a peek inside the fishbowl

17 Jul, 2019

Two hours in Paris, part three

Posted by andrea tomkins in: travel talk

(Click for part one and two.)

After our pit stop, we wandered along the Seine and around the shops and restaurants and charming alleyways of Paris.

La Seine

Alleyways of Paris

Alleyways is Paris

Notre Dame under construction, July 2019

After a couple of hours we were hot, tired, and overwhelmed so we decided to call it a day. We were also worried. If the RER train took us overly long to get here, could there be similar delays on the route back? We assured ourselves that there couldn’t possibly be another issue with unattended baggage. It’ll be fine, right? Er, wrong.

We boarded the train (once again my daughter’s ticket didn’t work and a random citizen had to help us out) and we were three or four stations away from the airport when the train stopped (again!) and a message came over the loudspeaker. Of course, we didn’t understand what was being said, so we ignored it. We continued to stare out the window and sweat to death in our seats in a state of anxiety. We didn’t notice that everyone else had gotten off the train and we were the only ones left sitting there, along with one other young fellow who was equally oblivious and non-French speaking. Thankfully, a fellow passenger who’d already left the train (!) backtracked, stuck his head in the door, and explained, in broken English, that if we wanted to get to the airport we had to get on another train. I still don’t know why, because it wasn’t the end of the line. Sigh.

We eventually made it back to the airport. The youngest was feeling ill at this point and we asked to bypass one of the check-in lines, which they let us do, thankfully. She ended up throwing up in a garbage bin en route to our waiting area. (According to her, she had made a tactical error mixing melatonin with a glass of wine on the flight but I’m certain the heat and exhaustion didn’t help matters.) Thankfully she felt better after, er, the purge. I was worried whether she’d be ok for our 12-hour flight to Bangkok and the flight to Phuket after that. But that was about it for our travel troubles.

We found our gate and admired the deluxe waiting areas, snacks, and window shopping. Was our outing worth all the trouble? I am unsure, but I do know that if we hadn’t made the effort to try to see Paris during our layover we would have been disappointed in ourselves. In hindsight, I can’t say I regret our decision but I do know it would have been a pleasure to kill eight hours in that gorgeous airport. I also know that I would really like to return to Paris some day and I will need a lot more time to absorb it fully. Maybe in the spring or the fall, when the weather is cooler and our stomachs aren’t in knots about late trains and connecting flights.

1 Response to "Two hours in Paris, part three"

1 | Misty

July 29th, 2019 at 3:00 pm


Travel is so stressful! I agree, you need time in Paris :) It’s a wonderful city to wander/explore, but at least now you can say you’ve been to Paris!!

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My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our dog Piper who is kind of a big deal on Instagram. We also have two human daughters: Emma (20) and Sarah (18). During the day I work as a writer at The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999. The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, family travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa for families. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

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