Wednesday 18th March
Eclair count: 0 (poor)
We left our bike with Eric’s parents and took the train from Caen to Paris. We arrived around midday and met up with Luca, who owned the apartment we were staying in, which we found through Airbnb (thanks Lorraine and Jason for the recommendation). It was a small apartment but the location was great, only a minute or two away from the Seine and most of the main tourist attractions.
Pizza platter for lunch… Mmmmmm!
Then we went to see the Notre Dame. It were dead nice.
After that we wandered along the Seine and saw that bridge with all the padlocks on it.
They had boarded over the padlocks on the bridge itself because they were making the bridge too heavy and causing problems.
We didn’t add a padlock ourselves as health and safety should always take precedence over romantic gestures.
Then we spent the afternoon at the Musee d’Orsay, which was full of Late Romantic and Impressionist paintings (do I sound like I know what I’m talking about?).
La Meridienne by Van Gogh.
Bassin d’Argenteuil by Monet.
Van Gogh and Monet were my two favourites.
After this it was off to the Eiffel Tower, it was a bit chilly at the top, but the views were not bad!
I’m looking at this and seeing a diagram of ovaries… Just me?
We returned to our apartment with very achy feet, and that was the end of day one.
Thursday 19th March
Eclairs consumed: 1.5 (better)
Depictions of Jesus admired from an artistic perspective: about 10000
After a bit of a lazy morning it was time to get serious about appreciating culture.
We had set aside most of the day to visit the Louvre. We had been warned to purchase online tickets to avoid the queue, but oops! We forgot. We paid with what Rupaul would describe as a 60 minute queueing extravaganza.
Eventually we were in, and met with an overwhelming amount of stuff to look at. I took pictures of the highlights, but there were still a lot of those, so here are the highlights of the highlights.
The crowd around the Mona Lisa (overrated!).
The Venus de Milo (again, I’m not sure why this is more famous than the many other amazing sculptures in the Louvre).
Medieval pair o’ pants.
Man having a bad day.
After 5 hours I was walking dead-eyed through the exhibitions, wondering if the Ancient Egyptians had really needed that many little figuerines. It was time to go!
We walked around the Champs Élysées for a bit and then got some dinner and called it a day.
Friday 20th March
Museums visited: 0
Romantic cobblestoned streets walked along instead: at least 2
During the morning we visited Sacre Coeur (very beautiful).
On the way there we stopped off at a boulangerie for breakfast. I would like to take a moment to tell you about Eric’s eating habits during our visit to Paris. To save a bit of money we had been buying breakfast and dinner from the supermarket during our visit. This is what Eric had chosen so far:
- Wednesday dinner: baguette, ham and cheese
- Thursday breakfast: baguette, ham and cheese
- Thursday dinner: baguette, ham and cheese
- Friday breakfast…
Eric’s eyes roved over the boulangerie counter, what would he choose? So many possibilities!!
In the end he went with baguette, ham and cheese.
At least this time these three ingredients had been put together to form a sandwich. When it had been left to Eric he preferred to take individual alternate bites of each ingredient.
Anyway, enough Eric bashing. Poor Eric. (But honestly – why won’t he eat something other than baguette, ham and cheese??? Is this normal???)
Then we explored the surrounding area of Montmarte, which is full of street artists and feels very French. I had to resist twiddling my imaginary moustache and yelling things like “Tres artistique!” in a gruff French-man voice.
After lunch we got a portrait done. The artist made me look very dewy-eyed with lots of hair. We thought he hadn’t drawn Eric’s likeness all that well as he gave him quite a big nose, but looking at this picture I think he got his expression!Our train was at 7PM so we pootled around a bit, spending some more time in the park outside the Louvre, and taking some tres atmospherique photos of Paris.
Doing my best high kick outside the Moulin Rouge. We stopped by a cafe before going and ordered two chocolat chauds. I winced at the price: 7.20 euros per drink! But oh my God. They basically melted 200gr of chocolate, did something to make it even more delicious and served it to us. Chapeau, Paris, chapeau.
We’re now back in Ouistreham with Eric’s parents until Saturday 28th March, when we will be off down south as fast as we can pedal for some Mediterranean sunshine!