I am laying in bed in the dark thinking, well today’s the day. Its my birthday and I am 40. Its going to be a great day. I get up and check out the street action from the terrace. Surely everyone know’s its my birthday right? Mark gets up and we decide to go on an early morning bike ride. We make our way through the sleepy streets to check Place des Vosges, the oldest square in Paris. The precise proportions offer a placid symmetry. There are 36 redbrick and stone houses – nine on each side of the square. The formal gated-garden’s perimeter is lined with chestnut trees; inside are a children’s play area and a fountain. Aside from hanging out in the park, people come here to see the house of the man who once lived at No.6 – Victor Hugo author of Les Miserables and The Hunchback of Notre-Dame.Upon my return I am greeted with kisses and hugs from the children and some presents. Caitlin bought me a white gold and diamond bracelet which is divine. Ryan bought me a very large bottle of Cartier perfume which is only for sale in Paris. Its beautiful – so Parisian! Mark has organised a surprise for which I need to be ready by 10am. I have been trying to guess, and let’s face it, I love a challenge and a bit of competition. No loose lips here. We take the Metre and our destination is Musee du Louve Palais Royal. I am led up a street and taken to a day spa. I was booked in for an 1 hour massage. It was sublime. So relaxing. Time for some lunch so I take everyone to the terrace at Printemps (9th floor). It has a commanding view over Paris. Ryan goes all French and has the Salmon and vegies, it looked wonderful. Caitlin is feeding her food baby salad and Mark and I opt for the quiche. Printemps home store is amazing. They even have a dog store section. Wish I had more room in my bag to put some of the most amazing kitchen gadgets I have ever seen. I decided I needed an emergency Macaron and visited the famed Laduree. Their chocolate Macarons are simply the best.
A quick Metro ride takes us to the Arc de Triomphe. We then sauntered down the Champs de Elysees. Birthday dinner is a 7.30pm at Auberge Nicolas Flamel [see separate post]. What an exquisite meal. I couldn’t have dreamed of having a better birthday with the people I love and in the city I love the most. What an experience. What memories. Truly blessed.