Monday, September 22, 2008

Americans in Paris (via Greece)

I know, I know! It's been over a month since I posted anything on here. The truth is that this summer has been incredibly busy with work. I made some progress on my dissertation, which will focus on leadership and hierarchy in the first-century Christian community in Corinth. And then there's my normal translation work. I didn't think you'd all be really interested in a photo of me sitting in front of my computer, so the blog has suffered. : (

But now I finally have something to report. Pelagia and I celebrated 5 years of marriage last month, and to mark the anniversary I arranged a trip to Paris for last week. We spent 5 full days there and just returned this afternoon.

We have three different friends living in Paris, and they had all invited us to come visit them in Paris. One even had a free apartment to offer us, so that sealed the deal!

We flew out of Thessaloniki, had a brief layover in Rome, and then on to Paris. I had found cheap tickets with the Italian national airline, Alitalia, which--as it turns out--is on the brink of collapse. In fact, there was a good deal of uncertainty as to whether they would still exist today for our flight back!)

Our friend, Marie-Jeanne, met us at Charles de Gaulle airport in the evening, and then took us on a taxi tour through Paris (including a nighttime drive down the Champs-Elysees) on the way to her home, which is just east of the Bastille. See map below.

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As it so happens, Marie-Jeanne currently has two apartments in the same building, so she gave us use of the one on the top floor. Apartments (or studios, to be more precise) in Paris are, I imagine, much like New York. They are extremely tiny and expensive. But it was plenty for our purposes. And it had a wonderful view.

The top photo was taken from the balcony as soon as we walked in. That's the Eiffel Tower lit up in blue, with the Bastille to the right.

The third and fourth photos were taken from the balcony the next morning. Again, you can see the Eiffel Tower and the Bastille on the right of the third photo. The fourth photo is of St. Marguerite's, located next to Marie-Jeanne's building.

It was getting late by the time we arrived, but Marie-Jeanne had prepared a wonderful, typical French dinner for us, complete with fois gras. In the second photo, you can see Pelagia during the cheese course. : )

Stay tuned for Day 2! (Warning: I am making my way through several hundred photographs!)

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