European Vacation-Part IV Wrapping it up!
Okay, I am going to attempt to finish what I started. I decided to wrap it up in this post, so I can move on to some other nonsense. I think I left off somewhere at Red Light District Amsterdam, or maybe that’s where my mind is, in the gutter as usual. So here is the rest….Train ride to Paris, Eiffel tower, Belgian waffles, Belgian beer, crappy souvenirs, swatting off homeless people…Back through the Chunnel to London, seeing a play-The Graduate, Picadilly Circus where anything goes, and I witnessed 1,000 Hare Krishna’s parading out of the subway or “tube” as they call it. “Minding the Gap” Look it up. Tavern on the Thames where I met some french dude named Jean Luc, we made out and I lost my friends who left me in a foreign country, but came back in a taxi to get me. Thank god.
Okay, so that pretty much sums it up.
Seriously though, Paris is one of the most beautiful places I have seen, and I wish that we could have stayed longer. However, we did not get treated with much hospitality. We stuck out as Americans, I don’t know how, I think someone stuck a “kick me, I’m American” sign on my back because that is how I felt through most of my trip. Being that it was post 9/11 (nearly a month after) that could have had something to do with it, I don’t know. In Amsterdam, we were asked if we knew Osama Bin Laden. Umm..i didn’t know how to respond to that question, so I gave the kid the stink eye and walked away. We were also followed down the street by some man who was muttering the words “American’s”, “tourists” “go home”. One time, when we were eating at a restaurant, the waiter gave us our bill, and at the top of the bill it said “Yankees”, he apologized and took it back because that was his copy, and his way of knowing which table it went to! Geez
If you go to Paris, don’t ever go without some sort of pocket translator, or someone who speaks French. That will sure come in handy. I had to ask the woman at the ticket counter in the Metro station, which train I had to take to get to Montmarte Boulevard. She looked at me as if I was speaking alien and I was from outer space. I pronounced “Montmarte” 20 different ways in my best french accent before she said “oh yea, Montmarte!” All I could picture running through my mind was the scene from Money Train, you know the one…It involved gasoline and a match?! Also, while at the Eiffel tower looking for the Metro, we approached a group of heavily armed officers to ask them where the closest Metro station was and they just looked at each other and laughed. I had to close my eyes and open them again, thinking maybe I was delusional and having breakthrough schizophrenia.
Anyway, I’m not here to bash other countries, but the fact of the matter is, if you are an American traveling abroad you are not superior. You are in their country, so do some research before you go. I plan to travel for as long as I am on this Earth, and I will learn from my experiences. March will be my trip to Ireland which I am super excited about, but I have a resident tour guide (who was also my partner in these rantings) so I will be okay, let’s hope. On the agenda will be pub crawling, castles, and beautiful scenery. I will post about the trip shortly after I come back, but until then I will be continuing on with my random posts about everything and nothing!