看法國電影太多，到巴黎就一定要去街頭咖啡店，裝摸作樣的喝杯咖啡抽根菸。我們在 Saint-Germain 大街隨便找一間有陽光照到的街頭咖啡店坐下，對不抽菸的人來說，在這種咖啡店喝咖啡實是受罪。座位超窄，大家都手肘撞手肘的面向大街而坐，吞雲吐霧地抽菸，在二手和一手菸之間，我選擇自己點一根。
咖啡索價 6.5 歐元一杯，看著和煦巴黎街頭美景的份上，笑著點了兩杯。我們期待可能是世界上最好喝的咖啡（至少是旅程中最貴的一杯），但上枱的是咖啡杯卻是家用那種毫無設計的馬克杯，跟星巴克的一樣，大而無美感。咖啡味道淡如水，比自家煮的還要差大段距離。失望嗎？那亦不然，因為整個過程是為了「坐在巴黎街頭咖啡店喝咖啡」而做，我們確實做了，但肯定不會再做。
另一個巴黎 to-do list 上的是在鐵塔前野餐。我們當天沒有準備的出門，臨近午餐時間，看到天氣好便馬上去超市買沙律、芝士、三文治、零食及紅酒，跑到鐵塔前的草地就地野餐。草地上人多，但各自有空間，球技好還有位置可以三五知己踢幾腳。小販不停走來販賣巴黎模型紀念品，亦有人用膠袋載著酒精、食品，在四周非法兜售，遇上騎著單車的警察便掉下膠袋，雞飛狗走。十多分鐘後回來拾起膠袋，繼續做生意。
Springtime in Paris／Kimberlogic
So many people have a love for Paris whether they have been there or not. Paris is a place that has been romanticized in paintings, writings and films for so long now that it is very well known to the average person. So many great famous artists spent time in Paris to get their inspiration that it makes you wonder, what is so magical about this city?
Paris is also a place that is hated by many. Parisians have a stereotype to be rude to foreigners and the city is notorious for sky-high prices. Personally, I never had a dream to visit Paris, but I didn’t try to avoid it either. So, when we arrived in Paris, I didn’t have any expectations or negative thoughts.
Many people who have the romanticized version of Paris in their head are sometimes disappointed when they visit. This is due to the fact that there is so much to see and do here and some people try to do everything in the short amount of time they have. From my experience, to fully enjoy Paris, don’t try to do too much in one day.
We only had a short amount of time in Paris, so we decided to choose three landmarks to visit one day and the next day we dedicated to the Louvre Museum. From where we were staying, we were able to walk one direction to see Notre Dame Cathedral, the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe. Since we were taking our time to get from one destination to the next, we ended up seeing so much more of the city than just landmarks. Wandering the small streets of Paris and stopping for a coffee at a sidewalk cafe was enough to spark my interest in this city. Although the average coffee is 5 Euros, the setting and people watching made for a great atmosphere.
The nicest part of the day was lunch. We bought some food and drinks and found a spot on the lush, green grass in front of the Eiffel Tower. The majority of our days have been filled with rain since arriving in Europe, but this day the sun was shinning bright and the air was warm, it truly felt like the perfect Spring day.
Throughout our days in Paris, we also had many encounters with the locals. I can understand why some people think Parisians are rude to foreigners. Some of the people we met and interacted with were busy, and since we do not speak French, they had to slow down for us. But, smiling and thanking people goes a long way anywhere in the world. You can’t take things too personally when you travel and you also have to stay in a good mood. If you keep trying to communicate with a smile and appreciation, most people will come around.
When it was time to leave Paris, I wasn’t ready. There is something magical about this city, I felt it, but I wasn’t there long enough to discover exactly what it is. Although you have to save up enough money to have a good time here, it is worth it and I will definitely be back.