The Unofficial Last Night in ParisParis, Summer 2009

Exams are over. I leave tomorrow afternoon for Venice-the start of my travels before I return to Paris the last week of July. Many IES students have already left for home or their next excursion. Today I'm scrambling to organize the loose ends of my travels-euros, luggage, hostels, beaches, dangers. In other words, my last day in Paris is not my day for last minute sight-seeing and Au Revoirs...yesterday was my unofficial Last Day in Paris. After an exciting grammer final, IES had a departure lunch organized for the students. While reflecting over my farfelle, I realized a few things about my stay in Paris: 1. I learned more French than I had orignally thought. 2. I made several valuable friendships (we made sure to have one last picture taken of the "fab 5") that I hope to continue in the States. 3. I'm not really into cheese. 4. Paris is just short of paradise (only by 2 letters in French!) and I hope to return in a context in which I don't have to study as often. That night Devyn and I made dinner to celebrate our last night in Paris. We had a fabulous view of the Tour Eiffel during dinner and decided to change the scenery for nightfall. We found the best spot in Paris- the pyrmids outside the Louvre, with the glittering Tour Eiffel to our left; the entrance to the Tuleries Gardens ahead, and a glowing Ferris Wheel to our right. The Ferris Wheel is not a permanent monument, of course, so we figured that we had better explore. Le Fete de Tuleries, a carnival in Paris...what better way to go out? The carnival was different than american carnivals-the neon lights and colors, the clean rides, the music were all very remaniscent of the carnivals in classic Hollywood films. The man operating the Ferris Wheel thought is was hilarious to spin our car every time we passed. We could see the city from the top, when we weren't making circles. We rode the Phantom Train next, and a ride that tilted us and flipped us upside down. The carnival closed close to midnight and Devyn and I seperated at the metro, feeling dizzy, satified, and a little sad to leave the city. I made my last walk "home," and began to pack for my three weeks without one. I feel almost as unprepared to leave Paris as the day I left six weeks ago from Chicago, but I'll be back soon. A bientot, Paris!
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