FRANCE BY JIM - 1993
THURSDAY. APRIL 22ND
Arrived in Paris at 3:00 p.m., my garment bag had broken a zipper. My clothes were
hanging out and I thought Pete was going to die laughing when he saw it. Smart
ass. We got that fixed and then jumped on route with the air mini-van for the trip
to Oleans which is 2 hours by car. Got to the hotel about 6 p.m. We took off
on foot to see the town of 1,000,000 people. I think we saw the bridge where Joan of Arc
rode across. Pete said it was "Lady Godivia" (sick boy). We found a
place to eat just like McDonalds and thought we had died and went to heaven, really a neat
FRIDAY. APRIL 23RD
Up at 8 a.m., Engineering Manager from the plant picked us up and spent 6 hours in the
plant. He took us to the train station and we just made it on the train. I
fell asleep. The trip to Paris was a very smooth ride. We both liked the train
very much. We went from the train to the subway station for the ride to the
hotel. Subway ticket was $1.50 for any distance (taxi would have cost us $50.00 one
way). My first time on a subway and I like it. Pretty clean, very efficient. Arrived
at the hotel around 3 p.m. and dumped off the luggage and headed for the street.
Hotel is right on main street, super location. I ordered a beer at a cafe on the
street. We got two 30 oz. mugs of beer, no problem, great weather 75 sunny
(this must be heaven). We walked about 8 to 10 miles that night looking at things,
lots of people but didn't seem to bother us. You can't do justice to Paris, a
fabulous city, a million things to lock at. I think I moved a little fast for Pete,
he called me Chevy Chase (from vacation when he went to Grand Canyon). Went to bed
about 11 p.m., super room, its got all the goodies. We also ate supper at McDonalds
(cheeseburger, fries and coke, great!
SATURDAY APRIL 24TH
Up at 8 a.m. heading uptown to Eiffel Tower. Took subway all day, great way to
travel, very fast, surprising how fast you get used to it. Great view from tower, I
don't think Jeanette would go up a lot of frightened people, (height). Next we went
to the Louvre, if not the biggest, one of the biggest museums in the world. We saw
the Mona Lisa by Leonardo de Vinci and many, many other masterpieces. We spent 4 or
5 hours in there. Guess where we went for dinner? McDonalds again, great
stuff. We checked out some other points of interest and headed back to the room for
more clothes because it was raining outside. Took off again, heading for Church of
Notre Dame, by and far the biggest church I have every seen. Thousands of people
inside, a huge organ. I found Cecil lighting a candle, he said his mother would like
it but I think he was just praying Bob Hitt won't kick our asses for spending all of this
money (rooms are $200 a night and the girls are extra) that's a joke, wifes.
SUNDAY. APRIL 25TH
I woke up at 4 a.m. and can't sleep, too hot, so I started writing down notes of the
trip. 8 a.m. Pete and I took off again looking at things. The Paris Marathon
is today and it starts just down the street from our hotel. One of the largest races in
the world, thousands of runners. It was neat watching the start. We then went
up on top of the Arch de Thrumpe, great view of Paris. Time to get our things and
board a bus to Charles DeGaulle airport, one of the largest in the world. On the way
we saw a Concord come in for a landing. This business class is hard to take, we went
to a special lounge (all drinks free) to wait for the flight. Three course meal and
all you can drink, they treat you like kings. Just after take off we went over
Normandy Beach (D Day), my sidekick is snoring so loud it is hard to write. He'll wake up
and say he didn't fall asleep, "bull shit". I felt sorry for his wife and
I don't know how she can sleep with all that noise. The plane engines aren't that
Germany people move too slow for Pete and I. I'd have a heart attack waiting for
things to happen. It is also much more expensive than the U.S.A., very crowded and
no extras. I did feel safe walking around. Very proud people, the countryside
was beautiful. Peter, Manfred and Mr. Heinke treated us great. The Rhein river
is so polluted, you can't fish in it. Every place serves beer and wine.
Italy, very old everything, very little restored. Most buildings in need of
repair. The people and countryside seemed very dirty. Lost of history here but
wouldn't go back, with or without "Bryden" there. He did show us a lot in
a short period of time, I thanked him for that and that's all. The country seems to
be 20 to 30 years behind us.
Paris, a super place to visit and very easy to get around. Could spend a month there
and not see it all. A lot of fun just watching the people. Very clean, safe and very
I ate wiener schnitzel one night in Germany, very good, I thought of Ron Stendal.
Visited Russian temple in Germany, very impressive. Germany is restoring a lot of old
Peter's wife said that after 2 days with us she was dreaming in English.
Pete ran into a short post the first day in Germany, his voice was a little higher after
that (lost his manhood).
Pete said he had 5 years of French in school, I'd like to see the grade he got (he said
they talked too fast for him).
In Paris I tipped a bellhop 2 franks which is equal to 40 cents. Bigelow would have
been proud. I thought it was worth more.
I wrote most of this on the plane, very bumpy.