Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Gare du Nord, as never seen before

Amazingly enough, given the number of times I have used this station, I have never seen it like this, althouigh I can assuem that it has looked exactly like this for many years. Funny how one can continue to be surprised.

I am staying at a hotel next to the station and will catch the first train back to Holland tomorrow, hopefully being able to grab hold of a pain au chocolat before I do so. The train which brought me down here yesterday had, inevitably, ran out of pain au chocolat by the time I decided I wanted to buy one to accompany a coffee. In typical French (or is that Parisian) fashion I was told I should have come to the buffet car earlier an not fallen asleep. Well, thank you! No thought that they should have ordered more to cope with the expected demand.

Anyway, I am going to have to find a way to enjoy this city better. Maybe a book with historical walking tours or something. I do not come here to hate the place, but I do find it hard to like it.

One good thing they have introduced but which I have not yet tgried are free bicycles. There are bicycle racks generously spread throughout the city. You enter your credit card and they take a € 150 deposit off you, and then you are allowed to atke a bike. It is free for the first 30 minutes, € 1 euro for the next 30 minutes and € 2 for the next and € 4 for every subsequent 30 minutes, theerby encouraging you to return the bike as soon as possible after getting from A to B. An excellent idea. I did not take my bcredity card out with me this evening and no have blisters on my feet from having walked so far. So Fred... we will se Paris by bike in two weeks time!

Time for bed now... bon nuit.

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