I have traveled to some beautiful places. I've seen sights that have taken my breath away. I've hiked mountains and crossed waters that have caused me to say "I've never seen something so beautiful." But Paris. Paris takes the cake when it comes to cities I've seen. From the moment my friend Stepha and I stepped off the train, my camera was out and it never saw the inside of its pack again. When leaving for Paris I was completely stressed. I even said to Stepha "I just have to get through this trip so I can get home and get work done, pay taxes, etc etc etc etc...." Then Paris happened. It was like the city beckoned us to stop. And so we did. We stopped our schedules and our constant connection with the ever-looming emails. For these days, we stopped trying to figure out whats next in life, therefore, we stopped stressing. We also stopped for what was present in front of us. You should ask Stepha how many times I stopped us mid walk, mid sentence, mid thought to take in the beauty. One moment it was an olive tree in a courtyard, the next, a potted plant cascading down a window. We stopped at a bakery for a warm baguette just because it smelled good. We drank the most expensive cappuccinos because, 'why not.' We stopped to take in the Eiffel tower peaking through alley ways as we got closer. And when we arrived, we were speechless.
In the 3 days we stayed in Paris, we trotted around that city for miles. We never took public transportation because we didn't want to miss anything. There are so many hidden gems around the city and we were glad for every step our sore feet took and every hour we didn't sleep. And this is what made it worth it: Stayed in the 17th Arrondissement | Parc Monceau | Ard de Triomphe | Champs-Elysees | Trocadera | Eiffel Tower | Champ de Mars | Place de Concorde | Tuileries | Louvre | Port du Alexander | St. Germain | Laduree (macaroons) | Montmarte | Walked neighborhoods for hours | Canal St. Martin | Bastille | Place de Vosges | L'le St. Louis | Notre Dame |Eiffel Tower at Midnight | Rode bikes | Breakfast at Buvette