Monday, July 16, 2018

Paris ’18, Day 1 – Arrival and Shopping

Hi everyone!
I’m back from my trip to Paris and I had a really, really fun time, so I can’t wait to tell you all about it! Usually I prefer to write my travel posts in chronological order, but if I have to start on my Japan posts before the Paris posts, it will just take forever. I will get to them though, just a bit later. I hope you will forgive me. ^^

On Thursday July 5th my mom and I woke up at 5:30 am, got dressed and packed our last things before my dad drove us to Amsterdam central station. The day before our Paris trip last year I got very sick, so I had made sure my packing went as relaxed as I could make it, which helped a lot.
My mom and I said goodbye to my dad and dragged our suitcases to the right platform. We were 30 minutes early, so we sat down on a bench and just waited.

Destination Paris
Our train would leave at 7:17 am.

My mom did her make-up and we chatted a bit. What a difference from last year, when I was feeling so dizzy the world just spun around me. I felt a lot better during this trip!
The train arrived after about 15 minutes, which was very nice, because it gave us lots of time to get on the train.

Ready to Go
Posing in front of our train in my travel outfit. ^^

Our train departed right on time and our journey to Paris began!
Although the Thalys is a high-speed train, it doesn’t drive at full speed until halfway the journey. Nevertheless, it already goes quite fast!
My mom and I spent our train time talking, eating our breakfast and observing our fellow passengers. We were especially intrigues by a girl a few chairs away from us, who sounded really young and ignorant. However, she turned out to have a really young voice, but she was definitely older than we expected! Also, the couple next to us turned out to be… probably brother and sister! We had a lot of fun. XD

Thalys Views
Our breakfast consisted of a cookie and apple juice.

We passed the airport, Rotterdam, Antwerp, Brussels and finally we were almost in Paris already! We had a delay of about 13 minutes, but since we weren’t in a rush at all we didn’t really care. Before we knew it, my mom and I stood on Gare du Nord!
We left the station, crossed the street and arrived at the hotel we would be staying. Since it wasn’t check-in time yet, we left our suitcases at the hotel and went back to the station to prepare our travel passes. As always we decided to use Navigos, because even though they only run Monday-Sunday, they still end up cheaper than normal travel cards. Unfortunately I had lost mine during my big bedroom cleanout, so we bought me a new Navigo. I decided at the moment to separately recharge my mom’s card, which was a mistake, because the machine somehow ended up refusing, saying it hadn’t charged us (turns out: it did. We’re still trying to get it back). So we visited the lady behind the desk again and finally, we could go on our way!
My mom asked where I wanted to go first, and you can probably guess it: the Angelic Pretty shop! My mom agreed and so we went on our way to station Tuileries.
We arrived there a bit before 12 pm and I was overjoyed to see my beloved pink storefront, complete with gorgeous Sweet Lolitas in front of it! The Angelic Pretty shop is located next to the beautiful Tuileries park, where they have a ferris wheel every summer, which makes for such a stunning backdrop for pictures!

Angelic Pretty Paris One
I love the location of the Angelic Pretty shop so much! ♥

When I came closer, I realised the Lolitas in question were from Finland! Some I had met before, some were new to me, so I was very happy to meet them! After a bit of chatting, my mom and I entered the store.
Inside I met up with Roxane, who, being the absolute angel that she is, had waited in line for the store for me to purchase some items so I could get a ticket for RinRin’s meet&greet. RinRin and Risa Nakamura, the special guests for the Tea Party, would have special meet&greets with people who purchased items at the Angelic Pretty store for over 30 euros. I was afraid the tickets would sell out before I got the chance to get one, so I had asked Roxane to please buy two of the exclusive rosettes for sale at the store for me and my friend Emilie and she agreed to do so! I got a cute rosette and the chance to meet RinRin! I was so happy and grateful! ♥
I was happy to see some people I knew, like dear Liona and her mom, and browsed the store for a bit, which was nice. There were a lot of lovely dresses and some exclusive goods for the fair leading up to the Tea Party, like a lovely key chain, clear files and plushes. Nevertheless I was satisfied with just my rosette and soon after we left the shop again (I finally didn’t spend too much time there to annoy my mom, yay)! Of course, a picture in front of the shop was obligatory!

Angelic Pretty Paris Two
Posing in front of my favourite store.

While my mom took that picture, she balanced my hat on top of her own hat. It was so funny! XD
We were just about to leave when I suddenly realised… I had forgotten to ask for my Tea Party invitation! Such an important thing and I nearly forgot it! I quickly re-entered the store, got Emilie’s invitation and my own and left again. I felt so dumb, ah… x)
My mom and I decided to have some lunch, so we started heading for Japanese bakery Aki. On the way there I quickly went into bookstore Junku to ask for a specific magazine, but they didn’t have it unfortunately, so we went on. We soon arrived at Aki!

Boulangérie Aki

It didn’t take us long to decide on what we want. My mom and I both love this bakery and had been looking forward all year to their onigiri and éclairs, so we both had a salmon onigiri and a yuzu éclair. My mom had coffee as an accompaniment and I chose Calpis, since I knew that would be delightfully fresh and it was quite warm.

Aki Goods
Lunch at bakery Aki.

We sat down outside and enjoyed our food. Ah, that yuzu éclair was so good… Just writing about it makes me long for it!
Meanwhile, the weather started changing and it rained a bit, although not for long. We sat down and just chilled for a while, because we really wanted to try and rest more during this trip since my mom had some trouble with her knees and I got easily tired in general. After we felt like we had rested enough, I made a quick stop at the toilet and then we headed back for Tuileries.
We passed a really nice store called ‘Panier des Sens’ that had a lot of very pretty-looking body care products and my mom fell in love with a particular rose-scented body lotion. She ended up not buying it, but I took a picture of it in case she ever changes her mind. ^^
We arrived back at the Louvre and Rue de Rivoli, where we briefly visited the sweets store La Cure Gourmande. I say brief, because we almost immediately ran out again because that store is always way too hot. We walked on and arrived at the cute little store where my mom had bought a beautiful necklace during our previous trip. I fell in love with a simple black hat there, with a bow at the back and a bit of a bonnet shape. I ended up buying it, it was just too perfect!
My mom and I returned to metro Tuileries and went back to our hotel.

Waiting for the metro.

When we arrived at our hotel we could of course check in and we were offered a room on the sixth floor. My mom went up with the tiny elevator first, then I followed her. When we arrived in our room, I didn’t feel too comfortable. The room was a bit dark, because there was only one small window. However, I didn’t have to say anything, because immediately my mom started sobbing! Turns out: while she was waiting for me outside the elevator, she had noticed the emergency ladder and its instructions. She completely freaked out about the idea of having to use it in case of a fire and with her knees she wouldn’t have been able at all. I immediately jumped up and said I was going to ask for a different room, so I ran downstairs. The super sweet hotel lady immediately offered us a room on the first floor and when we arrived there, it was so much better! The room felt more spacious and the window was big and gave lots of light. My mom felt so relieved! I was so happy I could help her out this time while she had done the same for me only one year before.
Also, the window looked straight upon the hotel we had stayed in two years prior! What a coincidence.

Hotel View
The lovely view from our hotel room.

My mom and I unpacked some things and rested some more, go us!
After a few hours, we went on our way again to have dinner. First we went to Gare de l’Est. We really wanted to visit Musée du Louvre the next day, but we wanted to buy a ticket in advance, so we wouldn’t have to stand in line. There is a FNAC store at Gare de l’Est, so we went there first.
We arrived at the station and browsed a few stores. We also took pictures in a photo booth!

Taking pictures in a photo booth is always so much fun!

We had actually planned to take pictures in photo booths every day, but this ended up the only day we actually managed to do so.
We headed for the FNAC store and purchases a Louvre ticket for my mom. In Paris a lot of museums and touristic attractions are free for young people, so I didn’t need to get a ticket (I verified with a shop member just to be sure, in French! I spoke a lot of French during this trip).
My mom and I exited the station and went to restaurant Yummy, the buffet restaurant Marina had once introduced me to. We only wanted to eat there if the air-conditioning was sufficient and luckily it was! Ah, this was such a delicious dinner. And they had even expanded their offer of desserts: they had macarons now!

Dessert Options
I just… really love desserts, okay?

We had a lovely meal of sushi and different kinds of Asian dishes. We were quite hungry, so everything tasted even more delicious!

Time to Eat
Bon appétit! Itadakimasu!

After our dinner we returned to Gare du Nord and to our hotel, where I already fell asleep around like 9 pm. It had been an intense and exciting day!

Purchases of the Day
Purchases of the day

Thank you for reading! ~☆~

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