Snapshots from a Weekend in Bordeaux

mama shelter bordeaux 2Travel often enough and you will eventually have a trip that goes wrong. I’ve been very lucky so far – Central America has probably been the only truly bad trip I’ve ever had.

And Bordeaux definitely wasn’t bad – but it wasn’t perfect. I arrived in pouring rain on Saturday morning – like, biblical levels of flooding. Despite the fact that I definitely did not bring along the proper footwear for a potential apocalypse (does anyone?), I forced myself to wander around the town a bit, and I stopped into the Museum of Antiquities because there was an exhibit about the ancient cave paintings in Lascaux that I really wanted to see. Ancient cave paintings = the original street art! Well technically, ancient cave paintings = the original ART, but I digress.bordeaux streetsWhen my hotel was ready for me to check in, I relaxed for an hour, showered, and Google-mapped the rest of my afternoon and evening while I waited for the rain to pass.

And that part of the trip went great: there was a bookstore (Librairie Mollat, the biggest independent bookstore in France) and a macaron shop (M Le Macaron) I wanted to visit, and they were each a five minute walk from my hotel. I also wanted to stop by the Place de la Bourse to see if the world’s largest reflecting pool was all it was cracked up to be (it was great except for the 3000 children running around screaming. Literally did not see children anywhere else in Bordeaux except here).

And since it looked like the majority of rain had passed for the day, I decided to venture out to see the botanical gardens (free to the public and open until 8pm). They were just OK – it looked like many of the flowers might have drowned or been washed away in the downpour.bordeaux bookstorebordeauxAnd of course I was also excited to stay at another Mama Shelter hotel – I’ve stayed at their hotels in Paris and Marseille and I am absolutely obsessed. When I checked in, they noticed these previous stays in my file, and they upgraded me to a king suite to thank me for my loyalty. I celebrated by jumping on the bed a lot, because I feel like if you’re given access to a king-size bed, you’re contractually obligated to jump on it.

Mama also has locations in Lyon, Istanbul, and LA, so I am determined to visit all of them at some point down the line. So many more king-size beds await.mama shelter bordeauxOn Sunday I was supposed to venture out to nearby Saint Emilion for some bike riding through vineyards, but the weather wasn’t great, my back injury was acting up again, and I had a bizarre encounter with an Uber driver that really threw me off. So I decided to hit the Sunday market and then head back to Paris a couple hours early.

And when I got on the train and we started the trip back to Paris, it really felt like I was heading towards home. And I think maybe that was the problem: it wasn’t that the trip itself was bad, and it certainly wasn’t that I didn’t like Bordeaux. It was just that Paris feels like home to me now, and I really missed it the moment I left. place de la bourse bordeauxI know, I live in Paris for three months and suddenly I’m all Lifetime Original movie about it. But you have to admit this is still better than that one time I got super sad about gross shoes.

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Snapshots of a Weekend in Belfast
Snapshots from Salvation Mountain
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