@charcut desserts: chess pie, chocolate parfait, and espresso w/ @hotway. #yyc #food #yycfood
My last european stop after my Toulouse conference, and week in Paris was Rome. I spent 4-5 days there, it was awesome, but not as awesome as Paris I have to admit. I loved Rome for all it’s rich history and oldness (which there is loads upon loads of) but I felt that that’s all there was.
A recurring theme I felt of Rome was that you hear that things there are huge, epic and beautiful. It’s one thing to hear and read these things, and it’s a whole other very impressive thing to see it in person.
The Vatican for example, you hear that Michelangelo is a genius and blah blah blah. But the moment I walked into the Sistine Chapel, I thought to myself “holy sh*t, this place is covered in paint. This mofo painted this whole thing and it is absolutely gorgeous!” Then you walk into St Peter’s Basillica, that is one gigantic church, like mind-blowingly huge.
Another example, The Colosseum and the Roman Forum. They’re huge!! It was interesting how I stumbled upon these sites too. I was just wandering around what I thought was a side street of restaurants and boutiques, but I rounded a corner and BOOM there it was in all its glory. I found that that was the case for most of the Roman centre: you can walk most of it.
Rome’s awesome, I’d go back, but really I’d spend 2-3 days there and spend the rest of my time back in Paris.
In my last post I wrote about a conference I was lucky enough to go to in Toulouse, France. After the conference was over I spent a week in Paris. Oh my goodness how I love Paris! The city of light and romance did not disappoint. I’ve been to Paris once before, but I was a little younger and the experience this time was quite different as a young adult.
A few of the highlights of the week were some very little things. One of the mornings I met a couple of people at the hostel breakfast. We decided to go to the flee market, it was huge! At the market we ran into some other hostel tenants, we all decided to get some baguettes, cheese, olives, tomatoes, ham, pastries and wine. We sat in a park and just chilled. We were all leaving the hostel that day: some of us were moving on to other hostels, some were leaving Paris to go on to their next destination. I don’t even remember any of their names but it was really special to share that one afternoon with them and I’ll always fondly look on that memory, as cheesey as that may sound.
One of my favourite evenings I spent by myself. It started with this haute couture exhibition at l’Hôtel de Ville, it felt pretty classy. I had an awesome duck supper chased with a crème brûlée dessert and espresso (I had so much espresso on this trip). I then went to Notre Dame cathedral. It was closed, so I just hung out outside with the other tourists and watched this hilarious street performer. From there, I walked along the Seine, watched people wining and picnicing: it was so lovely! I kept walking until I reached la tour Eiffel, it was dusk by this point. The lights were all on, what a beautiful sight. I didn’t go up the tower, instead I sat in the lawn area around the tower and just layed there among all the couples in love.
I did love all the grandiose Parisienne things: the Louvre, l’Arc de Triomphe, La Basilique du Sacré Coeur. But the things that really stand out to me were the people I met and the little adventures around the city that I took with them and by myself.
About a month ago now I was given the opportunity to take a trip to Toulouse, France for a conference. The conference was on the Density Functional Theory software: deMon.
At the conference I met some interesting academic folks, gave my first conference talk, and learned a lot about what you can do with simulations for physics and chemistry.
I gave my talk on the last day of the conference. Afterwards, I was feeling pretty darn good so I went and partied at La Dynamo, a discotheque that reminds me a lot of HiFi here in Calgary. There was a show that night for Les Siestes Electroniques, an electronic music festival in Toulouse and Paris. Dabub headlined and they were bad ass!
I didn’t have too much time to explore the city of Toulouse ‘cause most of my time was spent at the Université Paul Sabatier for the conference. That being said, the city still left a mark of its charm on me.