Paris Revisited

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November 13th 2011
Published: November 13th 2011
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Once again I have been flaky about posting. Sorry everyone. So I still haven't told you about all my adventures during Fall Break. So we had 10 days off of school and I decided to go to Paris and London.

In Paris I stayed the first three nights with Liv and her finance, Raphael. It was so delightful. I hadn't seen her in three years and it was nice to have them help suggest adventures to have. On Saturday I walked to Parc Buttes Chaumont which is a large park tucked away. I walked along a river and then climbed up a hill where there was a temple at the top. There was a great view and it was surreal to be in such a gorgeous park, in a temple, in Paris. Then I ventured off and visited the Belleville quartier and ended up at Cimetiere du Pere LaChaise and saw the resting places of many a famous people--Chopin, Guillame Apollinaire, Edith Piaf, Honore Balzac, Moliere, Jim Morrison, Marcel Proust, and Oscar Wilde. Then I hopped on the metro to Place de la Concorde and enjoyed the view of le Louvre and le Champs Elysees. Then I visited L'Orangerie, a quaint museum filled with so many great works of art, particularly Monet's Waterlilies. It was breathtaking. Then I tried to go to Musee d'Orsay, but the museum was striking, so it was closed for the week. So I wondered to the Sorbonne and the Pantheon and strolled down Boulevard St. Germain. I ended up at Jardin des Plantes where I tried to go to the zoo, but it was about to close, so I enjoyed reading some Harry Potter in the park instead. Then I came home and enjoyed dinner and a movie with Liv and Raphael.

Sunday: I watched the Rugby World Cup Finals (France vs. New Zealand) with Raphael. Then we all went to the market, which was fantastic. It was crowded, loud and smelly--I loved it! We walked home along the Seine and then I met up with Francine (my French professor from St. Kate's) and her husband and son, Frankie at the Luxembourg Gardens. Frankie, Francine and I enjoyed a visit to the Cleunay Museum which is dedicated to history of the Middle Ages. It's in an old castle which the Romans once occupied so at one point we were in these giant Roman baths in the middle of Paris. So great. Then I was charged with occupying Frankie so we made space crafts, shot bad guys and colored some pretty great pictures. Then we all had dinner together and conversed the night away.

Monday: I went to le Louvre once it opened and sort of beat the crowd. I was astounded to be standing in front of all these works of art that I had read about and some that I had even studied and wrote about. I always tend to think that art is "above" me and that I never understand it, but standing amongst all that art I was truly touched and inspired. Then I spend the day with Francine and the guys again. We met at this great park that used to be an area used by the Romans. Once again, it was this fabulous, open space almost hidden away by the building of Paris. Then we walked all around, walked through l'Hotel des Invalides and boy oh boy did Frankie love all the cannons! Then we ended up at l'Arc de Triomphe and walked down the crowded Champs Elysees. Then we hung out at another tucked away spot behind the Palace Royale where a bunch of kids were playing, which was fun. Then we kept walking and Francine, who grew up in Paris, showed me some of the old buildings she lived in and we even passed by her old high school by chance. Lastly, we ended up at the huge playground in front of this huge church. It was so pretty. So I played with Frankie at this huge playground in the middle of Paris. Surreal.

Tuesday: I visited Sacre Coeur, the enormous church on Montmatre. It was once again incredible. Then I went to the park and read because it was sunny out and I was simply happy to sit in the sun. Then I met up with the gang again and we mostly walked around and enjoyed the lovely weather. Of course there were more shenanigans with Frankie. I love hanging out with a 4 year old and using my imagination again. After I said goodbye to them I went to the Eiffel Tower to see it light up. It really was majestic.

Wednesday: Started my day by going to a service at Sacre Coeur. It was pretty amazing to go to a service in French, in this huge church in Paris. If I recall correctly, the sermon was really good. After church I mostly hung out in the park again, reading. I had time to kill before my train to London, so I saw "Les Marches du Pouvoir" which is the "Ides of March." It was in English with French subtitles and it was cool to see that I knew that the translations were really not the same at all. However, it's the same for English subtitles on French films. After the movie, I hopped on a train to London...

To be continued...


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