This weekend I took a trip to Paris. When I knew I could travel on the weekends, Paris was the city I wanted to go to the most. I was very interested in going there because I took 4 years of French in high school. I learned about all the landmarks as well as the language. I do not remember much French, but it was cool hearing people talk and being able to pick up on a word or two. My very basic level of French was helpful with looking at menus or flavors of macaroons in the bakeries.
We got to Paris early Friday morning. We were supposed to land earlier than we did but our plane was delayed by an hour and a half. We started off our day in Paris by getting a croissant at a bakery near our hotel. We had a walking tour in the afternoon on the other side of the city. While we were waiting for the tour, we walked over to that area and hung out. The tour started at Hotel de Ville which was about a 2 mile walk from our hotel, so we got to see some things on the way. The tour stayed in the center of the city and talked out the history of Paris. For the major landmarks on the tour, we saw Notre Dame and the Louvre. One of the things we saw on the tour that I thought was interesting was the prison that Marie Antoinette and Louis XVI were in after the French Revolution. The tour guide said that it is not proven that Marie Antoinette ever said, “let them eat cake.” After the tour we walked around the area a little and ate dinner. At the end of our day, we went to see the Arc de Triomphe. We saw the Eiffel Tower on the way because it would be wrong not to.
On Saturday, we started the day off with a croissant again. We got a late start to the day, so we went to get lunch before going to the museum. We had lunch at a French restaurant near the Rodin Museum. We had a charcuterie board and a croque monsieur. We then went to the Rodin Museum and walked around for a while looking at the statues. After the museum, we went over to the Latin Quarter. After walking around the Latin Quarter, we ate dinner near the area of the Louvre and headed back to the hotel.
On Sunday, we went to the Palace of Versailles. We had a tour set up so we could see as much as possible and know what we were looking at. We walked around the main palace, the gardens, the grand palace, the petit palace, and Marie Antoinette’s private estate. I expected to be at Versailles for a while, but I did not expect to spend 6 hours there. After Versailles, we went back to Paris and went to the Orsay Museum. We were there for about an hour because they closed at 6, but I got to see “The Starry Night” by Van Gogh. After that museum, we ate and went back to the hotel. When we got to the hotel, we got our things together and went to the Eiffel Tower to see it at night with the lights on. We got a bottle of wine and snacks to sit on the lawn.
On Monday, we tried to get into the Louvre because we did not buy tickets in time online. We showed up a little after 9 and the line was wrapped around the courtyard. There was no chance we would get in. We then went to Montmartre where the Sacre Coeur is and walked around that area. It is an artsy area, so we saw a lot of people painting and selling their artwork. After that area we went to La Marais to walk around and shop. We ate a crepe and headed back over to the Louvre. We walked the Seine for a while and went back to the hotel to leave.
Overall, Paris was a great time. We walked almost 50 miles over the 4 days. We saw everything that we could. I would say it was a very successful trip.
During my internship this week, I once again continued the project I have been doing. I was making little changes to make the tool look appealing. There were changes to be made right after I just made one and showed my supervisor. This is not a communication issue; I think he just chooses to tell me another step after I just made one. In general, I do not think communicating with people is difficult in Berlin. Everyone speaks English very well. Everyone tries to get to the point while speaking. I think that is helpful because there is no confusion of extra words added in. I have found this to be the same for most places I have visited and in my internship. Sometimes there is a little confusion, but it is easily cleared up by asking a question to clarify.