My sister Joanna arrived Saturday from North Carolina, via Atlanta. All went fairly smoothly. I picked her up at Charles de Gaulle airport, outside Paris, at noon. Just one problem: nowhere to be seen was her friend who was supposed to meet her at the airport in Atlanta and fly to Paris with her. Joanna said she had looked everywhere for Janice but hadn't been able to locate her.
It turned out that Janice had missed the connection in Atlanta because of bad weather in her area of North Carolina. Her plane was late. She ended up having to spend nearly 24 hours in the Atlanta airport before boarding a Delta flight for Paris the next afternoon. She finally arrived in Paris at 6:30 a.m. on Sunday. But her bags didn't. We are still waiting for those.
Paris was hot and sunny Saturday afternoon and all day Sunday. Joanna and I got checked into our hotel, the Hôtel des Carmes between the Place Maubert and the rue des Ecoles in the Latin Quarter. Then we set out on foot across the center of Paris.
I have almost never seen Paris so full of people. There were several major events going on in the city over the weekend: something called the TechnoParade, Les Journées du Patrimoine, and some of the Rugby World Cup hoopla. People were just kind of shuffling along, shoulder to shoulder, past the book stalls along the Seine, on the big square in front of Notre Dame Cathedral, in front of Paris City Hall, up the Rue Beaubourg, and over to Les Halles. It was incredible.
We walked up the Rue Montorgueil and then over toward Opéra before getting on the metro. We rode over to the Champs-Elysées and admired the Arc de Triompe in the late afternoon sun. There was some kind of ceremony taking place, with a brass band and some people in a procession carrying flags.
Afterwards, we walked down to Trocadéro and admired the Tour Eiffel. By the time we had had some dinner at the Café du Champs de Mars and caught the metro back to the Hôtel des Carmes, it was past 10:00 p.m. I was tired out, and I'm sure my jet-lagged sister was too. We had to get up at 5:00 the next morning to drive back out to the airport and try to find Janice.