I was in London for a business trip during the last week of October, meeting new colleagues and saying goodbye to the beloved office building before the big move. A mini-vacation in Paris was called for before the work week started. This whole trip was quite interesting in that I had to change my watch five times: 1) DC to Paris +6 hours; 2) Daylight saving ends in Europe -1 hour; 3) Paris to London -1 hour; 4) London to DC -4 hours; 5) Daylight saving ends in US -1 hour. It wasn’t easy to keep my mind clear all the time.
Paris was the first city I visited in Europe, in 2009. I did most of the highlights in those short 2.5 days – Tuileries Garden, the Place de la Concorde, the Arc de Triomphe, the Eiffel Tower, Champs-Élysées, the Louvre, Basilique du Sacré-Cœur, Moulin Rouge, Notre Dame Cathedral. I still remember all the excitement and the many breath-taking moments as if they were yesterday.
So what to do during this second 2.5-day visit? Plenty.
The Centre Pompidou
Palace of Versailles
The Eiffel Tower (with the moon)
Notre Dame Cathedral (with the Seine)
Paris is such a lovely place that I have to come back sometime and stay for 2 weeks, so I can revisit the Louvre, go to the Rodin museum, get to the top of the Eiffel Tower, walk more along the river, and do more people watching…
Seems to be a good time to post another travelogue. This one covers 2006 to 2009. It was quite an eventful time period for me. There were successes, but more trials and tribulations. The travels didn’t stop though. In a way, they brought a great deal of fun and comfort and positive energy to my life, and kept me going.
- A 2500-mile road trip in western Canada, from Vancouver to Banff to Calgary to Edmonton. Not just the sights at Lake Louise, Banff National Park, Jasper National Park were utterly stunning, even the views on the road were marvelous. My breath was taken away so many times that I lost counts, but my camera did remember them all. I also visited Whistler and Victoria, and of course places like Stanley Park and Capilano Suspension Bridge inside Vancouver. New experiences also included tasting ice wine and walking on a glacier. It was a perfect 12-day get-away!
- Made another trip back to China under the extremely sad occasion of my dad’s passing away.
- At the end of the year, I visited Kansas City, MO again for a church conference, then made a side trip to Des Moines, IA and Madison County to see the famous covered bridges mentioned in Robert James Waller’s novel. Strictly speaking, this should belong to 2007 as I was there on the New Year’s Day.
- Visited Boston again for a get-together with a few old friends. We drove to Rhode Island the next day and had lots of fun.
- A short trip to Durham, NC for my cousin’s Graduation at Duke University.
- After attending Joint Statistical Meetings in Denver, CO, I rented a car and drove to Rocky Mountain National Park. From there went on to Colorado Springs and took the Cog train to Pike’s Peak at 14,115 feet. This is the highest point I have been so far.
- My first cruise experience! The ship departed from New York City and cruised towards Canada. Places visited: Saint John, Bay of Fundy, Halifax, and Dartmouth. It was an unforgettable trip for many reasons.
- My first trip to Europe, during which I visited Paris, Brussels and Venice. These three places were as amazing as I expected them to be, yet so different. I decided that I really like Europe! I did most of the tourist highlights in each place, also tasted Irish coffee and snails for the first time! Need to go back to Paris sometime since the 3 days I spent there were far from enough.
- A road trip to Myrtle Beach, SC and Outer Banks, NC. Didn’t spend too much time sitting on a beach but both places were beautiful and relaxing.
- A trip back to Beijing, China to visit my family.
This is a good stopping point, because year 2010 alone is worthy of its own post. Stay tuned for my crazy 2010. 🙂