Paris Paris, Oh How I Love Thee…. or NOT!

Today was an interesting day.  A nice little trip to Ikea turned into a nightmare.  We did some shopping there that took about three hours.  That is pretty good for Ikea, right?  We made our way back home by catching the bus to the RER (train) station.  It is always fun when the train is there waiting for you!  So we ran to get on really quick!  PHEW!  We made it! 

Yeah, about 45 minutes later, we are still sitting there on the same metro.  This is the ONLY way any of us knew how to get home and we didn’t understand what the train guy was saying over the loud speaker, so we just stayed on the train along with the rest of the Frenchies.  Finally we are moving!!!!  One stop.  We wait about another 15 minutes before the announcer says something else in French and half the train gets up to leave.  We decided to join them.  We hopped on some bus, in which Kendall barely made it on.  Paris is all about survival of the fittest.  It doesn’t matter.  Young or old, you better fight for that last place on the bus!  Kendall was the last one on the bus, so each time the doors would open, she had to balance herself not to fall out!  She didn’t know this, but I was laughing at her each time!  It was quite a sight!  During this bus ride a rather large woman got on and apparently stepped on Kendall’s foot.  Kendall decided to yell, "WAIT!" to the lady, and then say, "JUST ONE MINUTE," while pointing her finger.  It was quite funny.  If you have ever been to France, you know people are SILENT on public transportation.  A couple French guys behind me were saying how that is "classic Americans".  Oh yeah.  It made me mad.  I wanted to say something mean back to them about French being mean people, but thank goodness I don’t know how to say it.  I wanted to turn around and say, "Je comprends!"  (I understand!!).   

The bus dropped us off somewhere I have never been before, where there were no buses to catch.  We got a taxi.   He told us it was going to cost us about fifty euros!  We told him to just take us to the closest metro stop that will take us into the city.  He did.  He was nice, but it still cost twenty euros!  We got on our metro, made one change to another metro, and made it home.  VOILA!  Over three hours it took us!   Why did it take this long?  Why wasn’t the train working?  We found out that some of the protesting was taking place on the train tracks.  We all joked about how the next Survivor television show should be shot in Paris.  Seriously!  It is hard work living here sometimes!  We had to fight to get on a packed bus, try to understand in another language why the train wasn’t working, deal with body odor of people all around us, people breathing and coughing in our faces, getting stepped on, guarding our purses, trying to stay quiet like the French, touching dirty poles just so you don’t fall over, etc etc etc!  Oh the joys of living in a city!  I do love it though!  But I can definitely see how the city can harden you to other people around you.  You stop noticing that they are people too.  I stop noticing they are maybe stressed, having a bad day, and I start noticing the B.O. and how they coughed in my face, or keep hitting me with the bag that they are holding.  It is interesting finding the balance between standing up for myself and giving grace to the stinky man next to me.  I just wish I could pass out deodorant sometimes.


  1. Mom on April 6, 2006 at 6:12 pm

    Now dear daughter, imagine all that with a delightful little child in your arms! Yea! We can finally write about little french babykins! Love you and your crazy stories SO much!

  2. relevantgirl on April 6, 2006 at 11:32 pm

    Jen of all Jens, THIS is precisely why you need to be an author! You made me laugh, and you told a great story, complete with suspense!

    You go, writer girl!

  3. Bob on April 7, 2006 at 3:30 am

    But how about those Sweedish meatballs?

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