Hi from Rick: Moon Over Paris
When out late in Paris, I like to finish my day with a walk along the Seine. Floodlit cathedral, inky river. Fullmoon, lonely quay. Caryatid lovers, a walk with friends. Just enough red wine and then some. For years I've used the Seine riverbank walk, under a floodlit Notre Dame, as a finale for tours I've led. We saunter under trees, backlit by the moon and 2,000 years of history. With buttresses gently touching its walls like a blind person's fingertips "seeing" a close friend's face, the church glows. It's the way your last night in Paris should be.
|Tourist barges stream by at night.|
Years ago, I was enjoying a last night in Paris with a particularly enthusiastic group of travelers. We had just broken out of a group hug and were still sharing memories of our trip. Suddenly, night became day as a sightseeing barge — at full throttle, filled with flash-totin', Coke-guzzlin' tourists — sprayed both banks of the river with searchlights. I lost it. It was the only time I've ever mooned anyone. Looking through my legs at 400 tourists, I was blinded by the sweep of floodlights and a climax of flashes. If only I could circle the tiny white round thing in their scrapbooks. I'd autograph it.
I've mellowed with age, but I still appreciate the magic moments Europe offers us travelers. In this month's online Travel News we celebrate the arrival of our brand-new Best of Eastern Europe guidebook with a look at Krakow. To help stretch your vacation dollar, we share our "Thrifty Fifty" best money-saving tips. We learn how Europe's oldest and most established hippie community struggles to survive, and finally, our senior readers inspire us with travel tales proving that age indeed only matters if you're a cheese.
Elsewhere at ricksteves.com this month, we're hard at work filling your travel toolkits with great values: our railpasses and tours (both of which let you pre-pay for European travel in cheap dollars) are selling like hot crepes; and our bargain-packed online Travel Store is organizing a "Free Mona" campaign. Curious? Jump-start your trip here.