Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Tourisister, day deux

After sleeping off jet-lag and a late night of fondue, the sister duo got sandwiches for lunch and headed out to the Louvre. My original plan was to leave Nicole to wander around the museum while I went to class--alas, I had forgotten that the museum is closed Tuesdays. Instead she ended up with the cultural experience of sitting in on a French university class, meaning she was initiated to cheap espresso machines, crappy facilities, and a lecture-based course taught by a belligerently brilliant French professor. Ah, France. She hid in the back row, using an ingenious earbuds-threaded-through-the-sleeve method to listen to her iPod unnoticed as she leaned on her hand. High school boredom busting tactics seem to have evolved a lot since my youth--she also told me about something called a "mosquito" ringtone that takes advantage of the fact that youth can hear higher frequencies than adults to have a stealthy social life. Wow. Mom, dad, if Nicole's grades start slipping you know why.

After class we headed back to the Louvre area and beat the rain with a legendary, melted-chocolate-bar cup of hot chocolate at a place called Angelina. We then proceeded on to Passy, where I introduced Nicole to the furs, high heels and small dogs of the snobby 16th arrondissement ("Paris looks exactly like I expected it to") and NYU-in-Paris' cute house and garden before we headed onwards to the iconic tourist Mecca--the Eiffel tower.

Nicole, being 15 and largely too cool for school, wanted me to make it very clear that the "Eiffel Tower pose" she's striking in this photo was my idea. So there it is. I doubled the public humiliation by forcing her to order her lemon-sugar crêpe by herself, en français--fuel for the long stair climb up one of the Eiffel Tower's legs to the observation deck. I was surprised to discover that I actually had an easier time with the stairs than she did--I guess city walking has kept me in pretty good shape (even if that "shape" is considerably rounder than it was, thanks to rich French food).

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