I either lost or forgot to pack the cord that connects my camera to my laptop, so the only pictures we can post are a few that Steve is taking with his iPhone and sending to me. Bummer. As I started to say in my previous post, we almost forgot about the Eiffel Tower tour that we had booked for our first evening here, Steve remembered just in time for us to make the tour. It was worth the expense of the tickets to skip the line. Our tour guide Sarah was from Galveston, small world. We made it to the top although the ride was a little scary for those of us who don’t like high places. The view was amazing! We ended up taking the stairs down from the second level to the first, and were very grateful to find an elevator to take us down the rest of the way. Today, Wednesday, we started out at Napoleon’s Tomb, located in Les Invalides. The building was beautiful, everything from the marble floors to marble staircase rails were gorgeous. Napoleon’s tomb is a huge sarcophagus, way too big for a short guy. The building also had some of the prettiest stained glass windows I’ve ever seen. Shades of blue and lavender that unfortunately didn’t show up very well in the pictures. Then, we walked thru the WWI and WWII exhibits, also located in Les Invalides. Here I am in front of Napoleon’s tomb. This is as close as you can get to it. Did I mention that there are lots and lots of stairs in Paris?
Next, we took the metro over to Notre Dame. The line to get in was several blocks long, so we decided not to wait, we didn’t want to spend half our day just standing in line. We may try to go back early one morning and see if we can get in. The architecture was beautiful, as are most of the buildings in Paris. We got to see all the gargoyles and flying buttresses Notre Dame is famous for, and we also ran into a few of the Gypsy pick pockets we had read about. A loud “no” from Steve was all it took to get rid of them.
From Notre Dame, we took the metro over to the Louvre. I can’t describe how huge the Louvre is, the building just goes on and on. Our tour guide from the Eiffel tower said that if you spent 4 seconds looking at every piece of art the Louvre has on exhibit, it would take you a month to see them all. We decided to skip going inside, we just took the obligatory pictures of the glass pyramid. From the Louve, we walked down to the Place de la Concorde, an obelisk taken from Egypt in the 1830’s and placed on the sight where the guillotine was located during the French revolution. Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette, along with 1,200 others lost their heads in that spot. Here is Steve in front of the Louvre pyramid.
After all the walking, we were ready for a break and found an sidewalk cafe. The waiter brought us a really tacky menu in English (that’s a warning sign of an over priced place with mediocre food) and when I saw that they were charging more than 18 euro for a coke (thats about $25), we made a quick exit. Just around the corner, we found a much nicer and cheaper place for our lunch break. We are back at our apartment for a little rest before heading back out for the evening. The weather is really warm and really muggy. We wish we had brought shorts and flip flops instead of all the long sleeved shirts. We just happened to walk by the famous Maxim’s restaurant.
Tonight, we are going to check out the Arch de Triumph and wander around a little more. Tomorrow, Steve is off to Samur to see a military museum and I’m not sure what I’ll do yet. Maybe the Galleries Layfayette and the Marais district…