So, after allowing a whole day post-exams for me to relax and attend the obligatory student party bash, we flew to Paris. Great flight and might I add, France's RER rail network ROCKS. Grant had booked us a hotel room in the Latin Quarter. He thought it was a bit small (little bed, sit down bath only) but actually I really liked the place, chiefly because it had fabric instead of wallpaper, and different patterns thereof in all the rooms, and I tend to fixate on irrelevant details. Also the bed was verrrrrrrry comfortable, and most importantly the hotel was barely two blocks in from the Seine and Notre Dame Cathedral, so basically LOCATION LOCATION LOCATION.
On day one we just wandered around the 'hood, had a nice traditional French dinner (I like the snails), and were treated to very organised street dancing displays.
On day two, we killed ourselves with the cathedral (beautiful), a walk along the river to the Louvre, about 5 hours wandering around the Louvre with me getting increasingly hungry and bitching about it (but oh, wonderful museum, beautiful building, incredible exhibits esp if you skip the Mona Lisa), a walk through the Jardins des Tulieres, a walk along the Champs Elysees, and a squiz at the Arc de Triomphe. Then we took about a million hours to wander around the Latin Quarter looking for a Vietnamese restaurant that was open and had a decent menu as Grant had become fixated on the idea of Vietnamese food - do not believe it when pregnant women are accused of having food cravings; or rather believe it in my case in so far as at that point I was craving FOOD ANY FOOD DAMMIT I DON'T CARE WHAT KIND. We eventually found a place that had no English on the menu - an excellent sign - but somewhat complicating the ordering process was the fact that the menu was in French and Vietnamese AND that the French descriptions were basically "Saigon soup" without any ingredients listed, so I had no idea what anything was. We had some great food though. Downside: guy smoking CIGAR in RESTAURANT. Oh well.
The next day was our anniversary - either first (from wedding) if you ascribe to the setting-the-clock-back theory OR twelfth, if you want to be freaked out. We hiked out to the catacombs, but they didn't want me to go in because of Plan B's ever more obvious bump. So Grant went down to look at the freak bone architecture while I had the world's greatest snooze in a local park. I am still looking back fondly on that snooze. Then we basically gave up on the day, having wiped ourselves out with all the touristing before, and resorted to an afternoon nap before going out for dinner because PARISIAN MOULES FRITES IS MADE OF 100% AWESOME. Having eaten our bodyweights in shellfish, we had a nice stroll around the Eiffel Tour with all its night time illumination glad rags on then gave up on the day.
The next morning, we caught the very spiffy fast train to Geneva. SO much easier than air travel, and we got to see some of the countryside between naps. Pretty cool. Our Geneva-based friends met us at the station and there followed a terrifically enjoyable couple of days of wandering about the city, hanging around their great flat with its wonderful view, playing cards (at which I suck), and generally relaxing. A perfect way to follow up the hectic Parisian trip.
While we were away, Plan B started wriggling and kicking away like a mofo, or should I say I started being aware that Plan B was doing so. Proof of how damned hard she had to kick for me to be sure of it was that as soon as I was sure and asked Grant to feel it, he could. So, have gone from feeling nothing to being shoved internally with no fluttering stage whatsoever. Pretty freaky! In hindsight I could probably feel her for a couple of weeks before that but not many. She's nicely predictable eg if I lie on my back she starts doing this weird volcanic roll thing, I assume to get off my spine, and 10pm onwards is BOOGIE TIME. Clearly she bids fair to follow her father's night owl schedule.
By the way, European chivalry is not dead - in England and France both, gentlemen stand up on the train for the pregnant.
Grant's parents have now arrived in London. It's great to see them, but boy is the pixieflat cosy for 4! They have headed into town today for some sightseeing and a ferry trip to Greenwich; I'm meeting up with some other friends in SoHo later on. We're all heading off on a road trip to Cornwall on Sunday for four days; really looking forward to it!