We last left off with the story of a grand shopping mall and a day of my favorite activity; SHOPPING! Though I could have spent each of my limited days walking around the lavish shops of Paris, it was time for a new Parisian experience! This particular night was dedicated to a French theatrical extravaganza and a tour of Paris by night! Luckily we once again had Avi’s bike so we could drive throughout the whole city, and see it’s splendor in the dark. At around 6pm in the evening we left Stephane’s villa and made our way into the city. We were a bit hesitant to leave so early as the show didn’t start until 8, but with my sense of direction, and Stephane’s unfamiliarity with the area, it’s good we left when we did. We arrived only 15 or so minutes before they opened the doors to the theater!
La Belle et La Bete (Beauty and the Beast)
When we arrived to the theater we had just enough time to gather our wits about us and take a few photos before they opened the doors to the quaint auditorium. Our seats were located on the first balcony, fairly close to the back, but we could see everything just perfectly! We were very happy that we didn’t spend 60+ Euro more to sit in seats with the exact same view a few rows closer to the front. Good karma, however, must have been on our side that night, because about 5 minutes before the start of the show an usher came to our very row and told us he was relocating everyone in the row to an almost empty row of seats at the very front of the balcony! We were “first row” theater goers for back row prices! It was meant to be, and we were ecstatic!
Before I go into specifics about the show I must do a bit of personal bragging! The entire show was in French, obviously, and though I wasn’t too worried since I know the story inside and out, I was happily surprised at how much I actually understood. Sure there were some quick punch lines I missed (which was fine because my 5 star translator was right next to me), but I grasped a lot of the language and was very proud of myself!
With that being said, it was one of the most phenomenal productions I have ever had the pleasure of seeing. Better even then the Broadway musicals I have seen (ok well the one Broadway musical I have seen but you get the point)! The actors were phenomenal talents with voices that could move anyone to tears. It was funny, happy, sad, emotional, tense, and for being in a language I don’t speak, it kept me alert and on the edge of my seat for the entire 2.5 hour production! I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect theatrical experience in Paris, better even than the Opera would have been, because this production Stephane massively enjoyed. I’m not so sure it would have been the same story if we had seen an opera, and I enjoyed ten times more knowing he was having a good time!
It was almost 11 by the time we left the theater, I was bit tired, very cold, and was quite happy to be going home! But to my surprise we weren’t going home! Only minutes after we had jumped on the bike I noticed we were driving in a different direction than we should have been going, and only seconds later I saw the glimmering lights of the Eiffel Tower by night! Stephane had planned a surprise to take me to see it all lit up and shimmering after the show, and though I was freezing, I couldn’t have been happier! We arrived just in time to see the lights flashing and glittering before the shimmering lights became static, and once the tower ceased it’s twinkling we were able to take some truly incredible pictures set against a black sky and full moon! I forgot to mention that the amazing camera I took all of these great pictures on was given to me by Stephane’s dad, who surprised me and bought me a brand new camera after mine had broken on the third day of our trip 🙂
It was a magical evening and I had the most wonderful time! That man of mine pulled out all the stops for this trip, and every day spent with him in France was better and better!