A Travellerspoint blog

In Dubai!

As per FB update...

Storm started (6:20pm) whilst waiting for airport transfer. Pouring & with thunder & lightening! There was an NZ couple (their daughter lives in Caboolture!) & an older lady (who reminded me of my grandmother) from Broad Beach on the shuttle bus with me. The older lady did her 1st trip to Paris in 1955 & has been traveling once a year ever since, always 1st class! Total confusion on check-in. Was told to put my luggage on the weight/belt, was told I couldn't take it on, wat tha! Suitcase weight 15kgs, bag 7.9kgs (have 30kg allowance). She meant my carry-on. Had to make sure it was under 7kgs. She laughed when I went to put my backpack on, "don't worry, totally under 7kgs!". Told/warned the NZ couple so they didn't put their check-in luggage on, then have to take it off, then put it back on again. But for them, check-in lady called someone on the phone when they gave her their passports. We still have no idea what that was about. My backpack was stopped through security. Went all through make-up bag even though sprays/liquids in plastic see through bag, aka coles sandwich lock bags. Full on stickybeak through everything in backpack. "What's this", my dettol no wash hand sanitizer & again for my aromatherapy face mist (been using that a lot, ylang ylang, sweet orange essential oils etc). Didn't bother with sugar stash or chewing gum in seperate plastic bag, go figure! NZ couple were both frisked! Perfume still costs more here, but based on Aust $ being low - convert €'s, that's probably why. Maybe in Dubai or bangkok will be cheaper. Gautier, Jeans not here either : ( Kat-will look in myer, as you suggested, when I get back if I can't find prior. Myer must not have sold out as of yet, as told in Paris Duty Free, must be discont too! Don't think I'll get much sleep, Zimbabwe rugby team on flight currently being very roudy. Hopefully they will quiten down after take-off. Sitting in middle row (4 seats) isle seat, as was hoping no-one else would be sitting here, so I could put arm rests up & turn into make-shift bed. Alas no, 2 of the rugby guys on other 2 seats, but have 1 spare beside me. Surrounded by them, all in rows above & beside me! Only 2 seats in rows left, can't find 3 or 4, so now have window seat with one beside me free near back of plane, away from loud/talkative guys! Due to storm/pressure up high will be flying low, but later in night/over Turkey, will go to higher altitude, as per captain update! Okey dokey, heading down run way, so phones going off (have in-flight mode but no point leaving on for 6.5hrs) & me to sleep, hopefully... Only got 3hrs. Woken up 30mins after take-off for dinner. Then had rugby guys (walking in Isle, stopped behind me) talking to stewardess, asked them to keep it down or please move. I think he was big notting himself to all who could hear, hence loud. PT & yoga instructer when not playing rugby, who cares, need sleep! Woken up by Captain @ 5:20am=30deg. Then again by stewardess asking for my blanket. Not sure if accidential or not as had feet, curled up, just off 2nd isle seat, & she had blanket bag on isle floor. Gave her 1, had 2 (+ 2 pillows), & kept other until landing. Airport transfer to hotel=upgrade to private driver : ) Cool guy, aussie rock on radio, giving me sight seeing info. Passed tallest builing, couldn't see top of building out of car window. Temp @ 7:30am=35deg. He said today about 45deg! Hotel like our Sheraton back home. Private driver took all luggage from airport, in boot, opened door etc. Concierge here opened door, took luggage to reception, checked-in. (@ 8am - woooo hoooo! Sooo need a shower) & up to my room! So nice to not have to carry from here to there! Glad I bought long beach pants & top, thin cotton. Planning that for tour this afternoon, but think I'll be wearing that as of now. Not sure where shopping centre is, doesn't look like it's in this building but hopefully they have shuttle there. Planned to/will be buying similar outfit to the one I bought, for tomorrow. Reception not sure on tour departure time as of yet. Will ask again later & if not confirmed by 12pm, will have them call for me. Ok, off to have shower & charge phone/camera. May also have nap! : )

Posted by LisaNujin 21:29 Comments (0)

Last Day In Paris!

Non-FB's

Finally, starbucks, raw sugar & skim milk!!! No skim milk @ all in Europe. I asked Simone & he said they don't. Only had the 1 brand/shelf skim btl @ supermarkets! Lol, Simone told me to take a bucket to the cattle farmer across the road, point @ the skinnest cow, then @ bucket & do milking action with my hands, classic! Most places have brown/raw sugar, those that didn't, out came my secrect collecting stash, as per back home. But none in Paris, & I only had 2 left, which I used for 1st coffee when I arrived. I tried to explain, he had no idea, so out came my final 2, large coffee. The lady then said "oh, we don't have that here, but I've heard it's supposed to be good for you" lol. Mmm...my stomach hasn't liked me. Once I hit 30, not that I was partial to having full cream & white sugar, digestive system changed & takes ages to digest. Bloated stomach for days! Yep, probably too much info! But my joy over Starbucks with skim milk & brown sugar, the simple things, hey! Have re-filled secret sugar stash! Can't do Grande Arche (view over city) as now a Minestery building as of 2yrs ago, but they still have entrance fee booth out front (no one there though), go figure! Glad I didn't head here last night, chose froggy legs over lights (other side of Paris), as no light show either! Was raining too! Oh well, what to do now, shopping of course! : ) Mainly window, Paris very expensive! Btw, can only bring 2.2 ltrs of alcohol back into Aust. I know why, our tax is sooo expensive. €100 to ship from wineries, other countries sooo cheap to ship. Also, only €10 for absolute vodka, 700ml, in Reggio!!! And, can only bring $900 worth of stuff, excluding clothes back home. Paris, least favourite place, thus far (Sorrento still my favourite, followed by Nice, with best restaurant being the one in Sienna, with truffles dancing on my tounge! Oh, & the choc filled donught in Reggio, so yummy! Crossiant type soft pastry, with a hole in the top, filled with creamy type nutella! & best Gellato=ferro rocher @ Primavera in Sorrento where the Pope blessed & has eaten as well, as all other famous people! Did Monaco/Monte Carlo the other day. Monte Carlo is spectacular, but couldn't afford anything there! Would LOVE to go back to Sorrento, when I win lotto ; ) Greece is next in about 2yrs, followed by Russia. & hopefully Vietnam/Ho Chi Min for just over a wk in about a year). Glad I came to Paris, of course, but wouldn't come back! General public are really nice but service industry eg. cafes, shops etc (not restuarants, they were sooo nice, friendly & funny, but found small ones down side streets. Tour guide for Paris tour wanted details of one I went to for snails! Said service & prices like that are rare here.) are so rude & pretentious! They all speak English, & I'm talking a little French so not sure why the stuck up attitude! Even the lady in the cafe the other night was so rude to a French guy & even worse to me. He apologised to me on her behalf! Starting to miss home & all of you. Think it's the whole attitude here in Paris. Plus being tired & cold weather. Bring on Dubai!!! That's making me smile now! Soo far behind on TB logs, will have to try & cram all lol bits from past 2.5wks into a general one. Probably best for you all as I'm sure you don't want to read 2.5wks of days stuff : ) Everyone keeps telling me how brave I am travelling by myself, even when I expain Simone & Monia (had sms, they miss me & Giada keeps asking where I am, tooo sweet). Big thanks to Renae (boxing trainer, more like personal trainer/mate) for correcting my punches, sparing in the ring, one-on-one sparing & the kick-boxing over the years. Haven't had to use any yet, but gave me the extra confidence ; ) Here's hoping I don't until my first session back! Now in hotel (to send this), about to head to cafe, across the road for a coffee whilst waiting for airport transfer. Next destination Dubai! Am hoping to get, at least, 5hrs (only 6.5hr flight) between here to Dubai as will miss proper (well, have no idea what that is anymore) nights sleep with time change-over. Hopefully, when I get home, it won't take too long for hot water system to heat up, as turned all power of from the mains,so I can shower & head to bed. Will do washing whilst waiting for hot water. But, who knows, may be jet-lagged & go for a run first. Well, that's what I presumed prior to leaving! Then, not driving anywhere, provided car battery isn't flat (only replaced about a year ago), will head to Jasmins, one stop on train, for dinner! That will surely give me a great nights sleep ie will be carbed out/tired! Plus no food in fridge, obv, with mains turned off. Hopefully free wi-fi in Dubai, otherwise no update until, well, who knows when! Need to call voda when I get home to re-activate internet & v/mail on Aust sim for phone. Doubt I'll be getting on the laptop, no offence, until Monday, as I know I'll be on there checking emails, fb, seek (hopefully won't take long to find another contract/job) etc. Btw, still on 16MB card with 1372 Pics (including vids) so far! Camera only out for about 6mths, hence couldn't buy duty free but found @ Targee' (target), of all places reduced from $299 to $199 week prior to leaving. Would have taken too long to ship off net. Had to get mini memory cards, case & touch screen protector (which I had to cut smaller), all not for this camera, from different camera shop on Canter Rd. Is 16.1 megapixs, so sales guy presumed either approx. 1000 pics or 1hr video for 16MB card! Is so tiny, smaller than i-phone! Those interested, is Samsung MV800 Multi-view. Okey dokey, next stop Dubai. Chat soon xox : )

Posted by LisaNujin 08:48 Comments (0)

Had Frogs Legs For Dinner : )

Update non-FB peoples

Had Frogs Legs For Dinner! Cold day today. Started showering @ 10am, but on the bus, so all good. (I sound spoilt don't I, lol. I have been, weathers been 28-30deg until Paris. Will be around 40 when I get to Dubai!)... Thankfully the rain stopped in time for ND Cathedral! Had lunch @ the Eiffel. Food, wine & views were fantastic! I asked the waiter where I could go for Frogs legs as I didn't see on any of the menus thus far (lots of snails...), neither had Karen or Coby (mother & son holidaying together). He wasn't sure (Brittish Accent) so he asked one of the French waiters. We all presume they serve & eat frogs legs here in Paris, but they don't. Every French person has had them but not many restaurants here serve them.The French waiter went & looked on the net for me & came back with 3 printed & gave me to piece of paper. He explained the 1st one was very good & reasonably priced. Me, merci x about 3 : ) As we were leaving, he said, from top of restaurant stairs (2 lvls) "booked?" then "9:30" with 9 fingers followed by 3 fingers. I was thinking, huh, what's he on about (was a good hour after the print out), when Karen said I had a date for the night. I then laughed @/with Karen, rest of people on the tour & the waiter and said, in jest, "ok, but you're paying". He winked, laughed & waved goodbye. Did River Seine Cruise after lunch. Bought a macchiato, from the vending machine onboard (wasn't too bad!), as it was quite cold. But, I did sit up the back-not under cover, so, to be expected ; ) Mmmm....didn't really bring any warm tops with me, all summer ones, plus zip up hoody.... It's supposed to be 28degs here, but hey....what happened to our summer!!! Had to wear my hoody heading to dinner. Refuse to pay €80 for a thin designer jacket. Couldn't find any non-brand stores (so not a designer girl, as you would know!). All places had their heating on this afternoon so I knew I'd be fine in the restaurant with a summer dressy top. Lol, I saw a red poncho type thing, hooked at top, with fur around the neck & also at the bottom of the sleeves. Went inside to have a look, they also had blue, brown, but I liked the red. Anyway, I presumed it cost €19.50 (was sticker on coat hanger), was on strip with sourviner shops. Was hanning on open front door. I asked the lady the price as there was no € in front & the others had dfferent numerals on them. Helloooo....€195! Was not just fake fur, as I presumed, actual real fox fur. Nup, out of there... ; ) Saw lots of people on the way & @ the Resturant wearing jumpers anyway. The restuarant for frogs legs was via Miromesnil (subway around the cnr) to Invalides, then change trains from there to St. Michel, about a 10min walk from there. Was spitting as I left, but purchased a small umbrella with "Paris" & The Effiel Tower on it, not that I needed the rain to do so ; ) All so bought sml Eiffel Tower glass statue filled with vodka (€9.90), about 3 shots. Hey, if I ever drink it, can fill it with water, lol. Don't think I'll be buying perfume from here (not meaning duty free as not sure on prices as of yet). Walked into a tax free shop, they also now don't have Coutier, Jeans for Women (the one that's been discontinued in Aust. She said maybe totally discon.) anyway, they wanted, after tax discount, just over $100 for medium btl of Dior Hypnotic! I told her I can get it cheaper at home, which I can from Bisarios @ Panania. Ok, back to frogs legs. Restaurant was down a side street, didn't have number on print out, so I asked some guy closing up his shop where it was. He told me I had to keep walking to the end, then said laughing, "I've already had dinner, no thanks (in a very stong french accent) crack-up. Restuarant was full when I arrived, as was the way from last night. If they had been empty, wouldn't have dared enter for snails or frogs legs. Have great travel insurance (thanks Nina!), but still.... Had to wait 15mins & you will see from pics, they specialise in frogs legs, froggies everywhere. I hugged the statue whilst waiting & gave the comical one a sympathetic look. Yes, of course I took pics : ) lol. Anyway, was set price for 3 courses, so went with that. Otherwise there were about 20 different ones to choose from. Waiter said I made a good choice for my first time trying as that one is traditional (apart from the garlic butter one) & had them 3 different ways, battered, crumbed (with banana, which I didn't realise until my first mouthful) & mixed in with potatoes done as chips, 3 big chips/wedges! They kind of taste like chicken with the texture between chicken & fish. Were very nice, especially the banana one, strange! They did have one on the other menu done with cider & apple... I had the Duck Foie Gras Creme Brulee for entree. Was sooo nice! Asked the waiter for a suggestion on wine to go with frogs legs, lol. He recomended a white (Vin Blanc) & told me that would also go well with the brulee, which it did. I heard part of a conversation "you're only as old as the person you're feeling", lol. People just presume, (well one would hope so after the convo the other day, pmsl! Have part done ready to post. Couldn't on o/n train as bed, well bunk light, didn't work. Was fixed around 11pm, with aircon, hence I couldn't sleep, tossed & turned until just after 11.) that being in a foreign country & speaking in your native tounge, when they don't hear anyone else, that all's good & they won't understand. Either that or they were pissed & didn't care. 3 men around 50. Off to bed now, almost 1:30am, another long day. Can sleep til 9am, don't need to check-out til 11am : ) Will get everything organised the head across the road for breaky. Airport pick-up is @ 6:45pm, flight @ 9:50pm Wed 13th, land Dubai Thurs 14th @ 6:20am... Is 6.5hr flight. Not sure on check-in time (have transfer to Hotel), have my safari starting around 3:30pm, depends on sunset time. Hotel will, hopefully, already have confirmed time. Another time change. Nite : ) x

Posted by LisaNujin 16:38 Comments (0)

Update re. dinner - Had Snails!

non-FB peoples ; )

Was 20degs @ 7pm. The maps here are like rome 10mins = 20mins. Where as in Nice, 10mins = under 5mins, I kept walking too far, lol. Back to coca lite, Nice is coca diet! Well, Ate snails for entree! Was a bit concerned using the thing to pick them up with, (aka American guys, runway eye lash curlers) as I know from pretty woman "their slimy little suckers", but I did well. There was an Older gentleman, probably early 70's a couple of tables down, sitting facing me who said in French (high school French is coming back to me now. But, not that well, understood from his hand language), to use my fingers. Which, of course, I didn't. Texture is like chewy chicken, can't really describe the taste +
but had garlic herb butter. Was really nice though. There were 2 American guys (Tenasee & New Jersey) to my left. I sneezed, they said bless you, I said thank you. That's when one of them asked if I was from Syd. Bit of a shock as I keep getting asked if I'm from England or America, everywhere I've been. Told them & asked, how he knew Syd. He said Syd & Melb have different accent, go figure! Has clients in Aust, they were her for stop-over 1 day, heading some where for work, I didn't ask where. They asked if I wanted to join them. I said thanks, no, all good (was prior to snails, they said would let me enjoy). The Older gent started laughing when I took some pics, of snail & me about to eat first one! Was making me, & Americans, laugh. Very funny French guy.it got a bit cold, so I put my scarf on (silk from Bologna, so warm). He told me he liked my scarf, I looked pretty, but why pics of food & not of me. I must take a pic as pretty, so I did, lol : ) Ordered duck with honey sauce, soooo nice! He said, in his French accent, "no..... pictuurreee". I explained I'd eaten duck before but the snails for the first time. Again he said I had to, then as I was taking the pic of me about to eat, he said, "no quack quack". Classic, not sure who he was making laugh more, me or the Americans. The waiter was also a total crack up. He reminded me of Pepe Lapu' lol. Kept trying to sneak behind me when I was taking the Pics (new camera is multi-view. Viewing screen flips 180deg. Btw, @ 1238, including vids on still the same card!). Will do night lights tomorrow as @ 10pm it's still light. Did Arc, left there @ 10:30, very moving. They only have "1914-1918" as they have no idea of his DOB not knowing who he was.... Heading to bed now, another loonnnggg day! Tomorrow on tour bus, wooo hooo!!! Will still be walking but not the 5-8hrs of late. Up @ 7:30, pick-up @ 8:30. Gives me time to get some breaky @ the cafe across st, as not included here. Btw, faulty towers is €111 per night. And, they want €8 for breaky, which I saw this morning=crossiant, sml youghart, oj, coffee & piece of fruit! Oh, walking back passed restaurant, a guy looked like Al Bundy, sitting outside. I stopped & looked, he looked, so I kept walking. It was the nose & his hair. I presume Al's aged since Married With Children though.... This was no look-a-like though, saw Bruce Willis walking through (well with a huge body guard in front, one on each side & one behind him. That's why I looked) one of the rich streets (Aust ally way) in Rome when I was trying to find the Chocolate Shop. That stopped me in my tracks. Did a double take, they were walking towards me. When I realised it was actually him, they went around the cnr @ end of st. I followed, went around the corner, goneski... Nitey nite. Hope all's well xox

Posted by LisaNujin 15:12 Comments (0)

Non-FB friends

In Paris

Hi all, update-arrived in Paris this morning, all good. Am staying in Faulty Towers, seriously, lol. Concierge not helpful at all; lift only just fits me & my suitcase, but alas, I'm on the 3rd floor, & 3rd floor out of order. Got out at L2 then walked up very narrow spiral staircase (getting good @ lifting up/forward my suitcase with right knee, trains & train stations all stairs! Room door is timber grey but they have wallpaper of soild wooden oak door on it! Shower is handheld but has adjustable height/angle holder, as per all in Europe thus far, but it doesn't hold the weight for adjustable angle, down it went, so shower floor got very wet, only thin shower curtain. Hung soaking wet shower mat, after twisting all water out, over curtain rail, it fell down, held by suction caps on ends. Thought I may have been overtired, which I am, or sugar levels not good as floor in room feels slopey, it actually is, pmsl! Concierge called about my tour this morning, Lourve Museum to confirm meeting time & place, he told me Lourve Museum, when I thought it had to be @ the tour company, & it was... I got here @ 8:30am, so took the Metro, thankfully, stood in line to be told I had to go to information, they then called, had to go 10mins up the street to Tour place but be quick, so off I ran, made it with a couple of mins to spare. Saw The Mona Lisa, amongst other things, all other pics do not do it justice. That's when it hit me I was actually here. Took pics & quick video as sooo many people & she is in a bullet proof glass cabinet, roped off a fair way back. More walking, & up a lot stairs! Then took my time doing the 25min walk back as couldn't check in until 1:30pm. Then lol as above. Just back from buying adaptor plug. The one for Europe which is "supposedly" the same for Rome/Paris etc does not fit. Didn't yesterday in Nice, but lovely concierge leant me one. Simone has never had any probs. Another 20min walk there, then back again & €10.90 later (again took my time, camera is now charging. Will check packet again when I get home, purchased 3 pack, bought Europe & United Emerites with me, & if the packet is labelled wrong, I'll be contacting them. If it's a Lisimbo moment, well... ; ) Off to have an early dinner (haven't had lunch & River Seine is approx 20min walk) then slowly make my way to Arc de Triomphe for the forgotten soldier tribute which is @ 10pm. The La Grande Arche=Spectacle of Lights is about a 1.5hr walk, but will take Metro there tomorrow, after my tour, look at the shops & have dinner there. Also, by the looks of the post cards, Champs-Elysees, main square, also does a night lights thing which is mid way between here & Arc, which is also near River Seine. So can take time after dinner to look @ that, which is also not too far from Eiffel Tower, well going by local map, but it's on other side of River so won't know until I get there. Weathers been funny today, 1st time it hasn't been 28-31degs. Arriving on train it was raining, but the minute I was out of Metro, rain stopped, thankfully! Been sunny/overcast all day with a slight cold breeze. Everyones walking around in winter jackets, I'm in jeans & t-shirt. Will opt for jeans & not a summer dress tonight, just to be on the safe side. Btw, Simone said it starting raining again when I left. Had been raining up until I arrived. Maybe Paris wasn't aware of my arrival time, lol ; ) Ok, off for dinner...

Posted by LisaNujin 15:10 Comments (0)

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