Travelling on your own can be a bit daunting, (that includes flying) I don’t think anyone really enjoys it unless of course, you are truly looking to escape everyone and everything. I’m an extrovert, no surprise, right?! Truth be known, even I enjoy a little alone time but having someone to travel with can make all the difference in your experience.
I’ve travelled to Paris many times over the years and honestly three days on my own is a no-brainer. Armed with my list of things to do and places to visit, I didn’t really miss anyone except when it comes to dining out. The dreaded sitting alone at a table, staring at your iPhone for the one-hundredth time. I’ve learned how to improve on my experience with little things like asking for a seat at the bar or counter, usually, there’s someone to talk with, or at least the bartender (lucky them). When in Paris, try to snag a table outside, most face outwards, making it feel less awkward, scoring the best views for people watching and besides, it’s tres chic!
It’s shoulder season in Paris but when I arrived at a hip little restaurant called “Aux Pres” on Rue du Dragon (love the street name) I was surprised that they couldn’t accommodate a table for one. Really? But I get it…a table for one usually seats two people, the bar had an even amount of chairs, unfortunately for me, I was the odd man out this evening. Knowing my way around, I decided to head towards Rue du Bac, a quick walk to restaurant “Les Antiquaires” which has always been great in the past. Choosing my seat outside wisely, I was definitely not sitting next to the women chain-smoking or the old man clearing his throat but there was one other seat available, next to an English speaking woman (not smoking).
By the time my glass of wine arrived, the woman sitting next to me and I had already discussed where we were from, the purpose of our visit to Paris, the weather and shopping. We both enjoyed our meals and more wine, discussing a great range of topics, including family, work, politics and life in general. We laughed, “it’s as if we were meant to meet,” synchronicity? I love when this happens! We ended our evening, deciding, we should meet the following day for a bit of shopping and dinner, “it’s a plan!” It was then we realized neither of us knew each other’s names, LOL, immediately adding each other to our contacts.
My new friend and I met the next afternoon at “Galleries Lafayette”, we were seemingly in sync with each other’s shopping habits, is it a girl thing? Having spent a couple of hours, we were both satisfied, coming away with a few purchases and saying goodbye to a few expensive purchases…it was time for food and drinks.
With our hotels only 5 minutes away from each other…we walked to “Cinq-Mars” on Rue de Verneuil, a great restaurant and it was lovely not having to strategize where I would be sitting for dinner. We had a great evening and I can’t help but think, if it wasn’t for travelling on my own, I’m not sure I would have had the pleasure of meeting her. Raising the question, maybe it’s not who you travel with but who you meet in your travels that makes the difference in your experience. Nes Pas?