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Thursday, January 13, 2011

99 bottles of beer on the wall, 99 bottles of beer . . .

Since my mind has been hovering somewhere over Europe lately, I decided it is only fitting to share more fun adventures from our honeymoon. Today's topic: the outrageously amazing alcoholic beverages over there across the pond.

Now the extent of my "sophisticated drinking" does not span too far back. Like any undergrad, the old days of college drinking consisted more of Coors Light, versus a nice Chardonnay. As a result of this, I am not too familiar with the finer points in the realm of leisure drinking. The same goes for Chad, but in Europe, he was determined to turn this fact around. He was OBSESSED with finding a reputable place to go wine tasting. Of course I was on board, but I wasn't going to jump out of the plane on the way home if we couldn't find a good place.

So Chad was able to find a great little wine store that held tastings in the evenings in the lovely neighborhood right next to the Eiffel Tower. Now here I am, this American, who thought that if one was to go wine tasting in PARIS, one should look presentable. Better than presentable, actually, but rather quite dressed to the nines. I thought it was the perfect opportunity to wear this:
Looking snazzy, right? So we left our hotel around 5:30, giving us more than enough time to take the metro to the correct part of town and walk around a bit before we took our seats to learn about Parisian wines. Well let me tell you, apparently I looked like a hooker or something! People were literally pointing and laughing at me. After awhile I started thinking something was on my butt or something. To make matters even weirder than they already were, we couldn't find the place! I asked these two teenagers how to get where we needed to be, and they laughed after we left! Chad and I just started laughing because it seemed so bizarre! The experience taught me that even though those Parisians are pretty dang fashionable, if you look like you're trying to be fashionable, you will look stupid. Anyway, after searching around town for over an hour, we accepted the inevitability that we were not going to be able to find out destination. Back to the hotel we went, with no definite plans other than getting me out of that ridiculous outfit and cracking open a bottle of champagne before we lit out for Paris at large!
So here I was after a few glasses of champagne. It took us about twenty minutes to walk from our hotel to the Tower, and we were giggling literally the entire way. It had been so long since I had had an opportunity to relax and let the bubbly flow, I couldn't get a hold of myself! Everything was hilarious to me! It was probably the best buzz of my life! Chad and I were speaking in the "French accent" we had somehow conjured up on the plane ride over, which I'm sure any French citizen would have been offended by if we had actually spoken that way to anyone. Back to the Tower. Our plan was to ride to the top, but unfortunately it was shut down due to overcrowding (which was how it was the entire time we were in town). So we decided to take a seat at one of the cafes in the area and have a little dinner. Our festive mood brought us more champagne. More wine. More beer. And even more champagne. Oh my goodness, we were having a good time.
The great part was that at no point did either one of us feel that we over did it. It must be something about Paris. Here I am with one of the practically-gallon sized beers I inhaled that night. Chad was having a hay-day because I hadn't been that silly in Lord knows how long. We met some Americano's who ended up sitting with us until closing time, which was surprisingly early at 12:00. We said farewell to our new friends, after they told us which areas of the Louvre to check out first, and we caught a cab back to the hotel. For a brief moment I had a vision of this cab driver selling us into some sex slavery circle because I thought he said he had to take a "detour" to our hotel, but Chad told me all was well and we arrived safely home.

Well, apparently a hang over in the states was the same over in Europe. NEVER had my head hurt so bad, and I mean NEVER. Here we were, in lovely France, and I had a headache?! No! I took some Advil and headed off to the Louvre (story to come!). Luckily, that night we found our lost wine tasting class and had a wonderful time. I learned that I love red wine, and that French wine is quite possibly the best of all time!
And that's the happy ending to our wine/beer/champagne extravaganza for the first few days of our trip!

Good thing that all happened in the beginning, because it gave me the courage to order red wine and experiment the whole rest of the trip! Good times with the hubby, good times!

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