The Eiffel Tower

Bon Voyage! (5)

Salut! This is my fifth entry of a two week stay in France. I’m here with 15 other students as part of my school’s exchange program. Specifically, I’m staying in Saint Germain-de-la-Grange, a town outside of Versailles (about 45 minutes from Paris). I’m staying with Victor’s family, the exchange student who stayed with me for two weeks in February.

This is the fifth post from my trip. I hope to post every couple of days (or more) about what I’m doing, seeing, and of course: eating. You can find all of the posts here.

Monday, 4/22
Today was a very relaxed day. The American exchange students went to a local museum in the morning, then classes for the rest of the day.

The museum was about Versailles, and it opened just for our group. We had a private tour, and the tour guide explained significant pieces to us. One of my fellow students fainted, but was okay after she had some water and sat down for a while. I think that was a first for the guide.

After school I got to go running again, and it felt much better the second day. I like how when I’m running, I’m not a foreigner or tourist. People don’t know I’m not French, only that I’m another runner moving through the town. I can wave and smile at people I pass and get a response without needing to know any words. It feels great.

Tuesday, 4/23
Time for The Eiffel Tower! We left school and took the train, arriving just in time for the little carousel at the base of the tower to open. Turns out I’m a little big for merry go rounds now, but I don’t think I saw anyone younger than me waiting in line.

Then we went up! I would have liked to take the stairs, but as a group we had to take elevators the entire way. Plus, there was less of a line because of it. The elevators were pretty clever. The one that goes from the base to the first level has to switch the angle of elevation half way through, and does so very smoothly.

After a few lines, we finally reached the top. It was amazing! The views were great, and I could see everything! I tried to take pictures of all the monuments I had seen on the ground or from La Sacré Coeur. I think one day I’d like to go up at night and see the city all lit up.

After walking around several times, we headed back down and ate a quick lunch. After that we went to the Musée Rodin, and saw Le Penseur (The Thinker).

Everything I’ve been doing has finally caught up to me, and I had to take a nap before dinner. Although it’s still only Tuesday, it seems like these two weeks are rushing past.

Jack Struck

Student in our nation's capital, studying International Relations with a focus on the Middle East. Web designer, runner, reader, and leader.

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