Paris and Geneva

Last Friday was my birthday, and to celebrate, Greg and I flew out of Southampton and into Paris, France! We met up with our friends, Chris and Megan, and spent the weekend exploring Paris and then Geneva with them. Not a bad way to spend a birthday!

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Birthday in Paris

The flight from Southampton to Paris is only 55 minutes! That’s about as long as it takes to fly from Minneapolis to Chicago. It still blows my mind how close everything is over here. We landed in Paris around 1pm, took a train to our cosy Airbnb, and then met up with Chris and Megan to eat cheese and drink wine under the heat lamps of an outdoor cafe. Although I didn’t order any cheese, a fact I’m still regretting.

After our late lunch, we set out to explore the city. We walked around and under the Eiffel tower, crossed the river and saw the Louvre, checked out the love lock bridge, and admired the gargoyles on Notre Dame. Since we did all of our sightseeing after the sun had gone down, and it was a bit chilly, there really weren’t many other tourists around. It was pretty nice! We ended the night with more wine and cheese at another outdoor cafe.

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Louvre at night

Saturday morning, we got some croissants and then headed to the train station to catch the high speed train to Geneva. The 3 hour ride took us through the Alps and the views were breathtaking. After checking into our Airbnb and napping for a bit, we got dinner and then headed back into France to see L’Imperatrice a French band Greg likes. The venue, Chateaux Rouge, was intimate, and the concert was great!

Sunday, we hopped onto a boat and took a lunch cruise around Lake Geneva. I highly recommend this if you’re heading to Geneva! The lake is surrounded by mountains so the view from everywhere on the boat is impressive, and the food served was tasty. The boat stops at a couple different docks along the cruise, and at the final dock, Saint Nicholas and his helpers, who were in black face, joined us on board. The tradition is ridiculously racist, but that didn’t stop the massive crowd of children from cramming onto the dock of the next stop and cheering wildly for him. It was interesting to see.

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View from our boat cruise on Lake Geneva

This week, Chris and Megan are meeting us here in Southampton, and then we’re all heading to Amsterdam for another long weekend get away!

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