This was the third time I had to enter France to enter Europe. I had no choice but to stay at the airport for 8 hours or book a hotel and go to the city. I had no friends in Paris to go to their house. So, I decided to stay overnight in Paris. I booked a hotel on the Champs-Élysées at a very low price, it was very strange to me how a hotel in this area could offer such a price.
I got a subway ticket and went to the nearest station, the subway passed the station and I had to get off at the next station. This was the third time I had to enter France to enter Europe. I had no choice but to stay at the airport for 8 hours or book a hotel and go to the city. I had no friends in Paris to go to their house. So, I decided to stay overnight in Paris. I booked a hotel on the Champs-Élysées at a very low price; it was very strange how a hotel in this area could offer such a price.
I got a subway ticket and went to the nearest station, the subway passed the station, and I had to get off at the next station. After inquiring, I found out that the station was closed for some reason. So I had to walk from Shuttle Station to Ark. The route was beautiful and attractive and made the 50 minutes walking easy for me.
I started walking towards the hotel. After walking for a while, I noticed that the police had blocked some paths near the Louvre Museum. This was not the first time I had seen the police near the Louvre, so I changed lanes and continued on the side street.
The further I went, There were more police and guard cars. I got to a point where it was no longer possible to change direction, so I approached the armored vehicles blocking the way and asked. In weak English, the young officer said that there was a demonstration near the arch and that you could not enter. I showed him the address and confirmation of the hotel. He thought for a while, and after checking my backpack, he allowed me to enter the area.
I never thought the protests would be like this, after a while I could smell the smoke, several tires were burning in the middle of the Champs Elysees. I crossed the street. I tried to walk along the side streets. As time went on, the number of security forces increased, and once in a while, they stopped me and asked questions when they made sure that I was a tourist, they kindly helped me find the safest route.
Since I did not have a SIM card, I could only estimate the route. I had walked for about 2 hours and due to the blockage of the main routes, I had another hour ahead. Little by little, the sound of explosions could be heard in the distance, the smell of smoke increased, and the number of people on the streets diminished. Suddenly, the sound of a huge explosion near me shocked me, all the security forces got ready, put on masks and hid behind their shields.
I stared at the scene, some of the demonstrators took to the streets with loud noises, some of them setting fire to shops and breaking some windows with stones, the sound of police sirens being heard all the time, and occasionally an ambulance or fire truck from The street was passing.
Fear gripped me; I tried to find an alternative way; it even occurred to me several times to skip this hotel and get away from the area, But curiosity and the experience of new events prevented me from returning. I continued on my way, I felt my eyes were burning, a little later involuntarily tears were flowing from my eyes and a pungent odor blocked my breathing. I looked at the map, How much I went, the road did not end, and now it was even harder to move around with these tear gas. I could see the fire everywhere, and The sound of a shops window shattering made me even more frightened
The hotel was in the back alley of the main protest site. I walked to the hotel and ignored what was happening around me. When I arrived in front of the hotel, I noticed that the hotel was closed. A man was checking me through the hotel window, got up from his seat, asked behind the glass door if I had a reservation, and then asked my name. After checking, he opened the door, and I went in, breathing easily. As I got here safe and sound, it was enough. I asked the hotel manager a little, and then I went to my room. The night before, I had not slept, and after 4 hours of walking, I felt so tired that I went to bed immediately.
I woke up several times by the sound of explosions and screams and fell asleep again. It was about 6 pm, the sound of the blast had subsided.
In the middle of the night, only scattered noises and occasionally explosions or screams are heard.
I got up on the bed and picked up my phone, started searching and said to myself, "This is one of the consequences of not seeing the news."
I left the room and went to the lobby, I asked the hotel manager how long will the demonstration last? He said until nightfall. I asked, does that mean there is no demonstration tomorrow? He said no normally. I went back to the room and took a bath. My legs ached and I still felt tired from flying and insomnia.
I was feeling hungry, I left the hotel after taking a shower to eat something, the hotel manager asked me to take care of myself and not to get too far from the hotel, I shook my head and thanked him.
The next day everything calmed down; I left the hotel, the view of the luxury shops on the Champs Elysees, whose windows were now broken and whose doors were on fire, could be seen everywhere. Luckily the subway was open, I decided to go to the airport a little earlier, so I packed up and left the hotel to the airport.