Day 1: Paris – as much as I can fit in: Lynn and I and her friend from Chicago, Dee, started early with Saint Chapelle and Notre Dame, then walked along the Seine to Isle St. Louis for Berthillon ice cream and a bit of shopping and relaxation. On the spur of the moment, we all decided to give our feet a break and bought a day pass for the Batobus, a kind of bus-boat on the river. It was the best decision of the day and we used the pass for the last ride of the evening to see the Eiffel lit up along the river. All in all, I had a fabulous time in Paris with my good friend. We ended the evening at a wonderful Parisian café for a late night crepe dinner; a really nice end to my trip. Early departure from Paris to Dublin and on to Seattle. Air France bus from Montparnasse at 6:20 a.m. to CDG. I can't say enough good things about staying in hostels. Being a solo traveler most of the time, it is nice to connect with people from all over the world and it is easier to do that while staying in a hostel. It takes a certain easy going person to do so and every hostel is different. Some, like the one in Rome, come with bathrooms down the hall, and some, like the one in Sorrento, come with the bathroom in your dorm room. I loved meeting people from all over the world: Bellingham, WA, Portland, OR, Toronto, Canada, San Paulo, Brazil, Malayasia, Oxford, and Wales. On a side note, the Italian children are so cute and it is easily seen that the Italians really do place importance on family life. Children here are indulged constantly. Mothers and fathers are outwardly affectionate with their bambini. I also enjoy watching them talk; always with the hands flying everywhere. I noticed an Italian woman on the train to Pompei talking on her cell phone and still using her hands to express herself. It was funny, but cute.