Dear Everyone,

I’m sitting here by a cozy fire and a bit jet-lagged, but safe at home.  Four weeks ago today, I flew to France to be at Gilbert’s memorial.

What an amazing journey.  So full of blessings. Thanks for sharing it all with me. Here is my last email for the trip.

My last day in Paris, Monday, was full. The Hotel de Crillon in the morning, the Ritz in the afternoon. I loved the Hotel de Crillon, but found the Ritz ‘trop’ the French word for ‘too much’. Big heavy curtains, pretentious and over stated. That surprised me, but there you are.

That evening, I walked down to the Seine and went to a concert in the oldest church in Paris, L’Eglise Sainte Julien le Pauvre, near Notre Dame. A pianist and a soloist and Ave Maria, Amazing Grace and other wonderful sacred songs in a magnificent church with candlelight. Heavenly end to my trip.

I took the train to the airport on Tuesday morning early and arrived at Charles de Gaulle with plenty of time. But the police were holding us back. Baggages abandonees. Abandoned luggages, I was told. We had to wait while they searched. Everyone was tense. Then we heard a huge bang. More tension. Then another one. We were all thinking the same thing, probably–is this it? Am I going to be blown up here at the airport? No, please no.

We were all bracing ourselves for another blast when the whistle blew, but it was the ‘all clear’ and we could go. Thank you god.

I got put into business class again and it was heavenly.  Champagne, wine, white tablecloths, delicious food and a comfortable seat that reclined. It was an easy flight and soo pleasant. The last of the Cinderella moments of the trip for a while.

I’m home now with piles of mail to go through and lots of deadlines ahead of me but grateful and happy for all the joy of the trip. It seems a bit like a dream and I’m glad I wrote the emails because I have a record of it–it was real!

I’m sending some photos of my last day in Paris. Now I’m having trouble with my email here!!! But I’m sure it will work out soon.
Hugs and blessings,

Diane

'Traveling in Europe' 2008

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