I’ve been MIA the past week – my apologies! My itinerary over here was hectic (Atlanta-Toronto-Reykjavik-Paris), but I enjoyed having a layover in Iceland, a country I never would have had a chance to visit otherwise. I enjoyed listening to music by Icelandic artists on the plane, along with learning facts about Iceland (apparently the majority of the population believes in elves!). My brother has always wanted to visit Iceland, so I made sure to take lots of pictures to send to him. The worst part of such a long travel day is that I have trouble sleeping on planes, so I am still getting over the jet lag a week later.
I’m so lucky that my friend Kristi was able to meet me at the airport and help with my luggage. Ever the rule-breaker, both of my suitcases weighed in at 49 pounds, not to mention my clarinets and carry-on bag. I should get an award for most creative use of spatial organization, because every inch was stuffed with last-minute items. After Kristi and I rode the RER and dropped off my luggage at my place (Kristi had Hulk-level strength to carry those suitcases up and down stairs), we went to St. Germain, where we ate delicious crepes and walked around the Luxembourg Gardens. I still don’t know how I was able to stand I was so tired, and I slept until 1pm the next day (I think the latest I’ve ever slept is 10am, when I’ve been really sick).
I won’t bore you with mundane details of every day, but suffice it to say I’ve been busy getting settled in – opening a bank account, getting my transportation pass, exploring my arrondissement, practicing, unpacking – all while making time to feast on a balanced diet of baguettes, cheese, and chocolate.
Today was probably my favorite day yet, as I decided to take the day off to practice and explore, and explore I did. I walked over five miles, visiting all that caught my fancy. After a late lunch at Boulangerie et Patisserie Paul at Denfert Rochereau, I toured the Montparnasse Cemetery, where I found Saint-Saens’ and d’Indy’s graves. After that, I walked down the market street Rue Daguerre, where I was tempted by even more delicious food (I resisted…..for now….). Finally, I sat in on part of a church service at Saint-Pierre-de-Montrouge, where I was amazed by the organ playing.
And here I am, having a great time reliving my adventures of this first week, and anticipating the fun that is still yet to come.
I’m making a Paris bucket list for my time here, so please leave any comments for what I should add (food, museums, sights, gardens, architecture, churches, anything else!) Also, my Instagram (@clarinetistinparis) will have daily pictures of my adventures, so please follow me :)
P.S. Excuse the lack of accents and correct French symbols for some names and locations – it’s a lot easier to use the proper symbols on my iPhone’s French keyboard, and I’m typing this on my laptop.