Monday, February 25, 2008

Back from Paris

We had so much fun in Paris. It is a beautiful city. Now I know why people say there is no place better than Paris in the spring. They have gardens everywhere and trees trimmed to look like rectangles. And when they have leaves and flowers I imagine they are very pretty. All of the old buildings (and everything is old) are enormous. The food I did not think was so great. But I am a picky eater. But the pastries were fabulous!!! They have croissants with chocolate in the middle....yummy! The French people are not rude but they are not all the nice either. Everyone (tourists included) wore high heeled boots everywhere. They really like the boots over the jeans look. It seemed a little ridiculous to me. I am all for looking nice, but it seemed a little crazy to climb to the top of the Arc de Triomphe in heels. So I was the only person walking around in Pumas. But I was okay with that. And somehow everywhere we went people knew we were Americans before we even said anything. Then we realized that it was probably because no one but Brian was wearing a baseball hat, probably because they don't play baseball there.......duhh.....Brain enjoyed using all the different setting on our camera we got for Christmas. Thank goodness for digital cameras or else we would have spent a fortune in film. It was cold, but not freezing. Below is everything we did. I broke it down by day mainly for me so I don't forget. So this is a long one.......

Day one: We got into the city around 12 and went to the Champs-Elysees (shomps-eleesay). It is just a long street that is pretty famous and at the very end of it is the Arc de Triomphe.

We decided to go on an open top bus tour around the city. It was nice to see the city and decide what we needed to go back to. Here is our first sighting of the Eiffel Tower. It is funny it is so famous because of all the things to see and do in Paris it was not that great. Don't get me wrong it is definitely worth seeing, but after an hour we had seen it all.
After the tour we climbed to the top of the Arc de Triomphe.
This was the long spiral staircase we had to walk up to get to the top.
Day 2- My Birthday (These pictures are out of order)
The last thing we did on day 2 was go to visit the Eiffel Tower. I think it was great to visit it at night. We took the elevator to the top. Very high. Pretty cool. Once an hour at night all the lights sparkle.

Top of the Tower.

First thing we did on day 2 was go to Les Invalides. It was built by one of the king Louis's to house men injured in battle. Now it is a museum with Napoleon's tomb. The French really love Napoleon!

The building

Then we walked to Musee Rodin (Musee means museum). Neat sculptures.

"The Thinker"

Then we went to Notre-Dame. Cool old church. We got there too late to climb to the top, but I was okay with that because my feet were killing me.

Day 3- We went to the Louvre. It is enormous!!! It was originally one of the many Palaces in Paris and was converted to museum so the building itself is quite beautiful. For those of you who saw The daVinci Code- We were disappointed to realize the end was Hollywood magic. In the end Tom Hank's character discovers where Mary Magdalene's tomb is. He goes to the Louvre and walks on glass and sees the two triangles meet.....anyways as you can see the triangles go can't walk on them.

The triangles meet.

We Saw the Mona Lisa. It was the only painting we could not get next to and the only painting covered by glass. A little disappointing. Brian thinks it is because it is a fake.....And as far as paintings go it is pretty nice, but I don't see why it is the most famous painting in the word.

We also saw the Venus de Milo. We really saw a lot. It took all day to go through the whole (almost) museum. By the end I was sick of looking at religious and naked girl paintings. They really liked their naked girl paintings in the 1600's.

Day four- We got up and took the train to Versailles. After standing in a ridiculous line we got in and there were so many people in there that we could not even move. So we left. We later found out that the workers at Versailles decided to be on strike that day......We went back the next day...So we went back to Paris and went to the Musee d'Orsay. I really liked this museum. It housed all (most) of the impressionist paintings. Really cool!!! I have decided that is my favorite period of paintings.

It was an old train station that was converted into the museum in the 80's. Definitely worth seeing if you are in Paris!

Day 5- Versailles (again) This time it was much better. The workers were not on strike and we paid for a guide. It is really beautiful and once again enormous. But it was the biggest building that we toured. And the gardens are amazing. I imagine they absolutely beautiful when everything is blooming.

The grounds are so big we rented bicycles to see everything.

Lots of beautiful fountains everywhere.

Day six- (Last day) We toured the Opera Palais Garnier. It was the original opera house in Paris. At some point a long time ago they decided it did not have enough seats (2,000) so they built a bigger one. Now it is here the ballet performs. If we ever go back to Paris we are definitely going to see a show at the palais. So beautiful.
Then we went on a cruise on the Seine River. Pretty fun and not as cold as we had anticipated.

We did not know they had a Statue of Liberty too.....theirs is much smaller (Eiffel Tower in the back ground) Brian is very proud of this picture. He decided he liked taking pictures on this trip. It was his goal to take a picture of the Eiffel Tower from every angle. And I think he did it. I was only taking pictures if he was using the video camera. And that was fine with me.

Then we went to the Place de la Concorde. More cool fountains and a really tall 3,000 year old obelisk given to the French by the Egyptians.

Last picture - if you look between our heads there is another picture of the Eiffel Tower. We had a great time. But now it is back to real life.


Natalie said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY CORINNE! I was thinking of you this week as you spent your b-day in Paris. Looks like your trip was a lot of fun- and a lot of walking!

danielle said...

Oh how fun! I am so happy that you guys got to have such a fabulous trip! I love that Brian was representing the Cougs all the way over in Europe.

mandymock said...

It looks like you had a great time! What a way to celebrate your birthday. =) Great pictures too. This trip deserves it own special scrapbook.

EmilynDev said...

Love the pictures! Iam glad you had such a good time. Did you buy anything cool to bring back with you?