We started the day with a hearty breakfast at the hotel (I was devastated to find there was no ketchup) and pioneered across Paris to Charles de Gaulle place/ Arc de Triomphe. If you ever visit Paris with me, we’ll walk for miles as it really is the best way to see everything.
We stop off via Galleries Lafayette on Boulevard Haussmann for squirts of perfume, a photo of the stunning glass domed roof and to stare at the beautiful Christmas windows. At the Arc de Triomphe we decide only to walk around under it/ at street level – and not to climb the 284 steps to the top. The view there is tremendous, as all the roads lead up to the Arc de Triomphe so I was slightly sad to miss out on the workout and rewarding view.
After a walk down the Champs Elysees, we find ourselves (joyfully) at the Christmas market at the bottom. I’d wanted to do the holiday in December for this very reason – the markets – so was delighted that they’d set up their Chalet-style huts of goodies by mid-November. It’s better than any Christmas market you’ve experienced in England – instead of useless wooden crafts and a pitiful handful of food stalls with nothing to sample, the boulevard is like being in Christmas town, with smells of paella, tartiflette (a tray of cheesy artery-clogging stodge), mulled wine, salamis, chocolate fountains and churros (weird and at the same time amazing sticks of doughnut) and so much more. Once I’d pulled Ollie away from the salami stand, we head for Place Vendome (designer heaven), Place de Concorde, Jardin des Tuileries, Rue Rivoli (home to the ONLY WHSmiths in France), and my favourite place for hot chocolate in the whole wide world: Angelina’s.
We ventured into Chanel on Place Vendome which I’d never done before, and probably won’t be doing it again unless I have money burning a hole in my pocket - it was definitely an experience though! Ollie seemed quite serious about buying a necklace until he discovered it was an alarming 45,000 euros. We moved on for a well-deserved sit down at Angelina’s, (226 Rue Rivoli, 75001, www.angelina-paris.fr/en)and a jug of their Chocolate Chaud L’Ancienne (which is literally double cream and chocolate paste).
the crazy happenings in my life