I always wanted to go to the French Open. It seems the most unique of the Grand Slams with its clay courts. So I got up at 2AM one morning in March so I could join the online queue to get us tickets. It was worth it.
We took the metro to the western edge of paris and started walking – joining a throng of others that were making their way there.
We eventually got in after more disorganized and crammed circumstances. But then we made it to our first match. The first match was unimpressive, two unseeded who I thought would be fun to watch slug it out, but it wasn’t that good.
Then we went over to “our court”, Court 1 where we actually had tickets. I’m glad we had tickets to one of the named courts. Otherwise, given that there were 3 named courts I feel like we would have missed out on a lot of the action.
We watched Sharapova play. Again it was good but it was so one sided that it made for a not interesting match. Then we saw John Isner up close which was one of our favorite matches.
We grabbed some lunch. A giant french hot dog for josh and a “sandwhich” deal for me, which is nice because the sandwhich lasts forever. Half now, half later, because it’s just tough bread and ham and cheese, nothing to really spoil or get soggy.
The challenge was staying hydrated. It was really hot, especially if you were in the sun. So it was a challenge to try and stay hydrated when nobody in France has ever heard of a water fountain. If I ever hosted a tennis tournament or something like that I would have huge water fountains with ICE MACHINES in a few places.
Isner was probably our favorite match. It was actually close, 5 sets. We were sitting on the front row. A serve barely missed josh and josh got the ball but had to throw it back to the ball boy. He wanted to keep it so bad!
Then it got a little stormy and we scored two bean bags to watch Rafael Nadal play on the big screen. It was another very one sided match that wasn’t that interesting but it was fun and josh was just enjoying it so much so it was so fun to be there with him. He was definitely soaking in the atmosphere, he was loving it and didn’t want to leave.
So the last match of the day was Serena Williams, but she was playing in the big court. We tried to sneak in and even got tickets from people who were leaving, but finally in the 3rd set they opened the doors to everyone and we all poured in. We got to watch the last 5 games with Serena after she lost the first set and came back to win the 2nd two sets. She was loved by the crowd, they were shouting their love at her. And after the match she spoke to them in French and everyone went crazy. I thought it was a nice touch.
Josh still didn’t want to leave. We did some souvenir shopping. Earlier we had tried the tennis video game and the virtual reality. I was dying, it was like 930 but he still didn’t want to leave. Eventually we walked to the train station and made our way back to Paris where the other crew was barely getting back.
It was a great experience. And Josh has been talking about it non stop since then and asking how many days till Wimbledon and “can we go to Wimbledon every day”?