Week two consisted of a lot of figuring things out. It is still pretty early on in our school process so we are still feeling out our classes and how long it takes to get places and what every day is going to look like. During the week, I explored the neighborhood where I live and where ACCENT is and found a wonderful (and cheap) soup bar for lunch (Le Bar a Soupes)!!
Since we had no class Friday, Lena and I were planning on taking a trip to Fontainebleu, however it is expensive to take the train out of Paris on weekdays, SO we decided to wait for a weekend—- because it’s free. Instead, we went to a beautiful park in Paris’ 8th, that has a lot of random things in it. The park had some Greek/Roman looking things, a pyramid, one of the bridges that Monet painted, and even huge iron gates that sort of looking like Buckingham Palace. We bought some ham and cheese sandwiches and ate in the park. Unfortunately it was super cold and windy, but we were troopers and stuck with it.
After the park, we ventured to a few churches! We went to Saint Augustine church as well as Saint Sulpice and Sainte-Chapelle cathedral. All three were absolutely beautiful. Saint Sulpice is super interesting because its where old scholars used to the Prime Meridian was so there is a brass line in the church, where the believed it was. (Later, the Prime Meridian was moved to the UK). And Sainte- Chapelle was definitely a highlight. The stained glass was absolutely magnificent!
We took our time walking from the Cite area (where Sainte-Chapelle and Notre Dame are) all the way back to the Marais and eventually to the Bastille. At the Bastille, we found an “America” bar/restaurant to watch the Olympic opening ceremonies. It was a struggle to find a place to watch the opening ceremonies because apparently the French do not care about watching the Oympics.
Saturday, ACCENT took us on a trip to a small town outside of Paris called Chartres. As far as I am concerned it sounds like “sharts” but apparently its a bit more elegant than that. Chartres is your typical Medieval town. It is built on a hill, with the huge, gothic Cathedral on top, the town wraps around the cathedral ridden hill and farm land surrounds the outside of the town.
I must say, the cathedral was stunning and our tour guide, Malcom Miller, was amazing and so so knowledgeable. We spent about 45 minutes dissecting just ONE stained glass window. (I am actually not kidding). Besides the cathedral, Chartres is eh. It’s cute and probably way cuter when its not freezing and incredibly windy. BUT we did have some yummy onion soup, crepes and quiche.