A Travellerspoint blog

One last laugh...

only on our LAST night!!

So they check us into a 6 person room with ensuite. So we put our stuff in, shower and come down to use the net. Linds was tired it was like 1am so she goes up to the room. 30 min later she comes down stairs and was like....
'so im in the room and a guy walks in, and then another and 2 more. We are in a room with 4 guys, like in there late 20 & 30's guys'. All i could say is, ure kidding right, ud think they would at least tell you that they are putting two girls in a room with all guys. It was the non-expected for our last night...but gave me a good chuckle at least!!! Weird too, one of the guys 31 and from brampton...lives in the rutherford/kennedy area. There a little bit of home everywhere!!!

Well we are having breakfast right now then going to go catch the bus to the airport. See u all soon!!!

Posted by lins_euro 23:51 Archived in Italy Comments (0)

Day 20

Venezia (Venice the english way)

So this morning I woke up to Billy blarring 80's music (i told him to give me a wake up call so i cant complain too much!). I come downstairs to Billy cooking bacon and eggs. He's wicked, just wicked! We eat breakfast, pack up and head to Venezia.

It was an hour drive. We parked and started walking. We pretty much walked for hours. When i first saw Venezia i thought wow this is breath takingly beautiful. Water everywhere, gondala's, bridges, shops. Thats pretty much all that there is though. It was a fun day regardless..how could it not be with my wicked company! Had pizza...did some shopping and had my first gellato in italy (mmmm)!!!

It was great to have part of the weekend spent with an old friend. I am coming back march break ( and im hoping D, Can, Chuck and Salika are coming with). We are going to go chill with Billy..and we can take the train to some countries nearby!!

We are back in rome..in the same hostel. Leave in the morning to the airport. Flights at 1pm here....get back 5pm T.O. tIme. Cant wait to see everyone!!! Pics to come soon....

Thanks for listening..hope i was able to entertain you a bit over the last few weeks!!
Love Lins

Posted by lins_euro 16:21 Archived in Italy Comments (0)

Day 19

Going to Pordeonne

So i didnt have a computer over the weekend so im going to back post here.

So yesterday we got up pretty early to head to the train station. We took a nice AIR CONDITIONED Euro Star train to Venezia no problem. At Venezia we had to find a train that would go to Pordeonne where Billy is. So we go and ask two people tell us platform 2 and that its free cause we have a europass but it leave in 15 min. So we RUN (Literally) to the platform. We jump on the train...perfect we think we will call him when we get there. Not sooo much. After being on the train for an hour we finally see the women who is checking tickets, so we ask when its getting to our station. She responds with a ...u are on the WRONG train. Oh shit. So we tells us we have to get off in 2 stations and transfer to another train that will take another hour to get to Pordeonne. Totally sucks....but what can u do. Oh i forgot the best part of this train ride. Its hot...really hot. I have my fan out and im fanning myself as im dying. This old italian man sitting across from me who didnt seem to speak any english all of a sudden grabs my fan from me and i say oh ya go ahead thinking he wanted to fan himself. Well wrong, he starts fanning me...haha it was cute but then he wouldnt stop and was doing it forever and it was just became uncomfortably funny.

So we get to this station an hour out of the way. We try to call Billy cause thats what he told me to do. Well the stupid phones in italy are not like in canada. 1st they dont tell u how much money to put in (by the way cheapest is 1.50 euro which is close to $3. Then it talks to you in italian..big problem there!!! There is sooo much more that i could write about what happened at this train station by my fingers will die, its an inperson story for sure.

So we get on the right train...an hour later we get to Pordeonne...yeah! wrong. 1st off i had to pee...i had to pee for like 3 hours but the non'air conditioned train didnt have washrooms. So i go to the toliet and oh wait where the hell was the toliet. I heard of these but had not yet seen one. I freaken HOLE...yes HOLE in the ground. Try squating with a purse trying not to pee on your clothes over a hole ON THE GROUND!!! not cool....and yes i have a picture if u want to see the hole. So we try again to call no luck with the italian phone. Then the men start coming cause they see 2 girls all frazzled. This man from puerto rico comes along chatting me up. i ask him if he knows some italian and he asks whats wrong. Im trying to explain to him that the phones arent working and he passes me his cell phone and i was like can you dial. Then he tells me the message says the phone doesnt work. So we are kind of freaken out cause he was getting weird, some other dude came and sat beside us and we were so lost. So we started walking to find somewhere with internet or someone who speaks English. We walk and see a Best Western. The girl working there was soooo nice and spoke English!! YEAH!!! I explain to her that we are stuck and we cant figure out the phones. She asked to see the phone number and she called. It worked and she passed me the phone...long behold it was BILLY!!!! He was on his way and told us to go back to the station. The lady was super nice, she was going to let us use thelobby computer so we could email him and she gave us two cold glasses of water with ice. It was great. The cutest thing she said to us with her italian accent was 'what are u doing with that stuff on ure back'? haha..i guess they dont get a lot of backpackers there!

So we walk back to the train station and waited. He rolls up in a VW...lol surprise!! So he takes us to the Air Force Base to get food and stuff. I was on a US military base....fun!!! We go to the base grocery store that has all AMERICAN food that is shipped in...it was like home...loved it! Then we went to the base walmart and got some people magazines for the flight home (We've read all of our books).

Then we went to Billy's. His house was nice, very cute and italian (yes i took pics). It is funny because its actually a barn that was converted to a house, but it still looks barn-ish from the outside...very nice inside.

We went and got this wicked pizza. Thicker crust then in rome. We chilled at his house catching us and playing guitar hero til late. It was wicked and worth the stress of being lost. Finally it felt like i was home and not travelling...

Posted by lins_euro 16:04 Archived in Italy Comments (0)

Goodbye Rome...

THANK GOD!!!

sunny

So glad that i am getting the hell out of here in the morning....yeah!!! today didnt seem as hot because i think my body is getting used to this sick heat. i heard it was 39o today!!! Imagine walking around TO doing tourist things in 39\40 weather...no thank u!!!

Today we did a tour of the Vatican...very cool. It is beautiful and the tour was really interesting. 16th chapel was amazing.....wait til u see my pictures, you will see exactly what i mean!!!! We walked to the Spanish Steps...it was pretty there and you got a great view at the top. Then we walked back to Trevi fountain...i definitely think it looks cooler at night then during the day.

Had more pizza and pasta today....thats the thing i will miss about rome the most food!!! carb city man!!

Tomorrow we leave in the morn for a 4.5 hr train right to Venice. Then we have to get a train to Pordeonne where Billy is meeting us. Cant wait to see him.....sorry Salika, i wont forget to give him a "man hug" for you. I will try my best at least.

We are staying with billy tomorrow night then at some point he is taking us to Venice saturday. We will probably roam the city a bit then we have a train back to rome at 7pm. I think we are going to see if we can get a room at this hostel we have been staying at in rome for sat night...then back to Canada!!! Yeah....

Im feeling pretty tired right now and its almost 10pm. im not really in the mood to write any funny stories or type anything else on this weird italian keyboard. So with that im going to go pack my bag and hit the hay.

3 more sleeps... :) Its been a blast but im really looking forward to sunday!!! yeah for moms pasta and my late birthday ice cream cake...cant wait!!!!

I will try to post tomorrow night, not sure what the internet situation will be like. And N Parkers...(chucky...salika, can, joanne) i wont forget to tell billy u all said hi and miss him and are jealous i get to see him! :) heeh

love lins

Posted by lins_euro 12:29 Archived in Italy Comments (0)

Day 17

Rome....

sunny

So i dont like rome. Its absoultely beautiful here, dont get me wrong BUT its soooo hot here i can't stand it. 10 times worse then when i was in mexico, its not like there is a ocean or pool to jump into when u're dying of heat! I just want to get out of italy, i will NEVER NEVER come here in the summer again!! Mark my words.

So to start off...my morning sucked. We got breakfast at the hostel, in the bar area they have, lots of people were eating there. Got a normal, egg, bacon breakfast. It was pretty greasy but food is food down here. Well...i dont know if it was the 'female surprise' i got recently (sorry..dont know who reads this...if i grossed you out) or if i got mild food poisoning but OMG i thought i was going to die. After spending some time in the bathroom and popping my travel friend immodium i felt kind of ok. Though i have crazy cramps and my sides hurt to touch them...hurt! Well i apparently wasn't the only one. There was a long SLOW line up for the washroom. i think we all got food poisoned, needless to say we are NOT eating food here again.

We did a bus tour today. It was HOT....i put sun screen on 6 times. I still think i'm burnt. My skin hurts. This heat is discusting..just discusting. I bought this chinese looking umbrella, its so ugly. Everyone has one here, 'cause the sun is crazy hot!! tomorrow i'm sooo buying a chinese hand fan! haha...popular item here. We got off at the Colosseum. Took some pictures, you needed cash to get in and figures we were both fresh out of euros assuming we could pay with our credit card, apparently NOT!

Tonight after dinner (its already 8pm here) we are going to walk to Trevi Fountain and the Spanish steps.

Well thats it for now, not much to report on today other then i'm tired. 16 days straight of crazy travel to 5 places all by plane, metro, train and my FEET (which need a pedicure) all i can say is i'm tired...so so tired. I can't wait for sunday...as beth would say 4 more sleeps!!!

Love Lins

Posted by lins_euro 10:51 Archived in Italy Comments (0)

Day 16

Hello hot hot Rome

sunny

15 hours later on a train i am in rome. Im tired, have a cronic headache and really im ready to stop crazy travelling right now. The only thing thats going to keep me motivated this week is that im seeing Billy on FRIDAY!!! But really im ready to come home and get back to reality.

Yesterday we were sitting in a park for hours (we had a lot of time to kill) because our train wasnt until 6pm. And for the first time during this trip i started thinking about home. and it instantly stressed me out. I have SOOO MUCH stuff to do when i get back. a math exam the following wk that i need 50% on to pass the course that i need for school. Problem is i dont know anything, my brother did it for me and he has to teach me a whole semester of math without using a calculator :S I have my NY state exam on the 24th (cause i failed it the 1st time by 5 freaken marks....grrrr). Clearly i need to study or something for that cause god help me if i fail it again. Then i have to go to buffalo the next 2 wkends in a row, and i have quite a bit of school work to hand in that i havent even looked at since they are the last 2 wkends of the semester. did i mention i have one of my students for 3 wks, im bringing him to camp starting the tuesday (yes i will probably be extremely jet lagged). Like i said i want to go home but when i do i think im going to die. I really miss some of my friends, i cant wait to see u guys and spend time together (my new problem of course, finding time to spend time with you!).

so yesterday we spent the day bumming around in Paris near our hotel. Waited another 2 hrs at the train station. Train was from 7pm until 11:30am today. We had what is called a choussanette (sorry totally didnt spell that right). 6 people in this tiny little room with 2 beds that come out of the wall at the ceiling (there was a rack there too for luggage) and then 3 seats bunk style facing eachother. The back of the seat folded out making 2 more beds, so there was 3 on each side. When it was in bed style you couldnt really move and they were too narrow to sit up in. It was a little small for comfort, lucky there were no panic attacks! We had this young couple (when i say young i mean 19-20 which is young to me these days!) from korea who spoke barely any english and 2 sisters from nigeria who spoke better english but it wasnt that great still. Needless to say the 10 hr train ride with these 4 people to Milan was interesting!!! Then we got off at 5:35am and had 1 1/2 hrs wait in Milan then grabbed another train from 7am-11:30am to Rome. At least our hostel is only a 8 min walk from the train station.

We are staying at a decent hostel, its called the yellow. They have there own bar next door to the hostel, im in there now where i rented a laptop. We are in a 4 bed room with a washroom and shower in our room (bonus). Havent seen our roommates yet, when i left the room no one was assigned there yet.

So rome, rome is bloody hot. Like so discusting i feel like i can barely breath. Doesnt motivate me to want to do anything outside, its seriously so hot. Im going to fry here. I have yet to be burnt but i had to put sunscreen on 4 times a day in paris. If you know me, you know the sun is not my friend, i really dont want to be in it, its super heavy hot here and its going to hurt my skin. I literally slept the whole 4.5 hrs train ride here and then i slept for 3.5hrs in the hostel when we got here. I just showered and unpacked and this is the 1st thing ive done here. its almost 7pm. We have 2 days in rome...not sure what we are doing yet. Friday we leave at 8:40am to venice. I have to call Billy when we get there and hes either picking us up from the station depending on when he gets off work or we will take a train to Perdonne to meet him there. We are staying with him friday night and then the 3 of us are going to drive to venice saturday and just walk around and stuff. We have a train at 6pm back to rome that night. We are now thinking of getting a hotel close to the airport. After yesterday i can not sleep in an airport and really after taking the train for 5 hrs that day and staying in a airport for over 12 hrs to sit on a plane for 7 hrs will be so killer. So i figure if we stay in a hotel at least we can shower sleep a bit and take our time to be at the airport before 11am then the flight might be more relaxing.

I think i forgot to mention the BEST part about being in italy!! I do not understand ANY...i mean ANY italian nor do i know anything other then per favour (please) and grati (thanks). Can we saw SCREWED!! at least i could understand french...haha

Well im going to log off since this is costing $$$. Hope everyone is well. Think of me sweating to death in the heat while you are complaining of rain (right now id pay for rain!)

til tomorrow....love lins

(ps...im using a italian computer and the punctuation keys are in weird places so thats why this is poorly written, im not waiting time looking for the right keys...)

Posted by lins_euro 09:34 Archived in Italy Comments (0)

Day 14

Auvoir Paris....

sunny

Today is our last full day in Paris (tear!!). Honestly can say this place is fabulous....theres just this weird feeling you get when your in Paris. Its so nice looking, romantic, laid back, just fab!!!

We went on a 1/2 day tour to Versaille. Versaille is about 45 min outside of Paris. For thoughs of you know do not know what Versaille is, it is a huge castle that was the official residence of Louis the XIV, XV, XVI. Ever seen the movie Marie-Antoinette? It is the only movie that has been filmed at Versaille. If your interested about it, check out this link. http://www.chateauversailles.fr/en/ If you ever come to Paris, take a day trip there, my mom was right its sooo worth it!!

Then we grabbed some lunch back in Pairs at a bristo. Chicken and fries, it was ok, they all service the same food. I'm not overly excited about french food, i can't wait for italy, mostly because i can't stand to eat anymore sandwiches. All of the food places here have all the same food, roasted chicken, tartare (which is RAW meat...NASTY!!), hamburger with fried egg (just as gross), weird sandwiches, salade (which is literally lettuce, with NOTHING on it, including dressing dressing). The only thing we appreciated eating here were crepes (tho i only had one, i dont need to be gaining weight 'cause i'm on vacation), and the baked goods. There are bakeries at every corner, croussants, tartes, fresh baguettes, it was all good and fattening. I never eat bread, and i've had more bread this wk then i probably have had in over a month. I can't wait to eat salad and chicken when i come home with crystal light water...mmmm

After lunch we decided to go see "le Tour de France" as it was finishing here just around the corner from the Louvre. 3 hours in the hot hot sun, the cyclers started riding in. The waiting totally sucked, i put sunscreen on 4 times and my face and chest is still burnt. Have i ever told you how much i hate the sun. It doesnt like me, it just burns me, hurts me and makes me pink like a lobster. Even though our feet hurt and the sun was hot it was a fun experience. And of course we bought ourselves bright yellow tour de france tshirts!!! Spain's Sastre won the Tour do France!!

Dinner was McDonalds. I know gross. and i dont even like Mcdonalds, i haven't had it in over a year and i had it in ireland and paris. But for a good reason. We were going to go to the grocery store to buy food and it was closed. In fact, almost everything is closed here today, why? "cause its sunday, the day of church and family...what BS is that?!? I said to Linds, i remember when i was in grade school and the mall finally started opening on sunday's. we are talking years ago. Apparently in Europe they care more about religion and family days then we do in North America. Its rather annoying having nothing open, makes you appreciate things being open 24/7 at home!!

Well i'm planning on repacking my pack (for the 2nd last time...yeah!) tonight so i can sooo sleep in tomorrow!! We have to be out of the hotel by noon. We are thinking of just going to starbucks for a few hours and chilling then going to the train station early and just hanging out there until the train at 6pm. totally sucks but we can't walk around with our pack. Someone will rob us if we dont melt to death first. Probably wont' update this tomorrow as i'll be on a train all night and i doubt they have internet so i guess i'll be updating you in Italy on Tuesday. Guaranteed i'll have some good stories, travel days are always good craziness fun and we have yet to train it and we know absoultely NO italian so i think its going to be extremely interesting how this pans out.

Top things from Paris:
- the Great Canadian Pub
- croussants
- crepes
- Versaille
- Tour de France
- berets!!!
- champion supermache (yeah cheap food!)
- HOTEL not hostel...yeah!!!
- Coca-cola LIGHT (its not diet here...its light)
- Effiel tower
- Lovre
- Musee D'Orsay
- churches, churches and more churches
- starting to talk french to someone who right away can tell your not french and they suddenly switch to english on you (how am i suppose to learn?? geez!!)
- garden de Luxemburg
- cruise on the seine river

Worst things about Paris:
- gypsies
- metro...weird and smells
- rediculously expensive dinners

One more week 'til i'm home.!!! Can't wait to see u guys!!

Mach and Melissa...we are doing small cheese and crackers with carrot sticks at Mach's when i get back (lol..happy i mentioned u know mach? haha...)

Love Lins

Posted by lins_euro 09:50 Archived in France Comments (0)

Day 13

Paris!!!

sunny

Well today was a busy day. We did a bus tour around Paris all day getting on and off the bus when we wanted. Went to Musee D'Orsay. I loved it sooo much more then the Louvre, saw lots of Van Gogh, Monet and Degas. i love Degas!!! Then we went to Champs Elysee, Arc de Trimophe, and the Tour Effiel!! We got off at the tower took pics and decided that its really not that exciting. It actually pretty ugly if you really look at it. We think that the CN Tower rocks the Effiel tower and at least there aren't gypsies hassling you at the CN Tower. The line up with big and we were both pretty satified with standing under it so we hopped back on the bus. But we did decide to do a 1 hr cruise on the Seine River, that was pretty cool.

Today we saw lots of dirty gypsies, and these police guards (in full army print gear) standing outside the effiel tower gates with machine guns in their hands!! Hello freaky!!!

We also bought tickets to go on a bus trip to Versaille tomorrow. I'm super excited, i've always wanted to go. Our trip is at 9am which means we are going to have to wake up and boot it out the door at 8am since we aren't entirely sure where we have to be for 9.

Greatest thing ever happened to us on the walk from the Seine to the hotel. I saw it, the pub. Angela told me about this pub and i totally forgot all about it. and here i'm walking down the seine and i see it: "the great canadian pub"!!! I SWEAR TO GOD!! They import canadian beer, have canadian food, menu is in ENGLISH and they have maple leafs all over the bar, a mounty statue wearing a team Canada jersey and they show canadian sports on tv. We were sooo excited and we went to eat there. It costed us 41 euro (so times that by 1.6 to see how much we spent in canadian) for 2 cesars (if u know me well u'd know i LOVE cesears...candice and my drink and u can only get them in canada or the great canadian pub in paris...haha), 1 plate of chicken quesadilla and 1 plate of nachos with chilli. Can u believe we spent that much money on that....haha But it was sooo cozy in there, just like a pub at home. It was the 1st time everything was in english, english music playing, it was nice to order food and know what was in it and that it would come out how u expected it. I have the menu, the nice french waiter let me take one. I'm telling you these french men....oh la la!!!

Speaking of food, i'm sure some of you will have a nice chuckle over my lunch. So we stop at this restuarant (the same french food that they all sell). I'm feeling brave to order beef (you know i haven't been 'cause i'm terrified to get uncooked food here, i've heard stories! lol) I order what on the menu was "hamburger with fried egg and french fries". Now they do the fried egg thing here alot, they even put it on the middle of your pizza. I'm not really into the fried egg thing, but is it going to kill me? no..and its extra protein, plus i figure if it looks sketchy i just wont eat it. So my plate comes out and its literally a chunk of meat (yes it was COOKED, no pink i told the waiter no pink really really cooked like 6 times!) with a fried egg on it (yoke still in the bubble) and french fries. Lindsay and i look at either and she says this is not was i was expecting, i said same here. I ordered a hamburger, where the hell is the bloody bun? I want carbs..i dont eat much when i'm here and this chunk of meat and fried egg cost me like $17 CAD which is rediculous....i was mad. never getting hamburger here again. So in case your planning on coming to france anytime soon, a hamburger is not what we think a hamburger is! lol

Well i'm super wiped. Its 11pm here, and i've been up in the sun forever. Tomorrow should be fun..can't believe its my last full day left in Paris!!

'til tomorrow
Love Lins

Posted by lins_euro 13:49 Archived in France Comments (0)

Day 12

Paris

sunny

Today was another lazy day...the longer your gone the more tired you get. At first your excited, oh an old historic church, then after you've seen 20 historic church you almost dont care and its just a church, like the other 100 churches you've already seen. I'm starting to feel like that.

We left the hotel late, and ventured the metro for the train station. More then an hour later and a lot of stresses we booked our train to rome. Problem is, we were planning on leaving monday morning for rome (we have to be out of the hotel at noon). We figured we've spend the day on the train getting to rome that night. But no, there were no day trains available that didnt' cost $200 more, so we have a night train leaving at 6pm on Monday. Problem is we weren't going to be in paris then and have nowhere to put our stuff. And its hot here, there is no way we are walking around with huge full backpacks for the day in Paris. Luckly, it sounds like they will be able to keep them in a storage room i the hotel monday during the day so we can at least wonder around paris for most of the day. So we will arrive around 11am tues in rome. On Friday we booked our train for 8:50am to Venice. Next problem, the train we get from Venice to Pordonne (where Billy is) has a 6 hour gap between when we get to Venice and when the train to Pordonne leaves. So we'll see what billy says....i emailed him already. Then we booked our train for Sat Aug 2nd at 6pm from Venice arriving in Rome at 11pm. Then we will find the airport and sleep there. Are flight home is at 1:20pm. So that is probably going to be the suckiest part of the trip, no where to stay and being in the airport for 12 hrs sleeping to be on a plane for 7 hours. To get home at 5pm tired and jet lagged. I'm still going out that night with my friends, i dont care how tired i am!!! Afterall, Chuck's apparently going to be waiting at my doorstep so i wont have much of a choice anyways! haha

So it worked out ok, we are in Paris for an extra day but now we only have 3 days in Rome. After the train station we went to eat at a little cafe. I got chicken and fries. It was bloody good, not even comparibly close as good as a quater chicken at swiss chalet but seeing as i haven't been eating chicken or much meat it was good chicken!!!

Then we walked to Notre Dame. Beautiful cathedral....just beautiful!!! I was suppost to meet Chambers (for u parkholme ppl) as shes been in france this summer. But there was thousands of people outside of Notre Dame. I waited forever and couldn't find her (tear).

But i did have my 1st french crepe with nutella and banana...mmmmmmmmmmmmm!!!!!!!! rebecca and mandy..i thought of u guys and Demetres!! lol

Made Beef Ravoli for dinner...so not french or what u'd think u'd eat in paris but it was 70 cents and not a sandwich (thats all we eat!) but i did have it with a baguette and butter....classic french add on.

My french is kind of improving. On the way home when we stopped off for our daily pasterie desert fix, i ordered my tarte and crossant all in french without assistance!!! YEAH!!!! i felt proud.

I hate gypsie women...they freak me out. There are sooo many here, we ran into so many today. They pick pocket and are freaky scary. i get creeped out when i see them. They are always in the metro and are in the tourist areas a lot. We also noticed today that there are a lot of homeless people in paris. It was not like this at all in london!!! It makes paris dirty and gross, i'm almost starting to not like it here as much because its full of dirty people and all these gypsies....just really creeps me out. i'm glad its not like that in brampton, i'd move!!

I forgot to mention another dirty thing that happened to us yesterday (adding to the dirty paris thing). So Linds and i were walking down a street to the Patheon. When randomly a dead pigeon leeped and fell off a fence almost ONTO US!!!! It was crust-a-fied and crunched really loudly when it feel dropped right in front of us. We screamed and ran very fast away from it. How freaken nasty is that?!?

Also...to add to the weirdness of France. There cars are small but completely and totally banged UP!!! They parallel
park on the road, most of the cars bumpers are actually touching as they are parked. Then to get out of the parking spot, they hit the car in front, then reverse to the one behind, then re-hit the front one, re-bump the back one, and eventually make it out. Its rediculous...the cars all have crazy dents (we are talking nice NEW cars). If this was home, people would freak out having someone hit there car. Its so different here, if i lived here i woudlnt' even get a license, i'd walk and metro it. Cars and the motorbikes are scary on the road...craziest driving i've ever seen.

I can't believe we only have 9 days left. We've done a lot so far but its really flown by!! Tomorrow we are going to do the bus tour, we found out where the bus stops!! (yeah) so we'll see where we end up going.

"til tomorrow
Love Lins

Posted by lins_euro 12:40 Archived in France Comments (0)

Day 11

Paris...u can survive here with broken french!!!

sunny

So, to start off the day we didnt wake up 'til 10am! i love sleeping in a hotel room and not a bunk bed room with 7 of my closest and newest friends. We ate breakfast in our room, its our new Paris thing. We found a 'supermarche' and bought yogurt, baguettes (coming out of my ass), apples, bananas, peachs, cheese, sandwich meat...and LOTS of 1/5L of Coca-cola LIGHT (as they call it here). All i drink all night is Coke....LOVE having something from home, and if u know me pretty well u know before i started being miss healthy lifestyle i was a coke feen!! We also bought snack food to bring with us. Today we went to the grocery store and bought a huge tin of Beef Ravioli for dinner tomorrow. They have a microwave downstairs that the receptionist said they would heat stuff up for us. So we bought 2 tupperware containers and tomorrow its ravioli. Sounds ghetto i know, but im not spending no 50 euro on dinner. So we just buy something for lunch. Today i had my 1st french quiche and french fries...mmmmm good!

We walked to the Pantheon. It was amazingly beautiful inside. And i found Louis Braille's tomb in the crypt. I did not know he was buried there...very cool. Obviously i took pics!! Then we walked, got a little lost looking for the bus tour and stopped at a souvenir shop where i bought MYSELF a wicked itchy 100% wool grey berret. I'm officially french!! You'd be surprised how many people wear them here..its slightly amusing. We walked to the Jardin de Luxembourg....my pictures do not do it justice. We just dont have parks like this at home, not even close!! We walked to St. Silpice which is a church mentioned in the Da Vinci code where the albino munk Silas thought he would find the Chalis. It was very nice..also our 1st encounter with dirty gypsies. They are freaky...we didnt give eye contact had our arms on our bags and walked FAST, but they and there gypsie daughters are scary looking.

We took the Metro to the Musee du Louvre. Its huge, amazingly beautifully HUGE!!!! We probably walked around only a quarter of it, but saw so much. Of course we saw the Monet Lisa and i have pictures. Then we took the metro to Louis Vuitton!! and Dior!!!! It was heaven. if you know me well, you know my love for expensive purses and handbags. I was tempted to get another LV just cause it's straight from Paris but i'm too into Coach bags right now. God forbid i have a LV wallet in a Coach purse! hahaha...that could never happen, how tacky!!

We then went to Starbucks..sat outside and just drank a frappacino and watched paris in action. When we got back to the hotel i showered and washed my clothes asap. Holy sweaty!!! Its bloody hot here...we aren't used to it, it was really cold in the Uk. I guess i probably wont be wearing pants or my jacket again on the trip. Italy is even hotter right now...its gross being out all day and feelind sweaty.

Anyways...i'm happy about my shoes find. i bought 2 pairs of french sandals today. Super cheap..and super stylish. You would LOVE the shoes that are in style here, omg..i can't even explain them. candice u are going to LOVE 'em. Email me u're shoe size can and i'll get u a pair!!!

Weird things we've noticed"
- you have to push a button on the door on the metro (the subway) on the outside and inside for the door to open..they dont just automatically open when the train stops
- everytime we leave the hotel we have to give them our key...and its a KEY not a swipe card. Then we pick the key up when we come back.
- restaurants are only open during meal times...like most are open 7-9pm for dinner (dinner here is 7pm!) and they are closed the rest of the day other then lunch (if they serve lunch its 12-2).
- you eat a pastery 'snack' after lunch and dinner...everyone does!!!

I've had a lot of bread here...really really good bread, but i dont normally eat any bread. So i feel very full and fat most of the time. I love travelling but i want my real food at home..and i want to go running...run run run....

Tomorrow we are probably going to hit up some museums...and maybe the effiel tower tomorrow. We are going to look into a night cruise on the Seine river...i think that would be pretty cool

Love Lins

Posted by lins_euro 13:21 Archived in France Comments (0)

Day 10

Paris!!

sunny

So our hotel is fabulous!! Two twin beds (did i mention they touch each other literally, so it looks like its a queen/king size but its really 2 beds). Large room for a paris room, our own bathroom with shower. Little desk and chair. A small fridge (yeah!!) and a safe (yeah..no wearing money belts all day long!!).

Its really nice being back in a hotel. we have all of our clothes out of our packs, and things are spread out. its nice having your own space and being messy and not worrying about leaving things out.

Doing laundry was quite the experience. We had no clue how the machines worked, and there were NO instructions anywhere. After watching us look pretty confused this old italian looking women who was obviously french tried to help us by hitting the english instructions that speak on a machine. After using body language, dramatic arts and trying everything we kind of figured out how to buy the soap and get the machine working. Poor women tried so hard to help us, you can tell she was getting frustrated. Any senior came in the laundry mat and was actually able to speak some english. She was very helpful but again got confused by everything i was trying to say to her in french and english and then she was trying to translate to the other women what we were saying. 20 minutes later our laundry was being washed and i had a huge stress headache from that interesting conversation!! The women who spoke some english was sooo cute. she was trying to tell us its very safe to leave our things and there is a park 5 min away we could go sit in and read so we didnt have to sit in their. She had me follow her outside the store and was pointing at stuff and just kept on saying, je comprend je comprend! lol

While doing laundry i decided to walk down the street to see if i could find somwhere for us to eat. I heard a couple speaking english so i ran up to them and asked if they could help me...hehe They were American, so so American, southern accent was worse then the buffalo one i get the pleasure of hearing twice a month! They told me about a market down the street they found and we chatted. It was nice talking to someone who can speak english!!

So we went to this market, more like a convenience store. I asked the guy if he spoke english and he said no. I tried to ask him questions using crappy french which seemed to make it worse. He started giving me your an idiot get out look. I was getting frustrated. Then this chinnese man came in, and the grocery guy asked him if he spoke english. He said very little and i asked him how to say peanut butter (which i apparently dont know what it is in french, i thought it was bur de peanut....laurie i wish u were here what the hell is it?) the guy was talking english how i was talking french, starting to get frustrated on how he couldnt' do it. I decided to crack a joke and said "now u guys know how i feel"lol they understood that and started laughing. After a few minutes i tried to speak my broken french again as lindsay and i were buying some stuff. The grocery guy said to me, vous-parlez francais...and i answered non, une petite peu. I could understand everything he was saying to me, but i just can't remember what the words are to talk back. its annoying me, i'm trying to study my phrase book, i want to be able to speak better!! Anyways, i was trying to talk to him in frnech and joked that i was going to come back on Vendri (friday) and i would be able to speak french with him by then. He said he wasn't going to be there all week and i was like oh, ok. Then next thing you know he says i could call him and speak french to him then since he wont be at work. Thinking he was joking (clearly) i was like ok, sounds good. Does he not write down his name and phone number, then teaches me how to pronounce his name "Kalil" and reads out his number. We leave and he says he'll talk to be vendri soir. Lindsay just stood there the whole time laughing...and we walked out and i turned to her and said, did i just pick up in the market haha... i got a phone number from a french man and didnt even notice he was hitting on me. i have problems. That was the funny for the day!!

We took more naps, been watching french tv so we can learn more french conversation. We found a grocery store and bought fruit, snacks, juice, sandwich meat and cheese, salad and huge baguette bread. We made baguette sandwiches and salad for dinner. Food here is really expensive in the area we are in. Meals (that include appetizers, main course and desert are 50 euros. $1.50 CAD=1 euro...way too expensive. We also bought some stuff for breakfast. So we are going to have breakfast and dinner in our room and buy lunch when we are out during the day. Hopefully we'll save some money that way. I've also had a croissant and esclair... soooo much better then home! i was in HEAVEN!!!

We are here 'til monday...i like it here. Tomorrow we are going to probably do a bus tour, there are 4 tours so we will try to do al 4. Still planning the rest of the week. Well i'll off to bed..'til tomorrow!!

Love lins

Posted by lins_euro 13:55 Archived in France Comments (1)

Bonjour Mes Amis!!!

Je suis dans PARIS!!

sunny

Ok so my french is definitely RUSTY...sorry mom your probably ashamed. Seeing as i'm the girl who went to La Petite E'cole Francais (yes french nursery school), french immersion from kindergarten to grade 8, then core french all through out high school to OAC and i dying here. I understand it better then i can speak it these days. I hate feeling dumb, so far we've felt dumb. The worst part is it takes forever to look what u want up in your langauge guide. I could act it out faster then trying to find it to say it.

We got up at 3am. Lost another hours getting here. I'm tired we've been up for 11 hrs already and its only 3pm here (almost 9am your time). So we aer 6 hrs ahead now. i'm going to feel like crap when i get back in 1 1/2 wks..the time change is going to tire me. So we found our hotel pretty easily, took longer to ask where everything is tho. Some nice people came up to us on the street corner and offered to help us with directions, i guess we looked confused with our map. Too bad they only spoke french and we were all getting frustrated! lol Then a women who could speak English came to the rescue.

So i took a nap, then my 1st shower in 4 days. I feel wicked now that i finally shaved...OMG i can't even explain. it was like i went camping for a wk and swam in a lake! lol Its hot here, like high 20's low 30's, so like normal summer. I'm in a skirt!! YEAH!! The UK was cole 10-13 most days so we were in a sweater, jacket, shoes, pants. this is nice.

We found out that there is a laundry mat down the street. We are going now to wash our clothes...YEAH!! more cleanness!!!! We are in a nice neiughbourhood, everything is very pretty looking. So far i LOVE PARIS!!! I'll write later on tonight about what else we ended up doing!!!

Have a nice day everyone...u all probably just started work! suckers :) (i'm saying that in the nicest of ways)

Posted by lins_euro 05:46 Archived in France Comments (0)

Oh ya

Forgot to mention..i'm going to MISS how they put BACON on everything in the Uk.

Bacon i'm going to miss u.

and James finally just bought my 1st Curly Wurly....yummy!

Posted by lins_euro 12:02 Comments (0)

Day 9

Good bye Ireland!! YEAH

overcast

So today was my 2nd and LAST day in Dublin...such a shame NOT! haha

We took the bus tour for the 3rd time so we could get to the Guinness storehouse. Its pretty far from where we are and why not take a bus tour there since we already paid for it. We are all about getting our money's worth on this trip. Guinness i'd say is the highlight of this stop over of the trip. I learned all about Guinness, how its made and whats in it. Did you know its not actually black but a ruby red which you can see when you hold the glass up into the light?!? A sick but slightly interesting fact, they brew 4 million pints of Guinness here a day and they ship 1/2 of it out and keep 2 million for ireland. 2 million pints a day for IRELAND!!! These people apparently really LOVE their Guinness!!! At the end of the tour we got a free pint of Guinness...which made me remember how much i HATE Guinness. It tastes like your drinking nasty wood. Anyhoo..it was FUN!!! there is some fun in dublin to be found!

Then this afternoon we went to the movies....i know who goes to the movies when they are backpacking in europe. But really there is nothing else to do here. We saw Mama Mia, which is fabulously funny!!! Go see it if you haven't already.

We are taking a taxi at 4am to the airport. This is the 4th time i've flown in just over a week which is funny seeing as I have only flown once before this trip years ago! lol We have a 6:10am flight to Paris which is nuts but it was cheaper so you got to sacrifice sleep in order to be able to save some dollars. I'm excited about Paris, its the place that i wanted to go to the most on the trip, hopefully it wont disappoint and be fabulously great. (BTW..if you haven't picked it up yet, fabulous...or fabulously...is my new favourite word at the moment!).

Its nuts to think 13 days left. Sounds like a lot still but we've already been to London, Scotland and Ireland, only have France and Italy left. The time is just flying by. As much as i love traveling i can't wait to come home and see my friends, have my room and my car. I just want to go running and eat fruit and vegetables soooo badly!! I feel so out of shape from just walking everywhere. I keep on thinking that i need to start training for the 5K race i'm doing at the end of august, at this rate its going to take me forever to finish the race. But i'll be coming home to school and work which i'm not really looking forward too so i think i'm better off here for the moment.

I think i'm all talked out for the moment (bet you never thought you'd hear me say that!! haha).....I'll write from Paris! Hope everyone is doing great!!

Love Lins

Posted by lins_euro 10:10 Archived in Ireland Comments (0)

Day 8

Hello Dublin....crappy crappy Dublin

overcast

So we are in Dublin, the capital of Ireland. Did i also mention it is a complete shit hole and i`m mad i wasted a penny coming to this place! Lindsay and I have discussed this, we are glad that we came to ireland so we have experienced it and can say we have been here but if we could leave today (btw we`ve been here for a total of 10 hrs) we would in a second. With that being said, i just dont get this place. I`m sure the country area here is nice and maybe some of the small cities but really Dublin is awlful. There is nothing exciting to do or see here other then going to the Guninness Brewery (which we are going tomorrow and having our free pint!). There are a billion unknown old churches...i`m churched out from London, and i`m not doing churches unless they are somewhat famous churches, and taverns everywhere with Guninness signs outside (clearly) which out number churches. Theres a mall, with the same stores that are overpriced that we saw in London and Scotland and there seems to be a theme of monuments EVERYWHERE of a dead irishman that appeared to have faught against the English at some point in time...its seems to be a trend here!

The one cool thing that I can say about Dublin is it has a nice park. St. Stephenson`s Square is a huge park that is beautiful. We walked around it and discovered a little park in it for the BLind and Visually Impaired. Clearly i was excited, and took pictures of the braille plated labels of all of the flowers/herbs for the blind to enjoy. I was surprised to find that here!

  • Sidenote: i've never seen so many disabled people roaming around on streets as i have in the UK. And i work with the disabled....weird! There were sooo many people in wheelchairs esp in London and i saw many many people who are blind and visually impaired. They have great braille signage everywhere. Cane detectable braile cells at EVERY pedestrian crossing, and they aren't just right at the curb they lead a path to the curb. They have tactile lines to detect when you are at the end of the platform on the tube (they aren't the braille cell ones that we have on the TTC but similar), on all the trains, tube and buses there are verbal instructions to what stop is next, what transfer you can do at the stop and then when it stops it tells you what the stop name is. And ALL i mean ALL the pedestrian crossings have auditory signals for crossings. The UK is a person who is blind's best friend. i'd LOVE to teach O & M here!!!

Now, i'm sure you are all wondering what our hostel is like. The one in Edinburgh was goregous, new, clean, almost like a hotel room. Well the "Dublin International Youth Hostel" is fabulous alright, ghetto fabulous that is. The main recpetion area was ok, hippy-ish but had character. Then we went in the room, 4 bunk beds, metal frames that are painted bright blue, a sink, a few lockers that fit our packs and the dirtiest carpet ever. So i went on a search for the washroom...sorry "toliet" as they call it here. It is nasty. 2 stalls, so gross...and it just looks dirty. Words can not describe how tempted i am to hold my pee in for 2 days so i dont have to squat at one of tho's bowls. Then we went to find the showers....i wont even try to describe them. Let's put it this way, we've both decided that we aren't showering for another day until we are in Paris in our private hotel room with our own bathroom!

OK, this is starting to sound very negative. We aren't going to die here, i'm sure there is worse. One more night and we are out of here and it'll only get better! (i hope!). Plan tomorrow is Guinness in the morn and then we are going to catch a movie, probably Mama Mia. There isn't really anything else to see, we did the bus tour twice today and nothing else really interested us. We have to leave around 3am tomorrow night 'cause our flight is 6:40am on Wed to Paris. So its going to be another really early day with no sleep.

I forgot to mention this morning. We were suppose to get up at 4:30am to leave at 4:50am to walk to the bus stop to catch the bus at 5:20am to get to the airport by 6am. Well i didnt hear my watch alarm (surprise), so we slept in, i woke linds at 5am we caught the 5:40 bus after running with our FULL packs on our back half way down Prince's Street to almost miss the bus. We got to the airport on time, but man was it stressful. The flights are so short (not even an hour) you just dont really get any sleep. Its almost 9:30pm here now and i'm exhausted..going to go to bed very shortly. I feel pathetic, on vacation and i go to bed before 11pm most nights. But walking around all day and being lost is tiring.

Well..i think thats all the excitment and negativity i can dish out in one night. I'll update how fabulous the Guinness tour was tomorrow!!! Oh...we are going to try to find a pub to get some Irish Stew tomorrow...has anyone had it? Is it good??

Love Lins

ps...last sidenote. Somehow my pack has grown so much that i almost had to pay a over fee (linds did and man is it expensive). I started with 27lbs in To 8 days ago. Now i'm at 35lbs. Now flying home with Zoom we can have 44 lbs, but ryanair..which we are flying to Paris with its 33lbs. I was just over but the guy was nice and didnt say anything. I am going to try to pack more in my carry on..might ditch some tolietteries and clothes. This is sooo annoying. So dont be mad when i come home with no souvenir for you because i have ONE pack and its full and heavy and i have to lug it around with me and its annoying. And i'm poor 'cause everything here is rediculously expensive so i can't afford to pay an over fee. Just warning you...laur there may not be a barret.

pps...I didnt think it was possible but dublin is more expensive then london. I spent 5 euro (thats $7.50 CAD) on a tuna melt sandwich today. How rediciulous is that?!? Dont come to europe unless your rich or you have a rich man to pay for everything! lol

ppps...last one i promise! i have been forgetting to mention how flippoing cold the UK is. I walk around in runners, socks, lu lu PANTS, tank top, tshirt, my 1 hoodie and my MEC gortex jacket and its still cold. Its like 10-12 most days. and it constantly rains. Dont complain its 40 at home..i WISH! Their summer is crap!

Posted by lins_euro 12:55 Archived in Ireland Comments (1)

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