Thursday, May 16, 2013

Paris the Beautiful

After a good night's sleep, we took a lovely walking tour of Historic Paris, went up the Eiffel Tower with Ben, our adorable tour guide. He is an English, French History major so told us lots of interesting French stories and gave us an easy way to remember the King Louis'. We went back out after dinner to see the Eiffel Tower sparkle at 11:00 PM. We feel surprisingly safe even at that hour which speaks well of the French people.

Spring is just starting to spring here so it is a little bit chilly, but sunny which is perfect for all the walking we are doing. We are getting pretty good at navigating the Metro which provides excellent people watching! My favorite was a blind man with his seeing eye dog. Paris has the most complicated Metro so the courage he must possess to navigate it with his canine helper is nothing short of amazing. I'm also intrigued by the French language that is so beautiful to listen to and there's nothing cuter than small children speaking French! My French consists of Merci, Bonjour and my new word, Bon Soir which means good evening.

The French have definitely mastered the are of lingering. They love to sit and chat while sipping on wine or coffee and not just women, men too! The cafes are jam packed at all hours of the day and night with chatty happy people. I'm not sure when they work. We tried it out and sitting in a café in the middle of the afternoon sipping tea since I don't like coffee was slightly guilt inducing, but I got over it! Fast food places are noticeable absent here but are replaced by creperies and pasteries on every corner. They love carbs here and I think the reason they are not over weight is because of all the walking and the smoking they do that is still in vogue here.

Today we went to The Louvre, saw the Arc de Triomphe and walked down the huge Avenue des Champs des' Elysees. There is beauty everywhere you look from trees lining the streets to the amazing architecture of Notre Dame. We were there for the twelve o'clock mass so got to hear the bells ringing and the organ playing while the chorus sang. I almost wish I was Catholic so I could've taken communion! This year marks the 850 anniversary of the Cathedral which is hard to believe.

Tomorrow it's renting a car and on to Normandy.

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