Monday, July 20, 2015

Going to #London, #Paris? Go the old fashioned, fun ways!

Gare de L'est Main Concourse
Need a vacay? Hey, me too! If only to please my significant other who says I spend too much time tapping the keys and talking to "others" on TW and FB! (Really??? I do that? Time flies when you are having fun!)

This fall, he and I are going to...drum roll here...England. And our current, about length of stay. Eight days? Ten? Fifteen?

 I often vote for as long as I can get him to agree to the budget (a term I use too loosely which is why we have our discussions). Our longest vacay recently was a glorious 18 days in eastern France covering the American battlefields of WORLD WAR ONE. But I can get him to agree to 14 days and 10 often!

   What do we do? And why do we stay so long?
   First, very important here, we skip all hotels. Why? Too expensive AND they never let you in until 3 in the afternoon and by that time, you are ready to skin the receptionist because you are so jet lagged.  
   We rent an apartment. With washer and dryer so you can take a smaller suitcase. And a dishwasher. No, not hubby. A mechanical dishwasher.  BUT we have also found that in Europe, people tend to sleep very close together. Single beds or double are the norm. You wince? We do, too. Ergo, hunt for that rental that sports a queen or, if you really need it (and we do), a king.  Tough to find but they are there, trust me.
   s an apartment really that much more affordable? It is. Just think. You have your coffee and breakfast in house. You have a refrigerator so you can, if you wish, pack a lunch. We don't but it is an option, especially if you have food sensitivities or allergies and must do this for health.

   How do we plan? We decide before we go exactly what we plan to see. In order. Then we figure out if there is a Metro card (Visite, in Paris, London GO in London) and the right time period we need to purchase! We are also good to ourselves and KNOW that the first day we're there, we are good for the move in, breakfast at a local cafe, a nap and a glorious dinner. No touring. THEN, the next day we begin.

   Our WORLD WAR ONE trip began in Paris where we went to Les Invalides, where they have the most marvelous collection of items for display for the world wars. We did the Musee D"Orsay, walked along the Seine, and drank champagne till we couldn't any least, not that day.
What did I get from this trip that took us to Compiegne where the Armistice was signed in 1918 and to Verdun where the most costly battles were fought and to a wonderful museum in Meaux devoted entirely to the La Grande Guerre?

   I got  HEROIC MEASURES, written under my other name. This novel is about thousands of American women whom you've never heard of or eve thought about...I bet. American nurses who volunteered to go to France to nurse Doughboys in 1917 were paid HALF what an Army private was paid and had no rank. NONE. I could go on, but hope instead you will read my novel about these truly heroic Americans.

 Last fall, we went to Paris again and this time our agenda was to trace the history of France by visiting a few significant places in and around Paris—and to do so by taking only the Metro or the train!  We stayed for 15 days and let me just say, that it was marvelous. We walked at least 3-4 miles a day, because you leave the train station, by golly, you are hoofing it to the site you wish to see. BUT armed with good walking shoes and our umbrellas, we did it. And then—yes, you guessed it—we dined. And I must confess, we drank well, too. Because well, it is France you must taste the local produce, right???
   What did I get out of that visit? Well, I got marvelous backgrounds for my "Cerise went to Paris" Blogs on my own blog here:  

And I have wonderful info for my next few Regencies as Cerise!  Do read THE INCOMPARABLES, 6 HEROES OF WATERLOO AND THE 6 LADIES THEY ADORE BY 6 INCOMPARABLE REGENCY AUTHORS for 99 cents out now! The 6 are: Sabrina York, Dominique Eastwick, Suzi Love, Suzanna Medeiros, Lynne Connolly and me!
   And the material I researched appears in my entry in that box set, INTERLUDE WITH A BARON, Regency Romp #4...and in the soon to be released #3 in that series, MASQUERADE WITH A MARQUESS!

   Keep traveling and keep reading!

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