American Boy in Paris (part 1)
Recently I had the opportunity to go to Paris to DJ. It was an amazing trip which I felt was worth blogging. Due to spending so much time there, I can’t fit it all in one blog so I’ll be breaking them up into parts. Please enjoy!
I cannot begin to explain how I’m feeling at the moment.. Here I am, a once scrawny little kid with hopes and dreams to travel the world on the strength of his music headed to one of the most popular places in the world (besides New York), Paris, France. The culture, the food, the art, the music, all things that mean the most to me outside of family lie here awaiting me to pick it apart and dissect each branch within the many different areas of Paris.
My anxiousness is met with sweat as I arrive to the airport hoping everything is in order. I don’t know why it wouldn’t be… I guess you can call it pregame jitters? In any case, my flight was still scheduled for 5:25 departure and I was slowly calming down and settling into my dream of traveling to the City of Light.
The flight was comfortable. The seats were spacious, the guy next to me didn’t talk much, nor did he smell, and they served alcohol throughout the flight. Dinner was delicious. Shrimp couscous (it wasn’t called couscous, but it reminded me of it, so for memory’s sake we’ll call it that.) as an appetizer, some sort of beef drizzled with some kind of sauce, mashed potatoes, vegetables, bread, cheese, and your choice of wine or beer or hard liquor. I went with the beer.. Naturally.
After watching “G.I. Joes” and “The Hangover” I dozed off a bit, but not enough to qualify as a good sleep for the next thing I knew we were about to land as the sun in Paris was rising. The perfect welcome into the City of Light, being greeted by the King of Light itself!
The airport was fairly easy to navigate. Partially because it was 8am and no one was there and secondly because the signs were both in French and English. However getting on the train to go from the airport to the city was a bit of an issue.. I read that fares were 1.60 Euro, so I was only expecting to pay that much. So you can imagine my surprise when I was told my fare is 8 Euro! This is because Paris is set in zones and the airport is just about as far out as it goes (If you live in Chicago imagine being charged a higher fare going from Downtown to 95th than Downtown to 35th. Even more to connect to the Skokie Yellow Line. This is the best way I can describe it). So now my issue was I did not convert any money over so I would have to use my debit card to take out cash. This was easy. When I got to the ticket machine to my surprise, they did NOT take paper Euros. It in fact had to be in coins. This meant I had to walk around the station AGAIN to look for a Currency Exchange. And when I found it guess who was completely out of coins……… Frustration was starting to set in. I was walking around with these bags that did not seem heavy at first, but between my slight anger, rising body temperature, and feeling foolish the bags started to weigh me down. The lady behind the Currency Exchange counter directed me to a change machine that traded coins for paper. She did not tell me that they only did increments of 10 and 20 Euro! Long story short, it took a good 45 minutes to get enough proper change to catch the train into the city. But once I got there it was glorious.. Kinda.