Paris: Day Six

We awoke around 7:30 a.m. and set about showering, getting ready for the day, and packing up our hotel room.  Once everything was packed, I left Holly in charge of checking out of the hotel and getting the bags to the curb, while I set out after our rental car.

I had originally planned to take the Metro, but it involved a transfer to another line, and given the distance involved, probably wasn't much faster than walking.  It was a cool morning, and about 15 minutes later I arrived at the Avis counter to pick up my car.

I wound up with a Renault Clio with a diesel engine, which was a slight upgrade from the Citroen C3 I had originally booked.  The rental agent showed me how to work the lights, and made sure I was capable of driving a manual transmission before setting me loose upon the streets of Paris.

Driving in Paris is rather difficult at first, as they've opted to make their street lights a bit more subtle than we're used to.  Also, like any large old city, there are numerous one-way streets, bus lanes, bicyclists, and pedestrians to complicate things.  Streets often change names after only a few blocks, for no obvious reason.  Staying near a landmark like the Eiffel Tower makes navigation easy, even when you don't know which street to take, so getting to the hotel was mainly an exercise in figuring out the traffic pattern that'd take me there.

I pulled up to the hotel to find Holly waiting by the curb, she threw our bags in the back, and we set off for Normandy.

I had printed directions from Google Maps before leaving the US, but after a few blocks, we didn't need them as the A13 highway was well marked, and I just followed the signs to it, and ignored Google's instructions, and soon we were out of Paris.