Do you ever dream of going to Paris? That was my dream from the time I was a small child living in Texas. When some neighbors returned from a trip to Europe and their daughter, who was about my age, talked about what she’d seen, I developed an incurable urge to see the Eiffel Tower. Is it any wonder that I gave Catherine, the heroine of my new release A Borrowed Dream, a similar dream? Admittedly, Catherine doesn’t dream of the Eiffel Tower, because it hadn’t been constructed in 1881, but images of the City of Light fill her dreams.
I’ve been fortunate. My dream came true when I was in college majoring in – what else? – French, and then again when my husband and I lived in Germany compliments of the U.S. Army. Over the years, I’ve had the opportunity to return to Paris several more times and wanted to share ten things I highly recommend you do when you’re in the French capital.
- Of course you won’t want to miss Paris’s iconic landmark, the Eiffel Tower. Built in 1889, the tower itself hasn’t changed over the years, but the surrounding area has. The peace wall, which includes the word “peace” written in 32 languages, and the columns weren’t there the first time I saw it, but they add a modern perspective to the venerable tower.
- If you enjoy museums, be sure to spend some time in the Louvre. But don’t simply admire the famous sculptures and the priceless art hanging on the walls. Take time to look out the windows. As you can see, not all the art is indoors.
- Another museum on my must-see list is the D’Orsay. The Impressionist and other paintings are fabulous, but so too is the building itself, a converted train station.
- The Alexandre III bridge is the most elaborate in the city and so beautiful that the last time I was in Paris, a couple were having their wedding photos taken there. Though most visitors admire it only from street level, take the time to descend a flight of steps to see the intricate carvings “up close and personal.”
- There are easier ways to get to the Sacré Coeur, but I recommend the stairs. Not only will you appreciate the view of the city more when you reach the top, but it’ll give you an idea of just how high Montmartre is.
- Take time to walk around Montmartre. You never can tell what you might find – an artist eager to paint your portrait, a patisserie with to-die-for pastries, or a mime standing in the shadow of the Sacré Coeur.
- As much as I advocate walking, you shouldn’t miss riding the Metro. The cars are more modern than they were when I first visited Paris, but the entrances to the stations retain their delightful Art Nouveau designs.
- Don’t be afraid to explore side streets. I discovered this incredibly ornate doorway on a cul-de-sac within sight of the Eiffel Tower.
- Let your inner child have a play date with a carousel. There are quite a few in Paris, including several close to the Eiffel Tower, but why settle for an ordinary one? Treat yourself to a double-decker ride. This one is near the Sacré Coeur.
- Many of the sights I’ve recommended weren’t in existence when Catherine dreamt of being in Paris, but Notre Dame In her dream, she always finds herself strolling along the Seine as she approaches the cathedral. It’s a peaceful dream until one night when … I won’t spoil the story by telling you what happened that night, but can you blame Catherine for wanting to visit a city with such magnificent views? And imagine her surprise when a stranger who comes to town seems to have borrowed her dream.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this armchair tour of one of my favorite cities. If you’ve been to Paris, what is your favorite part? If you’re still dreaming, did one of my suggestions pique your interest? If so, which one?
Feeling that her dreams of happily ever after have been stolen, Cimarron Creek’s schoolteacher resigns herself to a life without love . . . until a rancher with a secret past comes to town.
Catherine Whitfield is sure that she will never again be able to trust anyone in the medical profession after the town doctor’s excessive bleeding treatments killed her mother. Despite her loneliness and her broken heart, she carries bravely on as Cimarron Creek’s dutiful schoolteacher, resigned to a life without love or family, a life where dreams rarely come true.
Austin Goddard is a newcomer to Cimarron Creek. Posing as a rancher, he fled to Texas to protect his daughter from a dangerous criminal. He’s managed to keep his past as a surgeon a secret. But when Catherine Whitfield captures his heart, he wonders how long he will be able to keep up the charade.
With a deft hand, Amanda Cabot teases out the strands of love, deception, and redemption in this charming tale of dreams deferred and hopes becoming reality.
About Amanda Cabot
Amanda Cabot is the bestselling author of the Texas Dreams series, the Westward Winds series, and Christmas Roses. Her books have been finalists for the ACFW Carol Awards and the Booksellers Best. She lives in Wyoming.