Friday, June 18, 2010
We got Whit off safe and sound this morning at 4:30. She’s headed back to the states. We slept for a little while after walking her to the taxi station and then we got up to go back to the Eiffel Tower, this time to ride to the top. Unfortunately, it was a bit foggy in Paris this morning, so the view from the top was not as grand as I had hoped, but it was still awesome. We took many pictures.
And then we descended and headed off to Montmartre, the artist district, to see the Sacre Couer, a church on the top of a hill. This is the area where Picasso lived during his Rose Period. We arrived at the base of the hill and were accosted by men about whom I had fortunately been forewarned. They slip string around your finger and weave you a friendship ring before you can say no, and then they charge you for it. I almost got caught, but I pulled free and kept climbing the hill. It was kinda a scary experience – they were really pushy. But I’m fine. We went up to the Sacre Couer and went inside – it’s absolutely gorgeous. It still baffles me that all of these churches and temples are open to the public to just come in whenever. And most of them are still functioning churches – they have services and everything, right along with the tourists. That’s totally a foreign concept to me, since LDS temples are definitely open to the general public and require an ecclesiastical recommend to get inside. It’s very interesting.
After the Sacre Couer we went back towards Notre Dame to grab a Panini from our Panini friend (he gave us free crepes again – yay!) and meet up with a free walking tour group. We walked all over Paris with them and got bits of history along the way. It was really fun – our tour guide was a riot. She had far too much energy ha ha but that’s a good thing for a tour guide I think (see picture at left). After the tour we hunted for souvenirs and dinner. I bought a French beret – a real French beret! Woo! Unfortunately, by the time we had found a place for dinner and rushed over the the Musee d’Orsay it was closed. This was the museum I was most looking forward to – it’s full of impressionist art, like Van Gogh, Monet, Degas, etc. – all my favorites. Bummer!
But since it was closed we went to the Louvre. It’s kind of amazing when you can just pop on over to the Louvre. Amazing! So we visited Mona Lisa again. She’s doing well. A little bored, but good J We returned to the hotel and I tried to rearrange my clothes and stuff so they were under the weight limit. We’ll see if it worked tomorrow. It probably didn’t.