So, after a *lot* of hush hush and tip toeing about, I was finally able to reveal our secret birthday/Anniversary trip plans to Mark! On Saturday morning at stupid o’clock, we
rocked up to fell into George Best’s airport and I presented him with an Anniversary card and an envelope containing our tickets to see… FRANK TURNER and SOCIAL DISTORTION in Le Trianon in Paris!! Yes – frickin’ Paris! How good a girlfriend am I?! ;p Needless to say he was well-chuffed considering he loves Frank Turner and never thought he’d ever get to see Social D, never mind in somewhere as amazing as Paris! So here’s a bunch of pics of the trip to give you a wee insight into what we got up to!
Cupcakes in Birmingham airport which almost made us miss our flight. Yes, the airport announcer man actually had to call our individual names to get us to hurry to the gate. Thankfully, a gaggle of grannies, parents and kiddies on their way to Disneyland were so busy bustling about and sorting out their stuff at the plane’s entrance that we made it on to the flight without being boo’d or slow-clapped by the irate early-arrivers!
(The Eiffel Tower is actually in this pic, but it’s faded and near the top so you probably can’t see it!)
First drinks in the first bar we could find once we got out of the sticky heat of the Metro station. Jeans, double-t-shirts and heavy bags blinded us to the fact – it was a fucking British chain of pubs!
Our hotel was right next to the Moulin Rouge, so had a bit of a burlesque, Moulin theme going on. It was a shabby, tiny little studio apartment – but it suited us brilliantly and added to the charm of the city.
This was a bizarre little market, definitely not what we expected hen we stepped out of the Metro station at Notre Dam. Lots of all kinda of parrots, love birds, budgies, finches etc, as well as poultry, ferrets, hamsters, rats, rabbits, mice and degus. There were lots of dog and cat toys and food stalls too. I bought our dog a cool collar. No doubt I’ll get a pic of him wearing it up soon!
Notre Dam Cathedral was amazing. So much intricate detail on every surface. Bizarre that there was a service going on with the regulars while hundreds of tourists circled the inside of the building taking photos. Oh and for the record, god didn’t melt, burn or smite Mark and I while we were in his house. Maybe he doesn’t hate non-believers after all! ;p
We didn’t go up the tower because we wanted to see as much as we could of the city in the short time we were there. The queues were insane and we would’ve been there all day, so we just sat in the park for a bit then took off again.
This was the brilliant view from the government building behind the tower. I think it was a government building.. I was calling it ‘Paris’ Stormont’, so even if it isn’t, it will always be to me! I think this photo gives a bit more of an idea exactly how big the Tower really is.
Mark ordered a beer. He was asked if he wanted a small or large one. Thinking, as you would, that a small would be a glass, and a large would be a pint, he ordered the large. let me introduce you to.. enormopint!
Arc de Triomphe, ending our crazily hot and painful walk along the champs Elysees. What a place – Massive superstores, moneybags galore and super car central. Mark and I must’ve looked like two tramps. By the way, the traffic here was insane – no lanes, no road markings – just madness.
We went to the sex museum. It was huge. And this was one of the most bizarre things I found. There was no explanation really, just.. a sexy girl with an owl’s head. This place was pure filth, we loved it.
This is us with Frank Turner. We finally met him! After years of going to his gigs and not having the balls to say hello for fear of saying something stupid, we finally said hello and met one of the nicest people in the world. Genuinely lovely guy who spent his entire time off stage selling his merch, chatting to folk and being an all-round-sound-as-a-pound bloke. ❤ He was supporting another band, US rockers Social Distortion who we both really love. They were incredible live. So energetic, funny and as for Mike Ness – possibly the coolest bastard that exists,, and what a voice! Amazing way to spend our Anniversary!
So there you have it. Some holiday snaps of our secret trip. Gutted it’s all over, but what a time. We didn’t see half of what Paris has to offer, but we took in a lot in the short time we were there. We want to go back for bus tours, Catacombs, museums, galleries and more hidden treasures in tiny side streets. Paris has so much to discover and I doubt even a month-long trip would cover everything, but we will definitely get back to give it a shot! We’ll just make sure our purses and banks are well-stocked!
Oh yes, and for anyone who doesn’t know who Frank Turner is, or who hasn’t heard his songs yet – you need to. Even if you end up not being a fan, you still need to hear him. He writes and performs passionately and straight from the heart and I doubt there are many who say he hasn’t spoken to them through his songs in some way or other. He tells it how it is, highlights the importance of living for the moment, following your heart and chasing your dreams and sings about love and loneliness as if he’s reading your mind – the man is a genius. Check him out! Here’s a video to one of his latest – and best – songs, ‘I still Believe’ – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sZ-D4jmkUiQ – enjoy!