Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Tour de France: Paris

Oh, Paris... I do love this city, although I have to say this is the first time I've been here since experiencing so much of the rest of France, and my perspective has definitely changed a bit.

Sunday we got in, went to the apartment we rented: a-mazing. It's a cute little studio with kitchen, so we've been able to cook meals (and make coffee!!!), a nice break from meat and cheese and baguette at every meal. Only downside is that it is not in the center, so we have been walking a TON (only took the metro once, from the station to the apartment).

Since Sunday was the first of the month all the museums were free--unfortunately we only got to Paris in time to do one visit, the Centre Pompidou.

Paris is getting all set up for their big national celebration --July 14th, Bastille Day. The Champs-Elysees were lined with French flags (and EU flags), chairs are being set up for the big parade. This pictures is a look down the Avenue towards the Arc de Triomphe:
Monday we walked ALL around the city--literally. From our apartment in the 11th, to the Louvre, down the Tuilleries and the Champs-Elysees to the Arc de Triomphe, down to the Tour Eiffel, along the Seine to the Quartier Latin, to the Luxembourg Gardens, past the Pantheon and the Sorbonne to Notre Dame, through the Marais district, Place des Vosges and back. We guessed about 10 miles. :)

One of my favorite things so far was watching the little kids with their sailboats in the Luxembourg Gardens. So cute! They have little sticks where they poke them away from the sides and then the wind caught their sails and they would be off. So cute!

We also went to Versailles, but since I've already been inside the castle twice I treated myself to a beautiful pastry and then we walked through the huge gardens together. They were kicking people out for some private event, but there is no way they could clear out the garden. So these are probably pictures of Versailles with the fewest people in the background you'll ever see. :)

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