Short post for today as we spent most of the day traveling. Flew from Madrid to Frankfurt, Germany and then onto Paris where we thankfully took a taxi to the hotel (much easier than taking the metro and train like I did when visiting with some friends from the Tufts in Madrid program). Our hotel is less than five minutes from the Arc de Triomphe and in a perfect location for visiting the city.
We asked the concierge to recommend a nice but casual bistro and she sent us to a nice, “casual”, but pricey bistro a couple blocks away. The food was delicious, I had a salad and chicken skewers. So nice having a full bowl of salad with mixed greens and vegetables! Spanish cuisine does not generally incorporate raw vegetables or hefty salads, so it was like Christmas to be able to eat them again as a basic part of a meal.
After dinner we walked up to the Arc de Triomphe and then down the Champs Élysées. Mom and Dad returned to the hotel while I continued down the beautifully decorated street to the Christmas market. All of the trees on each side of the road were covered in Christmas lights that twinkled on and off, creating an almost magical appearance. The Christmas market is enormous, containing hundreds of tents and merchants selling everything from Vin Chaud, crepes and Belgian waffles (gaufres in French or gofres in Spanish), to arts and crafts like homemade greeting cards and custom jewelry. I indulged in a chocolate gaufre and made my way leisurely back to the hotel.