The ideal combination for a trip is mixing a running race with my favourite city, Paris. During another March break, I flew into Paris, boarded a train to Rambouillet, walked to my hotel (I couldn’t find a bus or taxi). After settling into my hotel I went to get my race kit as the race was the next day. Yes, I would be running a half marathon (21.1 km) in a new time zone so that at 9:30 am, it was really 3:30 am my time.
While it was cold and cloudy, the race passed by some nice scenery, including Chateau de Rambouillet. As is typical for French races, there were raisins, sugar cubes, and sliced oranges along the route. And at the finish line, there were treats like pound cake, cereal bars, and hot chocolate.
Headed back to Paris via train and stayed again at Hotel Diana (73 Rue Saint-Jacques in the 5arr), a great little hotel near St. Michel and Boulevard Saint Germain and the Sorbonne. In Paris, I visited:
- a special Yves Saint Laurent retrospective at the Petit Palais. Many of his famous gowns and outfits were on display.
- Cimetiere du Pere Lachaise-the largest cemetary in Paris with many well known people buried here, such as Edith Piaf, Jim Morrison, Oscar Wilde, and Chopin
- Bois de Bologne
- Walked all over the city including les Grands Boulevards (Printemps and Galeries Lafayette), Rue Cler, Boulevard Saint Germain, Latin Quarter, Rue de Rivoli, Champs Elysee, and the Montparnasse area.
- Did my running in Luxembourg Gardens
- Fondation Henri Cartier Bresson-admission was free to visit (after 6:30 pm). At the time there was a Robert Doisneau exhbition on. Like Bresson, he was a street photographer famous for his photographs of Paris from the 1930s.
Excursion to Fontainebleau
I took an excursion to Fontainebleau. It had been 32 years since I had last been there and I wanted to see the chateau again. It was as beautiful as ever….even in winter. Very easy to get to via train from Gare de Lyon (was about 17 Euros). Spent the whole day there.
Back in Paris I went to a special Yves Saint Laurent retrospective at the Petit Palace. Many of his famous gowns and outfits were on display.