Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Who's This Andre Gill, Anyway?

Ah yes. Back to my EuroStory. From October. I'm that far behind.

When we stepped off the train in Paris, I immediately fell in love. I was sort of geared up for disappointment. After all, how many things in life can possibly live up to my high expectations?

Well, Paris was exactly what I thought it would be: a gorgeous city full of passionate artists, intimate bistros and cheese. Lots of cheese.

Upon arrival, I checked into my impossibly tiny hostel, the Hotel Andre Gill. Yeah, they called it a Hotel, but it was a hostel. In fact, it was basically what you'd get if somebody made a French cartoon about a hostel, complete with a big spirally staircase, Japanese tourists, and the management baking croissants in the kitchen. It was sort of like living in The Triplets of Belleville, only with much less awesomeness and much more body odor.

Okay, not exactly the Ritz, but Disney was not paying for this room. I was. And I am not a person of wealth.

Proudly Displaying Our Two-Star Rating

After checking in, I crammed myself and my bags into the smallest elevator in Europe.

I attempted to turn around while in the elevator, but my backpack and the tiny lift prevented any of that nonsense. This was the kind of elevator one could only "back out" of.

Oh also, my room was on the 6th floor, and the elevator only went to the 5th. Why?

One should not ask questions at the Hotel Andre Gill. If one does, that question may lead to other questions. Like perhaps:
  • Why is my bed made for a little person?
  • Why is there only a closet and a sink in my room, and no toilet?
  • Why is the toilet on the 6th floor out-of-order, forcing me to walk down the stairs, in the dark, in the middle of the night, in my boxer shorts?
  • Which leads to, why is there no light in the hallway?
  • Why, when I finally do reach the 5th floor toilet, is the light broken, forcing me to try and aim properly in the dark?
  • Why, when I want to (heaven forbid) actually shower, do I have to walk to the 5th floor, take the elevator to the 1st floor, and then wait in line for the only shower in the entire building?
So... One should not ask questions at the Hotel Andre Gill.

Apparently, Andre Gill was a famous caricaturist. Just take a moment to let that sink in.

But none of that mattered anyway, because I was in Paris (!), and I certainly planned on spending as little time as possible in my Hotel/hostel.

So out I went. First, to the Eiffel Tower:

Then, to gorge on EuroSweets:

I had quite an adventurous day out, riding the trains, meeting Parisians, speaking pigeon-French.

The following day, I met up with Jamie, Jaco and Candice for a little museum hopping. First, the Rodan museum, for a little sculpture 101.

Staring Contest

The Thinker(s)

Consoling the Inconsolable

Okay, that last one wasn't in the Rodan museum. Because in Paris, there's just random sculpture on the streets. It's like a big art explosion. Otherwise known as "Mike Schmid's New Favorite Place."

At the end of that day, Jamie and I took a little tour of Monmarte: him because he's all cultured n' stuff, and me because I like Amelie.

Sacre Coeur Basillica was a sight to behold: partially because it is a marvel of architechture, and partially because the French insisted on partying hard in front of said marvel, creating a depressing and ironic sight:

Oh, Paris. Even your flaws are strangely artful.

The next day, we checked out Notre Dame, The Musee D'Orsay, The Latin Quarter and...just everything awesome. Lots of walking, lots of bread & dairy, and great...great escargot.

The final day, we went to Versailles. (Next entry).

Digg this

1 comment:

  1. I need to check out your blog more often! It's always fun reading about your adventures. I figured I'd comment on the comment-less one. We already all know how cute little kids are (he is adorable!). That picture of the Sacre Coeur Basillica is indeed strangely artful!