During these past two and a half weeks of vacation time here in France, I have managed to get myself into all sorts of cultural trouble. As you will find out if you dare to continue reading. I will divide the two and a half weeks vacation into five series.
Some people see me as the responsible type of person. The girl that has a mission to get things checked off her to do list. It’s hard to be that person 24/7. It’s Exhausting! However, when important things are of the matter I do slip into my Ms. Responsibility suit. To begin this story, I must confess that one day that I needed to be my responsible self, I managed to let that stressed out person sleep in. Yes ladies and gentlemen, the one-day I need to be up at 7 a.m. to go to Paris and then go to the Charles de Gaulle airport to pick up my best friend is the one-day I let Ms. Responsibility sleep in.
In a panic I woke up at 10:30 a.m. My friend landed in Paris an hour ago, and I was an hour and a half away! Panic-stricken I smudged off the eyeliner under my eyes from the night before, threw on what ever I could find first. Out the door I went… as soon I arrived at the train station, I was in luck! The next train to Paris left in 5 minutes. I sat at the front of the train nervous and starting to get sick to my stomach. B is calling me now; I have been on the train for an hour. My mistake, I took the two hour train to Paris. Yes, the one that makes five stops in all these little villages towards Paris. I have one more hour to go and I convince her that she can meet me at the train station, the one that I will arrive at, Gare du Nord. I tell her the easiest route… take the RER B train to Paris Nord.
I arrive at the station searching for a red head full of curls. After thirty minutes of searching and countless men trying to hit on me at the train station [which is entirely creepy, if you have ever been to Gare du Nord you will understand what I mean.] I find her. Thank God! She has survived her first French experience. Her friend is ‘fashionably’ late to pick her up at the airport and she still decided to torture her more by making her travel the Paris Metro/Train system with suitcases in tow. Yes, I know, I am a pretty wretched friend but I tend to make up for it with my witty sense of humor.
We find a place to eat because we are both starving and it’s my treat, after all of the wretched friendness I must have a good side too. We head back to the train station to take the next train back to Amiens. And since we know that luck has been on my side during the entire day, the next train to Amiens is in four hours [which is rare indeed, there tends to be two at least every other hour one weekdays such as the one I find myself on.] We have four hours to kill, lets put the suitcases in lockers and see a bit of Paris and get a bit more French culture in, hopefully a better experience than the ones we’ve had so far.
In Amiens, I rush her out the door once more after she’s settled in to my room. I have two friends who are dying to meet her. At one of my favorite coffee shops in town B and I sit down waiting for my friends. I make her try some Ficelle Picardes, which is a traditional plate from the Picardie region, the one in which I live. My friends show up and we ended up staying out a bit longer than we had planned… oops.
Stay tuned for Part II.