We had arrived in Paris. My sister had taken one flight, through the US, and I had taken another through Montreal and we arrived at the same time into Charles de Gaulle airport. We hadn’t told our mother that we were on separate flights — she would have likely panicked as my sister had never flown overseas by herself before — but we orchestrated it beautifully when we left so it appeared as though we were together (sorry, mom!)

Since my sister had no experience with International travel, she went ahead through baggage claims, security and customs, while I waited for her at baggage claim. Here she was, already in France, and I was still stuck in airport limbo. After an hour and a call over the loudspeakers, we were finally united. A little bit tired but oh so ready for the adventures ahead.

Our first stop was our hotel – the Paris Hilton (because how can you not, right?) – so we got ourselves out of the airport and to the hotel where we dumped our way-too-heavy backpacks and showered our weary selves. Then, we hit the streets to soak up the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre. I am fairly certain we hit a record for the fastest trip through the Louvre, ever.

After exhausting the streets of Paris, we returned to our hotel and booked our next night in Brussels, Germany. We had no idea what the next three weeks of adventure held but we were ready for it.