Day 1-2 (so far): Paris

I left off around 4 pm yesterday, so let me fill you in on what else happened yesterday because it was kind of a lot! I did end up snoozing a bit, and because I was so tired, I think I hallucinated/dreamed a bit which was weird. Anyway, we got cleaned up and decided to go walk around a bit.

We literally walked across the street to go to the Tuileries Garden when it promptly started pouring rain! We’re all glad we brought rain jackets and Mom also had an umbrella. The downpour didn’t last too long, and after that, it was just light rain. But I’ll tell you what, seeing lightning streak across the sky next to the Eiffel Tower was something I won’t soon forget! We walked around a little more, going to the Pont de la Concorde then walked along Quai des Tuileries, which is above the Seine. It was lovely! I took this selfie

Lizzie in foreground with the Seine and Eiffel Tower in background

We walked back through the Tuileries Garden, doing our best to avoid the puddles. We went to Mado, a madeleine shop for Mom to buy some of the cakey cookies, then we stopped to eat at L’Imperial, which is right next to our hotel. We were tired and hungry so we ate there, but it wasn’t great (not even photo-worthy). Still it did the trick. We went back to the room, and Mom was really tired. She was going to take another nap. Sandy & I decided to go back out to explore some more while Mom rested.

We chose to go a block in from Rue de Rivoli to see what we could see. We found the church of Sant Roche which had an adorable alley next to it. From there, we walked toward the Louvre (the Louvre!). We didn’t go in and don’t have plans to on this trip, but oh my goodness, even the outside is amazing – it’s the largest museum in the world! – and used to be the palace until they moved it to Versailles. So it’s immense, grand, ginormous, and all the other adjectives that describe majestic things. Since it had been raining, we were lucky to catch a rainbow over it (see it in the upper right?) Just wow!

The Louvre

We walked back toward the hotel and were able to catch the sunset in the Arc de Triomphe. Another wow!

Sunset in Paris through Arc de Triomphe

When we got back to the hotel, we collected Mom and went to the hotel bar for a nightcap (Kir Royale for Mom and Bailey’s for me and Sandy). What an awesome first day, especially after 10+ hours of travel!

Needless to say, I slept deep and hard, with the exception of when the electricity was turned off. One of the light buttons in the room turns off all electricity in the room is what we discovered! But it didn’t take me any time to go back to sleep.

Day 2

I woke up a bit after 7 am. Sandy was already awake though Mom was still asleep. We leisurely got ourselves ready for the day and went to the hotel breakfast a little after 10 am. It was a nice selection of mini croissants, meats, cheeses, and other breads. It was a great start. There was no rain in the forecast to our delight, so we made our way to the bus stop in the Place de la Concorde to board the TOOT Bus, a hop-on/hop-off bus that goes to 10 different sites around Paris.

The first stop would have been the Champs-Elysees but it was closed for a parade or something (May 8 is Victory in Europe day), so the next stop was Trocadero where we hopped off because that’s one stop to get an amazing view of the Eiffel Tower, which is totally wondrous and definitely something to see. We took many many photos there which was fun, and all the people didn’t even bother me!

Sandy, Mom, and Lizzie with Eiffel Tower in background

We hopped back on the bus and rode for a few stops. The stops were: Eiffel Tower (closer to it than we were), Pont Alexandre III/Les Invalides, Printemps/Galaries Lafayette, Opera Garnier, and the Louvre. We hopped off at the stop after the Louvre, which was Notre Dame. It’s still under reconstruction from the 2019 fire, but it’s still iconic and amazing.

Notre Dame (construction not shown)

There really isn’t much to do except look at it, which is stunning, but we decided to move on. Mom remembered that Shakespeare & Company was nearby, and sure enough, it was only two minutes away! We didn’t go in (there was a line and I’ve seen bookstores), but it was cool. Then we walked a little bit further through a lovely little park/square called Square Rene Viviani and to a corner bistro called Cafe Panis where we had lunch. I had the croque monsieur which was really good. It came with fries and a salad. I also had an Old Fashioned. Mom also had the croque monsieur and a Kir Royale. Sandy had Camembert roti, which was roasted Camembert. It came with crispy onions, potatoes, and bread. She really enjoyed it with her white wine. For dessert, I had crème brûlée, Sandy had a chocolate crepe, and Mom had a chocolate eclair. We were all happy and satisfied!

We walked through the Latin Quarter as we made our way back to the bus stop to hop back on. The last stop before we returned to where we got on was the Musee d’Orsay. Another gigantic, beautiful building. I mean, they’re everywhere! After we got back to Place de la Concorde (which we found out was once called Place de la Revolution where long ago the guillotine was placed – it was in that plaza that Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette were beheaded), we were off the bus and then noticed that the Champs-Elysees had been reopened so the bus could go down it again. The street itself isn’t what we were interested in, but the Arc de Triomphe at the other end of it is. I had gotten a good shot of it yesterday when we were coming in from the airport, but Sandy hadn’t, and I knew she really wanted to. So I said, we could get on the bus again (our tickets are good for all day) but then we’d have to take the whole route again. Mom wasn’t interested in doing that. I was ambivalent, but Sandy liked the idea. So she went back to the bus stop and Mom and I came back to the hotel.

Thus ends this entry. I expect there will be more adventures later this evening. We want to go back out to see the Eiffel Tower sparkle at night. So until next time, au revoir!

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