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Showing posts from April, 2008

Death and Chocolaate

Monday was magnificent. We walked from our hotel to the Hotel des Invalides, an impressive military hospital and museum surrounded by a waterless moat and rows of cannons. Inside the complex was the Dome Church which contains the tomb of Napoleon. It was an imposing sight, as he was buried in six coffins, each inside the next, so that the final one is enormous. From there we walked towards the Eiffel Tower, which became more beautiful with each step. It was magnificent; so towering and impressive in its construction. I found it breathtaking. I did make the climb to the top, pausing on the first tier to mail some post cards (yes, there is a post office up there). The view was incredible which made the climb all the more satisfying. We celebrated this victory by dining in Montmartre at a charming restaurant founded in 1793. 
Today we began the day with breakfast on the Rue Mouffetard - one of the oldest in the city. We enjoyed our coffee while watching the vendors set up shop, laying out t…

Art & Opera

Yesterday we hit (nearly) all of the main tourist sights. We walked from our hotel to the Louvre - a beautiful walk. We stood in line for no more than ten minutes and were inside. The museum is, of course, overwhelming with all there is to see, so we picked a couple of areas of interest and saw the "essential" sights. We saw the Mona Lisa. I have never been a big fan of the picture, but i thought that it may be one of those works of art that one must see in person to 'get' it. I still don't. No wave of transformation swept over us. We both agreed that there were more impressive works to behold at the Louvre. Napoleon's apartments were very impressive and the Dying Slave is a masterpiece of homoerotic expression in marble. From the Louvre, we strolled through the Tuilleries Gardens, watched the little boats in the fountains and a painter capturing the scene. We continued past the obelisk down the Champs Elysees where Betty Lou bought a bottle of perfume. Finally we…

Montmartre by Metro

Today we took the metro to Montmartre, and walked in the footsteps of the French bohemian elite. Betty Lou was delighted with the charming village atmosphere and oodles of artists displaying their wares. We wandered through the narrow passageways past the quaint and the touristy alike. In one of the churches we visited we walked in on a wedding! (I know, yesterday it was a funeral...tomorrow we are sure to stumble upon a baptism.) We then visited the Sacré Coeur and took a stroll through the delightfully seedy Pigalle area, past the "Sexodrome" and other peepshow venues.
Another short Metro ride whisked us to the Père Lachaise cemetery. We meandered through the grounds in search of a few special graves: Jim Morrison, Oscar Wilde, Chopin, and Proust. It was no easy feat, but we managed to locate them all. Jim Morrison's grave was especially impressive, due to the throngs of pilgrims leaving flowers and pouring liquor on his grave.



After that we visited the bustling Marais di…

April in Paris

Greeting from Paris!


We arrived at 3:30 (paris time) on Thursday after an uneventful flight. Our lodgings: L'Hotel des Grandes Ecoles is wonderful. It is three buildings surrounding a medieval courtyard and garden, which is filled with birdsong. We are one of the lucky few whose room opens directly onto the garden. Our room is small and charming and very girly. We are completely ensconced in pale blue toile; curtains, walls...the works (except for our bedspread while is a massive, white crocheted doily. Last night we wandered around in the pouring rain (yes, rain - stop your snickering right now though, because today it is 23 degrees and sunny) and ate dinner at a Tibetan restaurant, which was delcious. We were too tired for much conversation, but fortunately there was a table  of lively American Entymologists nearby who kept us amused with tales of searching for rare insects in Alabama. Today we visited the Pantheon, which holds a crypt containing the remains of famous French person…

April in Paris

Greeting from Paris! We arrived at 3:30 (paris time) on Thursday after an uneventful flight. Our lodgings: L'Hotel des Grandes Ecoles is wonderful. It is three buildings surrounding a medieval courtyard and garden, which is filled with birdsong. We are one of the lucky few whose room opens directly onto the garden. Our room is small and charming and very girly. We are completely ensconced in pale blue toile; curtains, walls...the works (except for our bedspread while is a massive, white crocheted doily. Last night we wandered around in the pouring rain (yes, rain - stop your snickering right now though, because today it is 23 degrees and sunny) and ate dinner at a Tibetan restaurant, which was delcious. We were too tired for much conversation, but fortunately there was a table  of lively American Entymologists nearby who kept us amused with tales of searching for rare insects in Alabama. Today we visited the Pantheon, which holds a crypt containing the remains of famous French person…

Bon Voyage

Greetings, all. Today is the day of our greatly anticipated journey to Paris. Both Betty-Lou and I are sorely in need of a vacation (I to recover from the assault of law school and Betty-Lou to escape the chaos of home renovations - Thank you to Ron for  keeping watch at home.)  Finally I will have the opportunity to discover how well my eight years of French education has served me. Betty-Lou is already sporting her beret and has grand plans to develop a taste for wine and Gauoilses. Between the two of us, i believe we have six guidebooks, so we are well prepared. We do plan to chronicle our (mis)adventures, so check in for updates. Bon Voyage!
Dale & Betty-Lou
(wandering norths)