Monday, October 20, 2008

The Seventh Inning Stretch

We’ve made it through Asia (Southeast and Original flavor), India (spicy Asia), and most of mainland Europe. We left Paris yesterday morning, arriving in Ireland for our final 12 day trek through the United Kingdom. The end is near.

People like to talk about how expensive Europe is. Before leaving on this trip the most common phrase I heard was, “oh, you’re spending 6 weeks in Europe? Do you know how expensive that is?” Even people that I’m pretty sure have never been to Europe seem to know how much it costs. It’s like there was a class everyone took in college about the fiscal demands of European travel. I must have skipped that one.

Europe isn’t expensive. Paris is expensive. If Europe is a 3-series BMW, Paris is a Leer Jet. Seriously.

On our arrival, I bought my first cup of coffee costing north of 5 euros (about $7.50). Holy crap. And it didn’t even come with a prize or anything.

Our first day in Paris (and Sarah’s last day) began rainy and cold, but later turned out sunny…and still cold. We hit all the major Paris postcard locations….the Arc de Triumph, Champs De Elyssee, Notre Dame, some whole in the wall bookshop (that was all in English!), and ended the day on the Eiffel Tower at sunset. We also went to the Musee D’Orsay in the afternoon; an impressionism museum with a lot of Monet’s, Van Gogh’s, Renoir’s, etc. It was pretty impressive. They had a cool display of Picasso paintings interpreting a famous Manet.

Okay enough art. Tara arrived the first night and Sarah left the next morning. We spent the next two days exploring the rest of Paris. We spent a morning in the Louve (with Tara’s art history tour), an afternoon in a famous graveyard, we saw another cathedral (that I can’t pronounce), and found some good food for less than the rest of Paris.

Getting out of Paris was a bit tougher than getting in. After a two hour trip from the hotel to the airport at 6am, we took a discount airline into Dublin. Probably the roughest flight we’ve taken yet. Before landing I felt like I was on a ride at Carrowinds. I’ve never had to brace myself with the armrests until yesterday. A guy my age began losing his breakfast all over the floor two seats in front of me (apparently RyanAir doesn’t shell out the extra 10 cents for throw up bags). Our landing felt like sledding over a rockslide. It was awesome. Landing planes must be unusual for RyanAir because as soon as we stopped everyone began clapping. Interesting. Glad I didn’t get to see what they do when the plane doesn’t land.

Well now we are in Dublin, Ireland and I freakin love it. It’s cold and windy, but we are going to visit the Guinness brewery and eat some good food (that doesn’t cost my soul or first born). Dublin reminds me of Rochester…if Rochester had sweet Irish accents. We went to our first true Irish pub last night. Oh, and here’s a fun fact. Everyone in Europe seems to really love the Kid Rock song that rips off Sweet Home Alabama and Werewolves of London. Besides Oasis, it was the only song sung at the top of every ones lungs at about 2 am in the bar. WTF…Kid Rock? I guess I have yet to get a handle on the European taste in pop music.

We fly back on November 1st. 12 more days until we successfully make it around the world. Now, its time to get off the internet and enjoy Ireland, England, and Scotland. Cheers.

One last thing. For the last few months we have been honing our skills at the ‘Action Shot.’ I think we have finally perfected the technique. I’d like to call this series “Face Kick: Paris


Face Kick: Under the Eiffel Tower

Face Kick: Louve

Arc de Face Kick

Face Kick: At Night


Jessica said...

I seriously read your paragraph about Ryanair aloud to my roommate! Sounds like a memorable trip! Enjoy the last 12 days

Mom said...

Looks more like Raphael in Paris...I especially like the look on that guys face in the background, clearly he never watched Ninja Turtles... Enjoy your last few days in Europe, I'm stocking up the pantry for your return home. Be safe. See you soon!

Alice Beasley said...

Bet receiving this comment will really surprise you. I am very proud of you both and envious of the great time you are having. Hope you have remembered a few facts from our world history class as you have had this fantastic experience. Nothing like seeing the real thing.
Enjoy the rest of your trip and do not forget to vote when you get home!