkish hotel called La Voie Lactee. The food was pretty good – they had decent veggie options. Both of usiked our dishes. The appetizers were awesome.

On our way back, at the train station I did not know how to work the ticket machine. There was no one at the ticket counter. There was a red button near the machine which said press and talk into. These were the only words in English – so I promptly did that. The alarms started going off everywhere – boneheaded me did not realize I was hitting the emergency button. A lady came out and asked us in french what the emergency was. I had not yet come to my senses and asked her for tickets in English. Eventually things got settled and we managed to escape without any penalty. She also gave us our tickets but told us not to try this stunt again – though with a smile. I was feeling pretty dumb but we ended up having a good laugh. I would not advise this strategy for anyone buying tickets 🙂 but it did work.

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