About 10 years ago I got a wild hair one year, and we went to Paris for Christmas. It was a wonderful experience. I cashed in Delta frequent flyer miles, for seats on Air France, and booked a Best Western about 3 blocks west of the Eiffel Tower. For out of pocket costs, it didn't cost much more then the two of us flying to Florida, renting a car and staying in a hotel the year before. It was very low key and low stress. Paris is a little like Rome, don't try to control it, don't expect it to work as promised, just go with the flow, and out-pout the locals and you will do fine. I have been trying on and off since high school to learn French, it was at it's best for this trip. One of my favorite stories is buying a metro pass, I succeeded in my elementary French at making the purchase from a not to patient ticket agent in the station nearest to our hotel. Then Jay stepped up, you could see her bracing for yet another foreigner who barely speaks the language, and in perfectly accented French he simply said, "I'll have the same." He speaks French, I try, but he let me take the lead and stretch my limits. Isn't that part of what travel is about, stretching our limits and expanding our understanding of the world?