10-7-08 Paris, by Jodi
A full day to explore Paris, we start with our pastries and milk that we bought at a local patisserie and start our planned walks. On and off the metro all day, going to the specific neighborhoods we wanted to see. Even though the metro saves tons of time getting around, my butt cheeks are sore from all the stairs and walking, he he!
We decide to go back to Mouffetard St. for lunch. We had noticed a typical, quaint little street filled with cafes earlier in the morning and decided to come back for lunch. We ate at a corner café; we both ordered the Plat du jour, which includes a starter, main meal, and dessert. I ordered French onion soup, beef bougignon with green beans and salad, and crème brulee. Terry ordered the avocado salad, sea bass, rice, green beans and chocolate mousse – excellent meal and filling – just what we needed for the full day of walking.
Back on the metro to Place du Concorde, the beginning of the Champs Elysees and the large Egyptian obelisk the Tour de France riders circle around at the end of the race. We walk the entire length of the Champs all the way to the Arc de Triomphe. The French space industry was holding some sort of convention with displays of space vehicles and equipment, making the Champs crowded and unsightly.
We metro over to the Trocadero district, across the river from Tour Eiffel to see a different view of the Eiffel Tower from the back side (?) across the river, having never seen it like that before. The European Union star logo is plastered on this side – not sure if I like it. I asked a gentleman to take our photo, he was happy too. We cross the river and make the pilgrimage walk under the tower and all around it, taking photo after photo. It always amazes me to actually be standing in the shadow of the Tour Eiffel.
We walk back to our hotel, as I turn just one last time to see it again, as the sun goes down and the lights come on. We finally turn a corner and the buildings hide it from site.
It has been a looong couple of walking days, I feel like we walked all of Paris, and we loved it. We head back to the hotel for the grim task of organizing everything for the pack home. Watch some CNN, hearing the European news blaming the US for all their financial problems snowballing out of control. They suffer the same bank greed problems we do.
Tomorrow we must endure the long 10-hour flight back home to California.
Terry – It was such a wonderful trip visiting all the sites, from WWI to WWII, Medieval to modern architecture, castles, chateaus, monuments, and history. Then to top it off all the wonderful places we stayed, food we ate, and people we met.