Friday, April 24, 2009

Paris - Day Two

The next day we got up pretty early and went to the Louvre as soon as it opened. We bought tickets in the subway station so we got to avoid the line which was VERY nice. The Louvre was my favorite part of the entire trip. Seeing these paintings and artifacts with my very own eyes was absolutely amazing. I never got sick of seeing all the statues in there, they were amazing to me!  I saw actual paintings by Da Vinci!  I saw Egyptian hieroglyphics and huge statues!  The roman statues were also amazing.  I could go on and on for hours, the Louvre was my favorite part of the trip.  It was gorgeous.

After the Louve we took a walk and grabbed some lunch. Food was VERY interesting in Paris. I'm an extremely picky eater so it was tough ordering and finding things I liked.  After our lunch (which was pretty decent chicken and pasta) we walked and just happened upon another cathedral, which was gorgeous but not packed like Notre Dame.  It was "Eglise St. Eustache"  (Jamin calls it cathedral of the mustache because that is what the name sounds like...ah my funny man).

After the cathedral we went back to the hotel for a quick nap, then went back out on the town for the evening. I wanted dinner by the Eiffel so I could see it sparkle at night, but I also wanted to see the Moulin Rouge lit up at night. Problem with this is it is in the red light district of the city, so not a great part of town. We decided to go at dusk before it was too dark. We got off the metro and walked briskly to the Moulin Rouge, snapped some photos then got out of that district quickly. We decided to head to the Eiffel tower.

We found a cute little resturant close to the Eiffel tower. Dinner in Paris is very interesting. First of all, they don't eat until about 8pm (most resturants don't even open until then). Also, they expect you to be there all evening. They are in no hurry to wait on you. It takes at LEAST two hours to eat, get coffee, dessert and the check. This was annoying at first because I'm a fast paced American, but after a while I just got used to it.

Seeing the Eiffel at night was amazing seeing it all lit up, it was gorgeous. There was NO line to go to the top (it was around 11pm by now). I reluctantly agreed to go to the top of the Eiffel with Jamin. For those of you who don't know, I'm PETRIFIED of heights. I get vertigo just on the second floor of the mall. I can't walk close to the railing, I stay near the stores. Seriously. It's pretty bad. So as the elevator begins to lift to the first floor I'm praying, and gripping the rail and I can feel the tears begin to flow (I'm paniced). Jamin looks at me pleedingly not to totally embarass him. I was able to hold it together. You get off that level and it takes you up to another elevator that takes you to the top. This one was more scarry. Everyone was dead silent, feeling the same paranoia that I was. One American said when we got to the top (right before the doors of the elevator open), he said "and now we drop...". Everyone started to laugh because we were all feeling that same feeling you get going on those freefall rides. It broke the silence and the tension.

I'm so glad that I did go to the top though.  I would have regretted it if I didn't.  Being up there wasn't that bad, because there was a cage and netting all around it (I suppose to deter those who think it would be super awesome to take a flying leap off the Eiffel?  I suppose if you were going to off yourself some would find taking a leap off the Eiffel as the way to do it, not me though).  Anyhow, going down wasn't as bad as the tense trip up to the top.

Jamin and I walked back to the metro (at midnight) a little leery of riding the subway that late, but we were fine.  Nobody tried to mug us or pickpocket us. ( If they would have I would have just whacked them with my huge Mary Poppins purse.)  We got back to the hotel safely and yes, watched some more CNN, and a little of The Simpsons dubbed in French.  At this point we would have watched Hannah Montana or Suite Life of Zack and Cody and totally loved it.  Anything in English other than CNN.  (Hubby and I have to watch TV to get sleepy and go to bed in case you were wondering).  Anyhow we somehow got to sleep around one am that night!

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