Travelogue Paris, France: Eiffel Tower

blog, Europe, Travel

A couple days ago Jas and I did the right touristy thing and saw the Eiffel Tower. It felt kind of strange to finally see something you only see in pictures. The whole area was packed with tour buses, group of people, families and travelers of all different backgrounds. I’m sure the French see it as more of an eye sore than anything.

Jas and I opted out of paying for an elevator or climbing the stairs to the second floor. It was too much money and too hot to want to do either.

Instead we walked around the park and closes to the canals. There was a lot more breathing room which was wonderful. Jas and I had our last lunch together at a cafe near our metro stop.

I went for the plate of the day (again), always opting for whatever they recommend, which was a large piece of seared salmon and a salad on top of the salmon with frites. It was incredible. Jas had a burger (again), but she said it was the best burger to-date in Paris.

I’m noticing how simple the French garish and flavour their dishes which makes it taste so fresh and simple (instead of dousing it in creamy sauces). Even salads are always a simple vinagrette.

Jas and her sister Jam didn’t enjoy Paris, actually they really didn’t like anything about the city. The had many reasons why they didn’t like Paris and after visiting them I understood why they couldn’t continue living there.

One of the main things that they couldn’t stand were the people. “The French are rude” is the cliche. And this cliche, was for the most part, unfortunately true. Is it that Canadians are high on the polite-rude scale, and so in contract the French seem rude?

I think part of the way they address people can come off as frank and blunt. If you’re going the wrong direction for example and ask a Parisian if you are in the right direction they will say no *end of story*. Where as a Canadian will most likely ask you where you’re try to go, or point you in the right direction. Again, there’s exceptions for everything and I think it’s best to avoid sweeping generalizations but the average French is lower on the polite-rude scale than the average Canadian.

I also think many of the issues they were having were more evident because they lived in Paris not just visited. It’s like how a friend told me that the perfect amount of time to spend in a place like Budapest is 2 days, any longer and the social issues become apparent.

When you live in a place, you have to adjust to the cultural norms of the city. I acted and dressed different in Tokyo then I did in Vancouver (modest dress vs. yoga pants and workout shirt). It wasn’t uncomfortable with either, actually I love both cities, it was just different.


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