Paris by Foot

This is day 4 in Paris, 3 of those we have spent solid sightseeing around the city by foot. I don't know the last time I did so much walking. Each night when we get back to our hotel we do our stretches so we are not so crippled for the next day. How do all the oldies (ie retired folk) cope?

Paris is fabulous. I love it. You never know what you are going to see around the corner. There are so many wonderful churches, all just as nice but obviously not as big as the Notre Dame.
We started Thursday with a vist to the Catacombes. What an amazing place, and our first introdcution to those narrow spiral staircases the Europeans seemed to love so much. Then we walked down to the River Seine, via a stop at a gourmet food market and a lovely little park for lunch. After passing the Musee D'Orsay we wandered along the Seine until we reached the Notre Dame. After visiting a public toilet and not having to pay (we tipped the rest room attendant anyway as she was friendly) we joined the masses of crowds (our first for the day) and went in to check out the mighty cathedral. We then wandered back to our hotel in the Latin Quarter passing by the Sorbonne, the Pantheon and the Luxembourg Gardens on the way. We also stumbled across a children's library which we went into and talked to the staff. They we very friendly and let me take photos inside (see an upcoming issue of the Quill newsletter for more details, hope you like the plug Helen). We went to a restaurant in the Latin Quarter for dinner and had a basic set menu which only set us back 12 euro each before crashing for the night.

On Friday, we decided to catch up with the Mona Lisa so it was off to the Louvre we went. We got there soon after opening so we didn't have to battle the crowds to see the famous painting. The whole Louvre itself is amazing. Obviously we didn't see it all, but we did see part of Napoleon's Apartments, many great sculptures and some crown jewels.

After spending the morning at the Louvre we ventured to the shopping mecca of Galeries Lafayette and more wandering around the streets. And no I didn't buy anything. The teddy bear count is still zero. Dinner was a quiet affair (McDonalds) as we were both so exhausted.

This morning, we woke up to the first blue skies we have seen in Paris and so it was off to the Eiffel Tower. After a quick phonecall home to Aaron's mum Julie to make her jealous, we joined the queues to begin the 40 minute wait to go up the tower. The views were spectacular and I am so glad it was alot warmer up there than my last visit where I saw ice on the tower. Even though I am afriad of heights there was only 1 or 2 moments when I felt scared, the rest of the time I was fine.

Our journey on foot continued to the Arc de Triumph and the Champs Elysee where we sat and had lunch while people watching. Very cool.

I then dragged Aaron into the mega Sephora (make up) store and the Virgin Mega Store where I am happy to say I picked the 2005 Eurovision Song Contest CD. This goes with my 2006 and 2007 ones I already have. I love Eurovision.

After more walking, through the Tuilerie Gardens and back along the Seine to our hotel my legs and feet were had it. Though after half an hour of stretching and having my legs in the air I felt better.

Tonight's dinner was a baguette and apple pastry in the Luxembourg Gardens. Aaron has fallen in love with baguettes so we have been eating them every opportunity we get. Only a week more of this before we move on to sausages and schnitzel in Germany.

Tomorrow we are having a quiet day, sticking to the Latin Quarter as we head down to the Loire Valley on Monday to begin our cycling tour. I can't believe we have only had 6 days of our trip so far. We have seen and done so much and not thought about work at all, well not in any real depth anyway.

Au reviour

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