France Trip Day 9-Cooking Class and Farewell Dinner

We were a bit tired waking up this morning.  I had incorrectly stated that we went on a bike ride the day before but it was actually on this day.  Our bike ride was about 20 minutes long and we all were disappointed when it ended.  They have one generic sized bike for everyone to use and then a few smaller ones if there are little kids.  Helmets are also available if you would like to use one.  One Adventure Guide biked in the front of the group and the other in the back of the group.  It was a very safe route and we got off our bikes the one time we had to cross the road.  We got GREAT photos in front of the Eiffel Tower on our bikes but unfortunately they are all on my parent’s cameras and phones.  We also took a group photo in front of the Eiffel Tower before handing the bikes back in and walking to our bus.
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It was a short bus ride to the cooking class where we were split into two groups, one with each guide.  My family and I were in the group which decorated chocolate first and then helped prepare the meal second.  We each got a little circle of chocolate to decorate with edible paint and the chocolate tasted very good.  Each group also got three templates with which they painted a design and it went on a larger piece of chocolate which the group shared.   For the meal, we had a tomato basil tarte tatin as an appetizer, a chicken dish as the main meal, and a little chocolate cake for the dessert (as well as all of the chocolate).  It was fun helping to prepare the meal but it was even better eating it.  This meal was one of my favorite of the trip and they kept bringing more bread to the table!

IMG_2035After the cooking class, we had free time on our own until our farewell dinner at the Louvre.  My family and I walked around the Champs-Élysées purchasing some last minute souvenirs.  My dad and mom went to the Louvre early since my mom had not gone earlier in the trip with us to see the Mona Lisa.  My sister and I stayed at the hotel and met the group in the lobby at the designated time to take the bus to the Louvre.  My sister and I and our neighbor all dressed up for the farewell dinner.

The farewell dinner was good, but sad.  We had met many great people and wished we had more time to get to know them better! We had drinks out on a balcony overlooking the center of the Louvre and then had dinner inside.  IMG_2036The sun was directly on our table and it was pretty hot outside.  They needed blinds on the windows to prevent a few members of our table from the heat!  There was a caricaturist at the dinner as well who drew pictures of the kids first and then did ones for the adults who wanted them.  My favorite part of the dinner was the hot chocolate for dessert.  We got back on the bus and went back to the hotel where we had a final gathering with a surprise from the guides.  IMG_2044The sunset behind the Arc de Triomphe was AMAZING as we got back to the hotel.  This picture does not do it justice and you have to be there to experience it.  The girls from the Junior Adventurers Dinner performed the Camp Rock dance after a little persuasion and then groups started to say goodbye to each other.

IMG_2061The end of the trip is always sad even though it is easier to keep in contact with fellow adventurers with Facebook and social media.  We told our guides we would see them in the morning for our departure and my dad, sister, my neighbor, and I all headed by taxi to the Eiffel Tower.  We were able to see the last few seconds of the sparkling of the Eiffel Tower at 10pm.  It was really neat.   On our last night we finally saw the Eiffel Tower lit up in the “City of Lights.”  We packed a little when we got back to the room but fell asleep pretty fast.  Our neighbor slept over in my sister and my room on the pullout couch and we started wishing we could extend our trip for a few days instead of flying home on the following afternoon.

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