We’ll Always Have Paris

Dateline: Naples Italy!

Italy was an exciting, interesting, fun couple of weeks but it is time to move on to Paris. I spent my typical early morning in the dark hotel lobby, starting today’s blog, listening to street cleaners outside the french doors, (in Italy, ironically.)

Our stay in Naples was at a little boutique hotel called Caruso Place on Via Toledo. We were only there for a night, although our original plans had us staying 3 or 4 nights. (Plans change when you are whimsical and on a roll.) It’s a nice hotel with friendly staff, comfortable, modern rooms. Had we stayed to our original plan I am sure it would have suited us well.

The Naples airport seemed busy but the gates were all but empty. They regulate how early you can arrive at the gate but we had special service due to Fran not being able to walk well, or quickly. This service was incredible.

The woman who checked us in was rather surly and only spoke to us in Italian with no effort to communicate in English. After a bit, Fran used the Google Translate app to ask a question and the woman’s whole demeanor changed. She smiled and tried to help and arranged for our transport quicker than others in the waiting area. What we read on the internet was true (surprise surprise) that if you try just a little, people in “foreign lands” will appreciate it.

The special services was amazing. Wheel chair service started from near the entrance to the airport all the way to the gate, bypassing the check-in procedures and lines. We went directly to a waiting area next to the runway. A specialized bus took us to the airplane. The entire bus rose in the air and the crew opened the door opposite the normal passenger loading door. We were ushered in before anyone else (families with small children, service members, first class or status flyers.) The downside was we had to wait and be the last passengers off.

We checked in, I changed the SIM card in my phone and we prepared to leave for QC’s birthday dinner cruise on the Seine.

Our hotel room was…. disappointing. It was dark, small and missing the comforts of an American hotel, (i.e. no place to put a suitcase, much less two suitcases, very little room to walk around the bed, etc.) We bumped into the Rooms Manager, in the hallway, who arranged a different room for tomorrow as the hotel is fully booked with a convention tonight.

On the other hand, our dinner cruise was fantastic. We made it through Paris rush hour traffic with minutes to spare. A glass of bubbly when we sat down, along with some amazing bread. QC and I toasted her birthday and the fact we made it to the boat on time.

The sights were beautiful lit up at night. Sadly, the glass windows created many reflections, however at 45F I can live with them,

If anyone knows the names of any of these places, other than the Eiffel Tower, let me know and I will add captions.

The taxi ride back to the hotel was 1/3 the price as it was 1/3 the time of the ride from the hotel to the port. Overall, it was well worth Dan and France’s wonderful birthday present.

And now you know the rest of the story.