We've Hit Paris!
08.10.2013 - 23.10.2013
It was back in January when I booked our October accom in Paris.
In case you haven't heard the back story to this trip, the plan was hatched after Phil's 60th birthday. He wanted a party and I delivered. But it was so stressful (because I stupidly did pretty much everything myself) that I ended up with Shingles afterwards. So after recovering from all that I started to think about my own 60th and declared that I (the Extravert Extraordinaire who loves a Party) didn't want a Party I'd rather spend my 60th in Paris. That was over 12 months ago.
We built the trip of a lifetime around that premise and 6 weeks ago we left Oz. The closer we have got to Paris the more my excitement and impatience has grown. And here we are it's October - birthday month - and we've arrived in Paris.
Our agent met us at the appointed time. The info we had been given was that we had to bring IN CASH the remaining payment for the rental which amounted to about E1200. So for 3 days in a row we had hunted down ATMs (Banque Automatique) and taken out the maximum daily amount in cash. We were also to bring a credit card so they could take a copy to cover the security deposit. Ah yes we wondered too! Why in cash, when we had made the first payment by credit card from Australia.
You guessed it, totally unnecessary. (Slight teeth grind as we smiled at the agent!)
So we start to settle in, and then it registers that this was not the apartment I had chosen when I spent WEEKS looking for the right apartment to fit needs and budget and location!!
Yes right location but a different apartment. The layout of this 45 sqm which was to be our home for 15 nights didn't maximise the minuscule space that is an apartment of 45sqm like the one I'd chosen and was sooooooooooo dark because its windows looked out on the narrowest lane in Paris - a mere 1.5 metre wide street. We could practically touch the building on the other side of the lane while hanging out the window! The light could never get in at that angle!
Yes it was the same price and same total space but I was pretty peeved.
It turns out that the person currently staying, in the apartment I'd booked 10 months before, had decided he wanted to extend his stay. So without any consultation with me, the agents agreed and moved us to another apartment and thought I should be mollified because it was the same size and would probably be quieter.
I was unspeakably angry at just being treated as superfluous to the decision. I kept saying why wasn't he moved or just told NO!!! But what could I do?
It wasn't a promising start. And the apartment was not in any way a place I found a comfort or a haven. It was so dark I found it oppressive and to make matters worse, three days after our arrival, the lift broke and is still to be fixed even today as we departed. So it was back to TFS. And what's more, with the bar that was on the ground floor under the apartments, the stairwell smelt like stale piss and smoke the whole time!!!!
Thanks heavens our friends the Vitales had a nice light apartment so we got some occasional inside light without the aid of orange covered lamps like those at our place!
And of course outside the door was Paris. So despite this big disappointment all was not totally lost.