I’m definitely more of an anglophile, so I don’t have a whole lot planned to do in France for this leg of the Euro tour. Franky, (*snicker* Frankly – get it? Franc… nevermind…) I’ve heard a lot of negative stereotypes about the French. That, being the rudeness towards and dislike of [ignorant] Americans, and general distate of English speakers. Not to mention their strict, martinet sense of etiquette. While I tend not to discriminate others as I have had the awful experience of being discriminated against, the pragmatic side of me has set down a low expectation; one of caution, so that if France exceeds the expectations, I can be pleasantly surprised and report here on the misconceptions, if any, of said stereotypes.
All in all, I promise to enter their borders with an open mind.
Despite my (admittedly) conservative attitude towards what to expect, here are the few things I wish to do in the City of Love:What: Eiffel Tower Where: Champ de Mars, Paris, France Why: For years since its construction by Engineer Gustave Eiffel, this has been one of the most prominent symbols of France. Movies often feature the tower to establish the fact that it is taking place within the country. You simply can’t go to France and not take a picture near the famous tower. Also, I can’t wait to eat at one of the restaurants on the lower levels of the elegantly tall, La Tour Eiffel. That would be quite an experience! What: Arc de Triomphe Where: Place Charles de Gaulle, Paris Why: This Iconic French Monument is a remembrance/tomb for those who died in the French Revolutionary War as well as the Napoleonic Wars. One thing I can appreciate from the French is the trait of not bowing down (anymore) to any King or Monarch. Liberté, égalité, fraternité for all! What: Louvre Museum Where: Palais Royal, Paris Why: It is perhaps the world’s largest and most visited museum. Oh come on! Don’t you want to see the Mona Lisa with your own eyes!? I sure do! Even waaaaay before Dan Brown (Damn you! >.< ) made the museum a highlight of his novel, I sat in my classroom dreaming of the day I could see the famous paintings (printed in black and white on my workbook) in full color with my own wide-eyed amazement. I know Leo da Vinci won’t let me down! 🙂 Must-see exhibits are The Mona Lisa, Venus de Milo, The Winged Victory and Madonna of the Rocks. French Souvenirs of Choice: For the Monsieur: Languiole Pocket Knife. It’s small enough and comes for different functions, you could even get one that looks like a cheese knife. Might as well buy some cheese. France should be the best place to shop for cheese, considering they have hundreds of different varieties… For the Madame or Mademoiselle: France being a leader in the world of fashion, I figure it would be smart and trendy to stick with this category for gifts. However, I’m down to two choices and can’t seem to decide what to get the ladies in my life. Perhaps you can help a guy out? Should I be getting a Parisian Pocket Mirror or a French Shawl? I will probably end up getting both, but let me know which would YOU prefer to receive? Merci!