2008 was not our first trip to the magical City of Light. David and I actually spent New Year’s Eve 2005 in Paris.
2005 was our first trip to Europe together. We visited Romania for Christmas, then spent a few days in Paris. I remember being so excited, my face beamed with joy, despite the cold. We waited for midnight on Pont de la Concorde bridge overlooking the Seine and Eiffel Tower, while politely declining vodka offerings from a group of rowdy Russian tourists.
Our second trip to Paris was a lot more laid back. We flew in from Greece with David’s mom and sister and stayed in Montmartre. I can’t recall exactly which hotel it was, but when we got to our rooms, we had to laugh: we had to shimmy by the bed, dodge the door in order to squeeze into a Lilliputian bathroom, where you could easily multitask your morning routine: one could easily access the sink while sitting on the toilet. However, the views from our narrow balcony and from our companion travelers’ pop-up rooftop window were worth it!
We kicked around Montmartre, taking in the expansive city views from the Paris’ highest point. Sacré-Cœur stood tall and stern atop the hill, while a colorful troubadour warmed things up with her tunes, and a human statue mime occasionally startled visitors. We took in the city by night, and made small talk about soccer with a crepe vendor.
I think for me, the artist village by the cathedral was the highlight: Place du Tertre is home to many artists, including book dealers, watercolor painters, portrait sketchers and caricaturists. Just standing and looking around me, I could see perfect photo opportunities, like the one of the kids looking through the window of the famous Le Consulat café, one of the oldest houses in Montmartre, at a sketch artist, while a shepherd dog chilled on the cobblestone street.
The Louvre Museum was our mandatory stop and we even caught a glimpse of the legendary lady of mystery, Mona Lisa.
Our stop in Paris was short but sweet. We left David’s mom and sister at La Tour Eiffel and we hopped on a plane for Spain, the final stop of our honeymoon tour.