tardi 13 juin 2006

Notre Dame
Notre Dame, originally uploaded by m!les.

Awoke and had scrumptuous chocolate bread for breakfast (le petit déjeuner). Was a bit tired. The room Bryce and I share is quite a bit different. It is a tiny, no-bath-but-a-sink flat for university students. And it was hot (chaud). So, we stayed up and talked and voyeured. We peered into the windows of other Parisians, finding little interesting, and giving nicknames to the heavy hitters. We sat upon our large window ledge and hung our legs outside where there was a noticeable 10 degree dip in temperature. Finally at 12:30 or so we fell asleep in the heat.

After breakfast, which I really liked (a flaky croissant bread with just enough chocolate inside), we prepared for our day.

Our first event was to change money near the Notre Dame. But first, while at home, we took the red tour bus (Les Cars Rouge) which allowed an audio tour and a two day pass on one ticket. Thus we travelled to Notre Dame.

Notre Dame, if you don’t know, is a beautiful cathedral, and I did a report (or a group presentation, rather) on it in ARTH. We went in, and I took a lot of photos. It is just as beautiful on the inside as on the outside. But it was also darker (go figure). We admired a number of things, including the Treasury (photo) and a statue for the Mausoleum of Count Claud (photo). At the end of the walk, I bought three 2 euro medallions for souvenirs. We also had gone to a souvenir shop prior to exchanging money. I got items listed at the front for Holli, Marissa, Adam and Cari. Souvenir shopping will be a little easier since I don’t have to get my immediate family anything (since they’re all here). Score.

Then we went to MacDonald’s. I got a Royal Cheese, frites, et un evian. The food didn’t taste that much different to me. The frites were more bland. Like fries when they sit out too long (or like the fries from Dairy Queen – burn!), but I liked it. After that we took the bus back to l’Opera.

l’Opera, originally uploaded by m!les.

First we went around it, but the front is magnifique. Also, high danger of pickpockets. We went in to find that the Auditorium was closed due to Rehearsal. I didn’t see how this changed plans, but Camille suggested we look at a book of the inside before paying anything. We did that, and Dad, Molly, Brenna, Camille, and myself decided it was worth it. So, we did. We saw some beautiful halls and other various beautiful locations. What I found most fascinating was that it is still used by patrons of the arts. Finally, we convinced Mom, Linds, and Bryce to pay and come in, too. We got a big group photo (photo). Eventually we departed and headed to the bus. We took it all around to the final stop. On our way back we discovered protesters on the Arc. They wanted Russia and China to not support Iran. (This we didn’t truly discover until zooming in on the pictures Brenna took with Mom’s camera). Also, there must have been a military event planned there. SWAT showed up. It was exciting, yet traffic remained the same. One brave cop walked through this throng of vehicles to the arc, using only his outstretched hand to wade the metal onslaught.

But, I get ahead of myself. Before that we visited the biggest store in Paris. It was called Gallerie Lafayette. There were 6 levels for all different tastes, plus levels 0 and -1. There was even a level for sexy clothes. I only bought a water. I wanted to exchange pleasantries with our cashier (feeling a little more confident in French), but when it was discovered that she was conversational, I told Bryce that I’d say “Bonjour”, then turn to him, and start talking in English. And so, the plan was executed masterfully.

Once back at the flat, we had supper. Lasagne, wine, cider, tomato-cheese salad, and chocolate dessert. It was delicious. The cheese was really good. Mathilde came and made sure to bid us all adieu. Then Linds said that Bryce gets a little too embarassed over that.

After that we went to Montmarte (the site of Amelie). We had to take a train (metro) and, while getting on, Bryce got doored. Mom started crying about Hogan. “Overture” may be from the French or Italian word for “opening” or “door”.

Paris, originally uploaded by m!les.

Montmarte is the location of Sacré-CÅ“ur, which means “sacred heart” in English. It is a church, still in use, that has a nice overlook of Paris. We got there and found the building locked, but that was just the square in front (with a merry-go-round). We were allowed into the church at the top of a very large number of stairs, and we saw a beautiful cathedral with vespers in session. No photos or videos, and very quiet.

We then sought a decent view of the Eiffel (none as good as our flat) and then rested in the grass. Dad and Mom left to go walk; Bryce and Lindsey went to go walk; and I can’t help but wish my belle was here with me. Paris is the City of Love, after all, and Lights. And the Dead. Mom discovered that Hogan is okay. His kind do that when in a new situation that is stressful. In other words, his entire breed suffers from pussy-itis. Bryce and Lindsey had a good walk but not a wedding ring walk. Brenna and I saw the city from another vantage point from more below (photo).

Then we headed back. The thing about Montmarte is that it seems to be a kid hangout. It was huge. Once back we took the metro again. Arrived back home safely. Then a walk back to the flat, some glasses of Coke, a quick shower, and this.

Now we see what tomorrow brings.

France – June 06 Flickr set (June 13)

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