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passionfruitdrink37 Nov 13th, 2012 10:34 AM

She's myy cousin..

annhig Nov 13th, 2012 12:13 PM

well don't forget to get a present for YOUR uncle then.

denisea Nov 13th, 2012 06:22 PM

You worry way too aren't forgetting anything important.

I do register any international on the state dept. website, just in case there should be any least they will know you are there and can assist in an emergency (not likely).

If no one posted these links, they are helpful if you aren't familiar with train system.

passionfruitdrink37 Nov 13th, 2012 07:33 PM

I just want this trip to be perfect! I'm not usually one to plan, but I've just been dreaming of this for so long.

annhig Nov 14th, 2012 08:37 AM

passionfruit - no trip is perfect, and expecting it to be so can lead to disappointment.

a few things will go wrong, but also some things will go very right, and sometimes the best bits are the things that you haven't been expecting at all.

menachem Nov 14th, 2012 10:11 AM

One last tip: there are lots of small cinemas all over Paris. Usually they have a very limited programme of classic art house stuff, some American movies.

The most beautiful of these is the Pagoda cinema:

cinemas can be great in winter for instant entertainment and to get out of the cold, even during the day. And you get to see a great movie (hopefully) at the same time.

By the way, spotted by locals is a great site (disclosure, I contributed for a while)

Also worth a visit (bring a bathing suit) is the Pontoise swimming pool on the left bank. It stars in many, many movies. And you can go there and swim. Used to go there lots to take my son swimming and it's totally cool in a french regulated sort of way.

passionfruitdrink37 Nov 14th, 2012 10:24 AM

I guess. This is the first time I've planned a trip, so my wanting it to go perfectly is unrealistic, but honestly, as long as I make it to Paris, I'll be ecstatic. This is actually a dream come true for me, haha. I don't know what else to hope for after this!
Also, apart from planning, what can I expect from the people of Paris? You hear a lot of stories about how "rude" Parisians are, and of course, I've never taken them seriously, but honestly, what can I expect? I've had a few friends describe being 'harassed' while being in Paris. I feel like it's more of a cultural thing. People here tend to keep to themselves in public; they aren't as forward, I guess?
But honestly, from those who have been or who currently live there, what can I expect?

StCirq Nov 14th, 2012 10:46 AM

Please don't fall for the stereotypical "Parisians are rude" nonsense. First of all, it's a big city, and just as in any big city (or anyplace, really), there will be some rude people. Second, you're in another country/culture; don't go expecting everything to be the same as at home - it won't be, by a log shot. Third, it's time to learn some French. IME, what really sends people off is when Americans (or Brits or anyone really) gets in their face and just starts talking in English, usually too loudly. Makes me cringe, and makes the French turn sour immediately. Whenever you have any encounter with a French person, whether in a shop, a café, a museum, ALWAYS begin with "Bonjour/bonsoir, Madame/monsieur/mademoiselle/jeune homme." Always. And repeat the same thing when leaving, except with "Au revoir, Monsieur..." learn how to ask if someone speaks English, e.g., "Bonjour, Madame. Est-ce que vous parlez anglais?" If they say oui, you're good to continue with English. If they say non, you're on your own.

I realize you don't have much time, but any effort you make to learn some of the language will pay off enormously. There are all kinds of free places on the internet where you can listen and practice:, BBC, and others. Your experience in Paris will be much enhanced if you can communicate even minimally.

I would never describe the French as "forward." If anything, they are far more reserved and formal than Americans. They consider it goofy to walk around with a big smile on your face. They expect you to be polite, not silly or loud. I'm sure you'll find a lot of exceptions among Parisians in your age group, but even they would never have any encounter without beginning and ending with the traditional formalities.

You'll be fine. You can expect the French to be gracious and welcoming, with very few exceptions.

passionfruitdrink37 Nov 14th, 2012 10:54 AM

I don't think Parisians are rude. I'm just asking what they are like and what I can expect. I'm not American either, I'm from Canada.
All I'm asking is what I can expect from people. Like I said, I've had friends describe their experience in Paris and say people were more "forward".
French is a non issue. I want to know how people behave.

passionfruitdrink37 Nov 14th, 2012 10:55 AM

I know things won't be like they are where I'm from. This is why I am asking what they will be like.

tdk320n Nov 14th, 2012 11:05 AM

Sorry for hijacking this thread but I wanted to thank Denisea
for the link about registering while traveling abroad.
I never knew about this link and will definitely register for all my future trips.

StCirq Nov 14th, 2012 11:09 AM

Well, I'm sorry I took so much time to respond, as I thought I was pretty clear about telling you what you can expect, including the issue of how "forward" the French are. As to how people behave, does everyone where you come behave the same? Well, neither do the French.

passionfruitdrink37 Nov 14th, 2012 11:25 AM

I'm sorry. I didn't mean to insult you. I appreciate you taking the time to respond, but I feel I didn't express myself properly.
I don't think the French are rude, and I know there are rude people anywhere and everywhere.
I'm not asking questions about language barriers. I just mean culturally. I'm under the impression that people in Paris are much more forward than I am used to. For example, my friend told me a story about how when she was in France, some guy hit on her on the metro, to the point of harassment. Similar story with another friend of mine. And another friend described being hit on constantly. Not just that, but people just coming up and striking conversations about whatever. This doesn't happen where I live. What I'm asking is, what else can I expect?

annhig Nov 14th, 2012 11:37 AM

What I'm asking is, what else can I expect?>>

honestly, I think that you are over-thinking this. people will be friendly, stand-offish, rude, nice, etc. etc. take them as you find them, follow St. Cirq's tips, and you won't go far wrong.

StCirq Nov 14th, 2012 11:41 AM

<<For example, my friend told me a story about how when she was in France, some guy hit on her on the metro, to the point of harassment. Similar story with another friend of mine. And another friend described being hit on constantly. Not just that, but people just coming up and striking conversations about whatever. This doesn't happen where I live>>

And it doesn't happen in Paris, either. In my considerable experience, the very last thing Parisians do is randomly initiate conversations - that's TRULY unusual.

Guys hit on girls all over the world. The Rome subway, the New York subway, any subway...but I've spent probably the equivalent of months of my life on the Paris métro and can remember only a single incident like that, a guy beginning to harass me on the métro when I was maybe 25. Fortunately, I was up to the brown belt level in Tai Kwon Do. I haven't noticed any behavior like that as a matter of course. Girls, particularly when traveling in packs in foreign places, also do dumb things that can invite that kind of behavior (not that it's any less appropriate, but it's not just a one-way street). I wouldn't go to Paris the slightest bit concerned about any of this.

apersuader65 Nov 14th, 2012 11:44 AM

Getting hit on" on the SUBWAY is not a regular occurence. I can envision circumstances where younger females might get "hit on" in public transportation, but Paris wouldn't be my first thought, New York probably more likely.

I would suggest that any anecdotal information about "people just coming up and striking conversations" in Paris would involve either North American's coming up to you asking for directions, or possibly a scammer trying to give you back your ring that you just dropped. Neither are common, but clearly possible in any big city.

I'd fully agree with St. Cirq - the french are not, even generally, a forward bunch. In my limited experiences, they are the opposite, but will, if politely asked (see St. Cirq's post above) for information, you'll likely get your questions answered.

passionfruitdrink37 Nov 14th, 2012 12:34 PM

Oh. My friend was talking about how some man began speaking with her about fashion. They had a long conversation about it (apparently, he was in the industry?)He wasn't hitting on her, just speaking. Personally, I'd be thrilled if some random Parisian just decided to speak with me about whatever.
I also get the impression that people in Paris are more direct? I know that everyone's different, but I just mean, I get the feeling that people are just more direct.
More direct than I am used to anyways.

Leely2 Nov 14th, 2012 12:56 PM

Just my experience: I'm an old bag and if I'm standing or sitting in some touristy place in Paris, by myself or with another woman, inevitably some guy approaches and tries to chat me up. It's the woman-tourist = easy-mark thing, for the most part, not really a "French people are more forward" thing. No big deal. I can only imagine it happens a lot more frequently to young women.

kerouac Nov 14th, 2012 01:27 PM

My advice: keep in your shell in the metro. Do not respond to young men there. Everybody is supposed to be going somewhere -- it is not a chatroom. If you want to meet other young people, you will have plenty of chances in cafés and restaurants or strolling around the city -- times when it is "normal" for people to interact.

passionfruitdrink37 Nov 14th, 2012 01:44 PM

Okay, thanks for the advice. By the way, I was looking at a thread on here with an article where this chef was talking about how people complain about not getting the full french experience when visiting Paris. But since you live in Paris, do you have cafes or restaurants to recommend that are only frequented by Parisians? Something fun, but not something tourists would know of.

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