"Ate, who is the tourist, you or your friend?" is the question I was asked by one of my dearest Adings when she saw my photos with my friends who visited London from the States in the summer. It happens all the time when I am playing tourist guide either in my city or any other place that I have been to before. Sometimes I even doubt myself whether I genuinely want to be the tourist guide, or because I just want my photos taken. Haha. Either way, I should really be a very special person to you, for you to even consider asking me to show you around, because I have the tendency to make your most anticipated trip to be all about me. You have been warned. Lol.
Kidding aside, a much needed catch up with one of my favourite people warranted a trip to Paris in October. Paris, being so convenient from London, has become a perfect rendezvous for me and anyone who genuinely wants to spend some time with me. Whilst I half-heartedly put Paris as one of my favourite cities in the world previously, I can now guarantee you that I absolutely love Paris. What I like about traveling to Paris is that each time I go there, I learn something new (of course), not only about the city but most importantly, about myself.
So, what is special about this trip? Well...
At last, I met up with Kristale in a place other than under our mango tree in Zambales. Having come from humble beginnings, where we are in our lives now is a proof that dreams do come true.
Also, this time I went around Paris like a local. Naks. Only because I finally found my way from Paris Gare du Nord to Sacre Coeur in Montmartre on foot without getting lost. Big achievement indeed. :)
From Montmartre, we walked down to Boulevard de Clichy for Moulin Rouge as per Kristale's request.
As we had reservation for lunch and were running late, we took an Uber taxi from Moulin Rouge to Rue de Rivoli for more or less than 10 euros. You would think that I would go back to Laduree because I used to love this place. However, I wanted to try something different this time. I wanted Kristale to experience something that perhaps people she knows who have been to Paris haven't heard of before. Besides, we have Laduree in London so I can easily go there whenever I fancy some Laduree treats.
So I chose Angelina, a traditional Parisian cafe which opened in 1903 and was apparently frequented by the likes of Coco Chanel and Audrey Hepburn. I was in awe of the cafe's magnificent interior. The elaborate paintings, large mirrors, classic French furniture and that golden lighting gave me the authentic Parisian feel.
Angelina is famous for their L'Africain hot chocolate and their signature Mont Blanc dessert. However, I was not very keen on chocolate drinks and sweets that day so I opted for what I was craving for (scrambled egg) and some extras (pain aux raisins, croissant, pain au chocolat and brioche) . The only thing Kristale requested was a glass of champagne.
226 Rue de Rivoli
Somehow I always get excited whenever I see the Louvre pyramid(s). It was even more exciting that I was with someone who was as keen to take photos. One thing I love about this courtyard is that there are so many different angles you can take good photos of.
I love candid photos and this is one of my favourite photos of Kristale:
And then she instructed me to do the "my head hurts" or "I have dandruff" pose. Well, because I am blogger after all. :)
After our mini-photoshoot in the Louvre, we moved on to the Eiffel Tower. I suppose my trips to Paris will never be complete without dropping by my favourite spot for a perfect view of the Eiffel Tower- the Trocadero. Can I just say that Kristale takes amazing selfies?
And blogger photos of course.
Our last destination was Notre Dame. I am really glad that I was able to go there during this trip because I missed it last time.
And that was about seven hours spent in Paris.
It was very heart-warming to meet up with Kristale in Paris. If anything, it was sort of surreal. It felt like it wasn't that long ago when we were both still in the Philippines, perhaps dreaming of the same big things. And here we are now, having champagne in Paris, seeing wonderful places and creating life-changing experiences. I am very happy for her, and I am even happier that we have managed to maintain our good relationship. Loyalty indeed shouldn't be questioned by people who are truly confident and happy.