So this week Betsy came into town. She came in on a Saturday afternoon after I had the opportunity to work a little bit. After I met her at the airport, I chauffeured her downtown where I showed her my apartment and some of the Toulouse downtown area. Sunday we went to the Safari zoo. This was very cool, because you get to drive through a part where the animals can walk right up to the car (see video). After the drive through part, they had what most of us would consider a regular zoo to walk through. We had a good time looking at all the animals (including the minihorse), and I even ate my first French hot dog there. It consisted of a hot dog shoved in the middle of a baguette with a ton of ketchup skirted in. It was pretty good.
During the week, I still had to work, but Betsy is grown up enough to take care of herself. She took some side trips including one longer than anticipated bus trip to Carcassonne. We spent most of our night eating at find French restaurants. I actually made my first over the phone reservation. I was so proud of myself until we walked in and realized there was only 2 tables with people at them while the others were all empty. It was still a good meal nonetheless. She also got to hang out with some of the old Wichita crew here in Toulouse, so that was fun.
The next weekend we headed out to Paris. I took Friday off and we headed out there Thursday night after work. Paris is a great city and I wish I had more time to enjoy it. We walked through the Louvre and I realized I knew nothing about art. So I was one of those cheesy tourists walking straight to the Mona Lisa. I even took a little nap while ‘studying’ some of the artwork on a nearby chair. We of course walked down the champs elysee and visited the arc de triumph. There was some kind of ceremony going on to commemorate the tomb of the unknown soldier there, but it wasn’t a very exciting ceremony (probably why we got front row seats).
And of course we saw the Eiffel tower as well. Waiting in line seemed like it would take up too much of our precious Paris time, so we didn’t go up to get a view of the city. We did see something that I thought was as equally entertaining though. While walking away from the Eiffel Tower, we saw a group of ‘street peddlers’ (basically the people selling trinkets in the street). Well, a policemen happened to stroll by and start to follow them around in his car, sirens a blazing (it had now become evident that this sort of peddling was looked down upon). I’ve never seen a group of men get up and run so fast in my life. And the way they moved is what was impressive. Like a group of minnows trying to avoid being caught. Almost synchronized weaving and turning. It was great.
The following Saturday and Sunday we played in a Frisbee tournament. We went 2-2, and played well at times, but not well at others. We don’t play enough together to be great, but maybe with more practice…Saturday night we went out to dinner where I tried steak tartar (Raw steak) for the first time. I’m still alive writing this blog, so it didn’t kill me. Don’t know how my stomach would handle it in large doses though…
Sunday morning Betsy took her leave and we said our goodbyes. Had a great week!