Omggg these pictures from... dare I say it... 2012 are SO overdue!
I was having a little dilemma because in my entire history of blogging (like... 8 years), I've never intentionally skipped blogging about something because it happened too long ago. I mean firstly I never faced such an issue till the last 1+ year & secondly, I just... find it unnatural to bury my pictures somewhere. But I know some people do that, so I thought maybe I should just give up on these, right?
I will blog all these pictures if it's the last thing I do! *whatsapp bicep emoticon*
Ok I don't want that to be the last thing I do, an old lady in a hospital bed with a Retina 4D Holographic Touchscreen Motion Sensor Whatever Else Macbook Deity, but you get my drift.
So yes anyhow.
I was leaving Munich that night to Paris, where I was to meet the rest of my Willocq troupe for Christmas! My half-sister lives in Paris, but goes to her countryside home on weekends & holidays (very common for city dwellers cause having a house - not an apartment - in the city centre is too expensive). So we were spending Christmas at the countryside home!
But first up, I had to take an overnight train (which was like, 10 hours long) from Munich!
These are sleeper trains, with beds & a washing area.
Here's the view from my upper deck bunk!
I took the liberty of claiming the top bunk since I got there first.
I had a major concern for this City Night Line train: SAFETY
It's not like a plane, where it's "public". On trains you are in individual cabins.
YOU DON'T KNOW WHO WILL BE IN YOUR CABIN.
The cheapest ticket is for the 6-sleeper bunk.
Great for friends, but terribly frightening travelling alone.
You have no idea who the other 5 in your bunk may be! Scariest part - the bunks lock from inside. And, no one can open them from outside. Even the train attendants.
That's the only way to prevent thefts I guess?
I'd say that for travelling I'm already pretty adventurous/game for most things. I'm not the average Singaporean that won't stay budget, won't go out after dark, won't eat street food blah blah. But this scared me. I mean... worst case scenario... you're the only girl in a room with 5 other guys. Wtf.
I do know of one or two friends who travelled in this 6-person cabin before & it went perfectly fine (cabin wasn't even full) but you never know. So despite the rather large price difference, I got the 2-person cabin (cost 120 Euros I think).
Soooo in the end... my cabin partner was a sweet old lady hahaha.
She was probably even more concerned than me! What if she gets a cabin with a young hooligan blasting music & throwing down potato chip bags from the top bunk? Lolol.
Luckily she gets sweet, ol' me :D
The area opposite to put bags (see the blue netting) but no way I can heave my suitcase up there.
The doors open to reveal a sink area!
Anyhow, it was a very uneventful & actually very comfortable train ride to Paris.
I slept well (I mean you get an actual BED instead of a seat) & would definitely consider it for any future trips! A flight might be shorter, but getting to/fro the airport can be mega inconvenient.
Sleeping through the night to your destination is not too bad too!
So I arrived in Paris & was earlier than the rest of my family members!
Dropped my suitcase off at my sister's place then went down to Champs Elysées myself.
Look at this grand entrance! Can you guess where it leads to?
Yep because you can't have topless boys all year round.
Famous for their desserts! At this Ladurée on Champs Elysées you can sit down & have a meal (rather than just buying sweet treats over the counter) but there's usually a long queue.
Met up with the family & after a 2-hour drive we were at the countryside home!
This was my first time seeing a Facebook Games Gift Card & it made me super excited because... I sometimes buy things (yes I spend REAL money on fake virtual money) in online games.
Damn, "I spend real money on fake virtual money" should be in my bio somewhere.
Also my first time ever seeing a car actually roll downhill on its own O.O
This is unheard of in Singapore because firstly I think the car needs to be a manual drive one (also super rare in Singapore), secondly the owner needs to have forgotten to engage the handbrake.
Anyway that day was all about Christmas grocery shopping!
Christmas with my French side of the family is still pretty traditional. And overall getting groceries in France is a little different because people still go to the individual artisans. The bakery for bread, the butcher's for meat, the fishmonger for seafood & so on. So it can be quite a task LOL.
A form of log cakes! You usually have to order these in advance & the popular bakeries may require advance notice of a few weeks. And on collection days there's a long queue snaking outside!
Quite common now, but again, first time seeing it 2 years ago.
Got oysters for Christmas, which were opened by hand by my dad & sister's boyfriend!
(half)ASIAN TAKING SELFIE.
Reaction to my flip-out screen -> "what is this contraption" - imagine in French
Also quite common to get flowers to decorate tables & all that.
And also the biggest dog I've ever seen in my life!
Huge Great Dane! Its head is literally bigger than mine wtf.
Ok next update should be Christmas itself.
Following that would be visiting Vivaleng in Norway & then I'm finally done for 2012! *confetti*