Thursday, 3 June 2010

He's wondering only what you do today

A couple of days after handing in my master paper and right after doing a presentation on Twitter (in front of a jury consisting of people from the Flemish public broadcaster), I took the Thalys to Paris to meet my boyfriend there. He was doing a cycling trip from Italy back to the UK, but was staying at the friend's place in Paris for a part of his trip. The timing couldn't have been better for me: post-paper and post-presentation, but pre-exams with plenty of time left to study. Alan's offer to spend a couple of days with him in Paris was more than welcome: I was longing to see him again (I'm pretty good at the long-distance thingy, but wouldn't go as far to it's easy), liked the idea of going back to Paris and to be honest, I needed a holiday after being locked in my room for such a long time because of that paper.

After the longest Thalys ride ever (it left half an hour late to begin with, and had to stop for at least another hour because of 'a small technical problem' that turned out to be 'slightly more serious than we initially thought' - fortunately I love having dinner on trains) I finally arrived in Paris, where Alan, Adam (the friend that was hosting the both of us, he's a lawyer who is temporarily based in France) and Flora (another friend of Alan's who works as an au-pair in Paris) were waiting for me. Alan and Adam hadn't had dinner yet, so we went to a restaurant where Flora and I decided to have dinner for the second time that night.

While Adam was working during daytime, Alan and I spent the next three days lying in parcs (getting awfully sunburnt - the weather was amazing, which I hadn't forseen, hence my lack of sun lotion - auch!), eating wonderful food, cycling on vélops, going to a flee market with Flora, eating not so wonderful food (at a place where they translated croque monsieurs as 'crunch-misters') but also more wonderful food, and walking around the city. On our last night, Adam took us to Jewish wine bar, which turned out to be the coolest place ever. It looked a bit like my beloved Make Up Club in Ghent (on a side note: Make Up Club is closing down in half a year, nooo!), but smaller, warmer and with Jewish music playing, haha!

Me & Alan trying our best MySpace shot

Alan getting ready to cycle out of Paris

I almost missed my Thalys back - Alan and I were planning on cycling to the station, but we wasted too much time and he noticed I could probably better take public transport in order not to miss my train. We said goodbye and I hurried to the metro station. My metro ticket didn't work so I had to buy a new one, which I couldn't do in the part of the underground I was in, so I had to find the other entrance, buy a new ticket (after begging the people in the queue to let me go first), find out which metro stop I had to go to (it would be so much simpler if they'd just call it Garde du Nord as well), get on the metro, watch the time every second, walk for almost 15mins from the metro bit of the ENORMOUS station to the part with the trains, and get there 5mins before departure - phieuw! When I finally got there, someone tapped me on the shoulder. It was Alan, who had made his way through the busy traffic on his bike to wave me out. That was such a lovely suprise after all the stressing!

Saying goodbye was really sad, but fortunately I got to see him again only three days later. The next part of his cycling trip brought him to Belgium and more specifically my hometown Grimbergen. He only stayed for one night, but I was happy to have him with me. We went out for dinner with my parents (both my parents and Alan were pretty nervous, hehe) before my dad dropped the two of us off in Brussels. We went to the Mort Subite, a bar famous for its beers, but Alan started to feel really ill. I drank both our beers ad fundum (the people next to us looked at me as if I, nothing too positive, anyway) and we went back home. Except for a sore troath, Alan felt better the day after. After watching some tennis, he had to leave. I was planning on joining him on part of his trip that day, but had to go back as someone had to pick something up at my place and I was the only person around. Saying goodbye was the horror, knowing our next meet (in London, after my exams) would only be 5 weeks later. :( Only 24 days left now, though!

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