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Paris, France

The journey by Eurostar to Paris was bliss - gliding through the flat vernal fields of northern France. The weather that day in Paris itself was fantastic, so I took the Metro to Chatelet and endeavored to walk down the river to the next point of my journey: Paris Bercy Station.

I've never been overly keen on Paris, but this day was exceptional. The heat was the kind you can only take in small doses, and so, after about 4 hours of mostly walking around with my backpack on, I was expiring; I hurried on to the station. This was, in many respects, a bad move. Bercy Station has all the charm of a Soviet prison, and about as much entertainment. Luckily I had my reader (which I would advise for any traveller in my situation), and so I managed to get a lot of reading done.

Eventually we were allowed to board the train. I had anticipated that most of those travelling on a sleeper train out of the holiday season would be young people backpacking like myself. There were certainly some, but many were single business people, or groups of older friends. Unfortunately in my carriage there was what seemed like a whole primary school. After several hours of almost unbearable shrieking, laughing and chattering, several members of the public volunteered to stand outside the doors of their couchettes to keep them quiet and this seemed to work. Despite a snorer (there's always one!) next to me, I managed to get to sleep, helped no doubt by the gentle rocking of the train as we passed through the Alps.

permalink written by  BenWH on April 1, 2009 from Paris, France
from the travel blog: Gap Year Odyssey
tagged France

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