So it’s the night before Spring Break, and everyone is busy packing. Luckily, I did my laundry yesterday and have all of my things together, so I’m all ready and now I’m just anxiously waiting for 10:30 AM tomorrow, when we leave for the airport. The flight is at 1:40 PM and includes a 5-hour layover in Shanghai’s Pu Dong airport.
It’s hard to focus on this journal with the anticipation for tomorrow, but I’m going to try my best.
March 25, 2012 – We woke up at 8 AM and luckily had no problems on the subway getting to the park. It seemed smaller than Disneyworld just from first impressions, but it still had that Disney feeling to it. The layout of the park is almost identical to Disney World, but it definitely felt a lot smaller. Snow White’s castle is definitely smaller – it couldn’t have been more than half the size of the original – and there was no Splash Mountain.
We started the day in Adventureland and Frontierland, hitting every ride and then grabbing a quick lunch at one of the takeout places. As expensive as it was, it was still in line with Paris prices, so in that regard it wasn’t bad. After lunch we walked to Discoveryland (a steampunk version of Tomorrowland) and then finished in Fantasyland. If it sounds like I described the day a bit quickly, that’s the way we went through the park unfortunately. Frank and Joanna set a scorching pace through the park, leaving barely any time to take pictures, let alone relax. I was thoroughly disappointed by that, as were Rebekah and Elena, but in the end it was still a lot of fun!
That night we had McDonald’s for dinner, since the supermarkets are closed on Sundays near us and every cafe or restaurant open was twice the cost. We may be eating a lot of junk here…
March 26, 2012 – There was really nothing happening today. Elena, Frank, Kristin, Caroline and Rebekah had their first Metaphysics class today (thank god I already did that in Queens!) and I had no classes to worry about. We went to the weekly meeting and then followed Mike, the director of Student Life, to the Arc d’Triomphe for a trip up to the top. My camera’s battery died after we got there, but I still got some pictures!
March 27, 2012 – First day of class! My professor seems rather boring, and we had to pay 5 euro for a big book of readings, as well as another 13 euro for a 10-pack of subway tickets (which is about a 5 euro discount, but I didn’t want to spend my money anyway). I can’t be spending much money, I need to save it for Tokyo! The rest of the day was calm and easy, though, and I went to sleep early in preparation for my first class excursion.
March 28, 2012 – Second day of class. Woke up too late to go get lunch, so I went to class with a 60 cent cup of coffee. Again it was boring, but at least I was able to participate more than most of the other students. Luckily, my past art classes and my outside experience doing digital art makes the discussion of different pieces of art a breeze.
March 29, 2012 – I woke up at 1:30 and walked over to Carrefour – literally two doors down from the school – and bought a microwaveable sandwich for lunch. This is apparently a common occurrence too, especially in the expensive parts of Paris. There’s a wide variety of microwaveable foods, from burgers and hot dogs to pasta, pizza, appetizer foods, and sandwiches like the one I got.
For class we all met at the Pont Marie subway station, walking around the neighborhood to get a good look at Gothic architecture before going to the important stop – the Notre Dame. I have to reiterate just how boring my professor is, since she even managed to make this beautiful church boring! I’ll see if I have the time to go back and get better pictures.
March 30, 2012 – We woke up at 8 today and made it downstairs in time for the American-style breakfast being served. It was refreshing to sit down with some pancakes, eggs and sausage and maple syrup on top, and got us all ready for our trip to the Palace of Versailles. It was a school-sponsored trip and took us about an hour to get there, and once we did Mike told us to go nuts and come back to campus whenever we wanted.
Elena, Rebekah and I lagged behind our usual group, who seemed content to just rush through the palace. We wanted to take in all of the different pieces of art, and it ended up taking almost 90 minutes for us to get through the whole place. And once we did, it was time to visit the gardens! The entire property is mind-numbingly big, and just when you think you’ve made it to the edge of the gardens, you realize there’s still a path stretching out over the horizon. We didn’t go too far, only enough to get baked potatoes for lunch and sit by the pond, where we were able to feed the swans with our leftovers.
Again my camera died on me, but not until we were on our way out! We got back and made a dinner out of cold cuts from Carrefour, then went to sleep. Thank god we didn’t have anything to do Saturday.
March 31, 2012 – Today was a day for relaxing. Elena, Rebekah and I decided to stop by the Louvre again, grab a quick lunch at McDonald’s and then sit inside drawing the sculptures and architecture. I’m very rusty with pencil and paper, but the girls were really into it. After we left the Louvre we went to a gluten free bakery that Elena had read up about, and bought some stuff there. I have to admit, a lot of the time I think gluten-free pastries taste better than their glutenous counterparts. We’ll definitely be back here.
April 1, 2012 – April Fool’s Day was boring, and Frank and I spent most of the day in our dorm room, playing League of Legends. We grabbed McDonald’s for lunch and an extra burger each for dinner – neither one of us wanted to spent 15 euro for a single entree at any other restaurant.
April 2, 2012 – Another Monday, another day spent sleeping past lunchtime! It was another lazy day around the dorm, but I went to Carrefour to break one of my 10 euro bills to have enough coins to do laundry. I really wish I didn’t have to use all my cash like this…
April 3, 2012 – After another boring art class today, I packed my suitcase with my dirty laundry and brought it downstairs to the washers and driers – and spent three hours doing 2 loads of laundry, which wasn’t even enough to get it all done! It cost 8 euro in total, but at least the majority of my clothes are clean and I don’t have to worry about it again until probably the week before we come home.
April 4, 2012 – All day, all anyone was talking about was spring break. I can’t believe it’s already here… I spent an hour packing and once I finished, kicked back to write this journal and play some video games. It’s going to be a long day tomorrow!