It’s been half a year at home and DH and I needed to go somewhere! Fall trip together was to uncharted territory in Puglia and Basilicata with lots of driving, so this time chose two old friends requiring no driving: Paris and London. Late April in this part of Europe can be wet, but we lucked out on the weather, and missed the summer tourist crush in both places.
Delta has plenty of nonstops to Paris, but the 10PM, maybe-I’ll-sleep-flight, is an Airbus, with the dreaded three seats on both sides. (Trust me, nobody wants to be my third roommate on an overnight flight!) To get a two seater, we bumped up to Premium Plus, which Delta advertises as more room and more recline, but felt about the same as regular Comfort. (I know, first world problem; but we’re long limbed and spending the kids’ inheritance now.) I don’t think the footrests are worth the extra several hundred bucks, and it’s nothing even close to the First Class Suites I got an envious peak at while boarding. Overnight flights are all a little slice of hell, but whether it was skipping all the meals and movies, or the drugs and eye mask, I was grateful to wake up in Paris.
We arrived on a Monday, so bought Navajo Decouverte passes this time. Finding the counter in Terminal 2 took several tries, but the friendly agent trimmed and taped the little headshots I printed at home, and headed us toward the taxis in minutes. Glad I didn’t prebook a driver, because the baggage claim to taxi process took longer than I would have predicted.
We got our money’s worth on the passes during a week in Paris, but I do love the view from a taxi. Used the Bonjour RATP app for the metro and GoogleMaps for walking. T-Mobile is our service provider, so we can burn through data in Europe without keeping count. Paris busses remain elusive. Exactly once, in many visits, I spotted Bus 69 in a location where I could board it, and that was not on this trip.
Staying at my favorite Hotel de Lutece on Ile Saint Louis. Pretty, well-designed rooms, a tiny lift, and a helpful front desk. I enjoy having a room over the street here. It’s a little noisy sometimes, but it’s happy people noise, not jarring bar music and traffic noise. A good boulangerie across the street, a grocery next door, plenty of small restaurants on Rue Saint-Louis en l’Île, and Bertillion ice cream around the corner. We checked in about 4PM, walked as far as the nearest sidewalk cafe, on the corner facing the bridge leading to Notre Dame, and soaked up the sun and wine until time to cross the street to the Saint Regis cafe for food and wine. And these were our enjoyable accomplishments on arrival day.
[I’ve told the Lutece that I hope I’ll still be coming here when I’m really old, because everything I need is within a short walk. I’ll just skip the Metro, and they can load me on taxis.]