First things first. Ankle is much improved! Guess the icings yesterday helped. I meant to take it easy today but that’s not possible in Paris. Well, it FEELS easy – just one more thing to see… and suddenly my Fitbit HR Charge tells me I have walked 6.5 miles.
Not sleeping well – I think I forgot to turn the Kindle light off and so I had the dreaded computer/electronic-light producing insomnia. There have been many strange electronic failures – Ed Dunn told me it made sense – I was in France, electronics decided to go on strike! Ha. But things seem to be better today.
The client meeting/phone call was scheduled for 1530 so I worked my day around it. I had this mistaken view that the tea trays would be cheaper in the Montparnasse area. Mistaken. But it wasn’t a waste of time because since I was in the neighborhood, I went to the Montparnasse train station to buy my tickets for my ROAD TRIP. Well, train trip.
This was a big test – did my senior carte work? And could I buy from the kiosk with my Barclay or PenFed credit cards? This is a big deal! Europe is so far ahead of us on chip and pin technology. After the Target debacle, the US is finally getting on board. So before I left, I searched high and low for a chip and pin card. (Thought I found one last fall in AmEx’s Wells Fargo card. But no! Didn’t work anywhere with the PIN in October. Closed that one.) Barclay has the Arrival + card – a client used it in Germany last September and said it worked everywhere. So what’s the big deal? Everyone here uses their card in the machine and enters their PIN. US cards take longer because we have to sign. And in spite of promises from Barclay and PenFed, the PIN doesn’t work. Well, the PenFed doesn’t work at all. And the Barclay has an interesting habit of working some places and some places not. So far it comes through in the kiosk situation which is the most important. So – long way of saying that I was successful in purchasing my train tickets with my new senior carte for the discount and the Barclay card with the PIN. The senior carte cost me 60 euros. I already saved 40.
Street markets. Right outside the train station – got two “scarves” for 10 euros. These are more like throws – so I can used them as picnic blankets or on the floor for my exercises. The Marche near my house – had photos earlier – the one that goes up and down practically daily! – was still up tonight and ready for action tomorrow morning. I may try to get over but it’s an early market.
Eventually found tea trays… lots of buses, walking and metros… (Cool thing is that when you cross and street and look down, there’s always something interesting. And many times I can actually recognize it!) but home in time for my client. And shame on me – I let it run over half an hour. Oh well…
And that’s when I decided to push the ankle a bit more and sauntered down to the Seine. About 1.5 miles? On the way I scouted out several places to come and read or write when the weather is warmer.
There’s an island between Neuilly and La Defense.. It has a sports facility and some open park area. You would forget you are next to the major business center of the Paris area. The sun was starting to set as a barge went by.
And the neighborhood. I finally found something that was not quite as far out of my reach as everything else I have seen advertised in the realty windows. Can you make it out? 11 square meters. Yup. That’s 118 sq feet. And it is going for the really afforabable price of 110,000 euros. With the current exchange rate, that’s $116,000. For a room.
Tomorrow I will be doing some planning for activities. There are some English/French language exchange Meetups – like speed dating – 15 minutes English, 15 minutes French, change partners. And some walking group Meetups on Saturday and Sunday. And I just got an email from Phillipe! He’s a member of the Over 50 French/English people who want to speak French/English. He contacted me directly to see if I wanted to meet for coffee and conversation. Huh? When did Meetup become Match.com?