Our last night in Paris was September 9th (2012). The one thing I wanted to do more than anything was revisit the many sights that Paris has to offer, but at night. To me, the best and most romantic way of doing this would be a dinner cruise on the Seine river. Besides, before leaving I secretly bought the perfect dress from our friend Jeff back home. It is a deep red, Helmut Lang dress with a slouch neck and long sleeves. The material is magnificent and the cut is flattering for all sizes. This dress was the entire reason why I spent those last prime days in the states toning up those legs for their Parisian fashion debut and it worked!
Hot, expensive dress, fashionable curls and tights I special ordered from the UK long ago – I was set.
Earlier that day, we followed some side streets to a cafe that looked nice and obviously served great coffee. We found a front row seat and sat like all Parisians – facing the middle of the street for prime people-watching. Just in front of us were three gents dressed as if they were on an Indian Jones themed safari and playing an upright bass, honky tonk piano and Idon’tknowwhat kind of instrument. The sight was as entertaining as the music.
We enjoyed coffee for nearly an hour while I was intent with people watching. As I had been assigned a “guest travel writer” position to write about Parisian Fashion, I decided the best way to photograph Parisians is in a place that is entirely local and not overrun with tourists. I snapped a dozen photos of outfits and styles I had seen frequently throughout the city as we sipped on our bitter espresso and slowly woke up.
From there we went to the train station and spent the early afternoon visiting the Sacred Heart Church from crypts to spires as well as the Dali museum and the Moulin Rouge.
Then it was back to Arrondissement 16 to get ready for dinner. We had little expectations for the dinner cruise since neither of us had done a cruise like this before or have known anyone to do such a cruise in Paris, specifically. We chose something fair in price and advertised with an “up and coming Parisian chef” on the Marine de Paris Bercy. The menu was fixed with only a few choices.
As we arrived we were sat at the front bow of the boat for a full 360 view and immediately given some small baguettes, still water, and a bottle of champagne. For the next two hours we cruised from one side of the Seine to the other, making two entire U-Turns with a view of the Louve, Notre Dame, Musee D’orsay, Eiffel Tower and so many other lovely buildings and places with a glowing night view. I think we can agree that some of our favorite parts of the cruise included just the view of dozens of people having late night picnics alongside the Seine, in full embrace with their lovers and best friends. Paris really does something to you to make it the city of love.
The cruise timed music perfectly so that each major tourist attraction that came into view, was serenaded by a song that made sense – from Frank Sinatra singing about Paris to Alicia Keys belting out, “New York!!!!!” as we passed the smaller Seine version of Lady Liberty as a display to the larger statue we have in the states as a gift from our French friends. And as you may have already noticed through the video, the entire cruise was ended with a wonderful display of miniature desserts and a dance party to the tune of Black Eyed Peas’s “Good Night.”