Wednesday, July 9, 2014

A great week with my parents

Hello world! I have had an eventful few weeks and all of my updates will probably take more than one post! Lots is changing over here, but all for the better. The cafe that I had been working at since I moved to Carmarthen closed unexpectedly a few weeks ago, so I haven't been working now for nearly a month. I was lucky to have already been in the search for a new job, and with perfect timing I actually had another job offer within a few days of the cafe closing, otherwise I would have been incredibly stressed. I am still in the process of sorting out paperwork before I can start my new job (references and background checks and such), so I'll save details of the new job for a later post. But the plus side of losing my cafe job was that I was unexpectedly free to go and meet my parents in Paris before they came to visit us in Wales, so I planned a very last-minute trip to see them! I arrived in Paris last Monday, June 30th, and that evening my parents and I ascended the Eiffel Tower. We went up just before sunset which was pretty neat as we got to see the view from up top in both daylight and darkness. When we came down the Eiffel Tower had just begun to "sparkle". I have a nearly identical photo to this one that I took last time I was in Paris, but I just think that is such an incredible view!

My parents and I at the Louvre
The following day we did a lot of walking around Paris, taking in all the views of the various monuments for free, and we also did a boat tour on the Seine River. This was the first time I've travelled in a foreign country with my parents and I really enjoyed getting to explore with them!

Luxembourg Gardens
The following day we took a day trip to Versailles. I have to say I wasn't as impressed by the palace as I was the first time I went, but I am so glad we got to see the gardens! That was something I missed out on last time and they are incredible, if only for the vast amount of ground they cover. I also enjoyed hearing my dad's stories about his time studying in Versailles, and we took a quick detour into the town to see if we could find the house he'd lived in while there, which we did! We also went to see some gardens inside of Paris called Luxembourg Gardens, which I thought were even prettier than the Versailles gardens. I read that Luxembourg Gardens were inspired by the more "dreamy" style of English gardens, so I guess that means I prefer the English style gardens!

Oystermouth Castle
My parents and I then flew back to Cardiff together, where Josh picked us up, and the four of us spent the weekend galavanting around Southwest Wales! The weather wasn't perfect but we were still able to take in many of the sights--sheep, Oystermouth Castle in Gower, Cenarth village and falls, the National Wool Museum, Llansteffan Beach, the National Botanical Gardens, and a private tour of Ffynone House courtesy of Amber and Greg. Plus it was great to have my parents able to see where it is that I've been living for the past two years.

My parents headed off to Cardiff yesterday and are on their flight back to the US as I write this! Josh and I have begun preparing to move out of Carmarthen in order to move closer to Swansea, where he now works, and to the place where my new job will be. I will save updates on the move and my new job for when I have more details, as we're still working them out, but it will be a busy few weeks coming up and I am looking forward to all of these changes!

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