Paris

Trip Start May 02, 2006
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Trip End Mar 02, 2007


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Monday, May 22, 2006

Ahhh Paris.. The city of love and the perfect stop for the honeymooners. You know, I never get sick of Paris, I think I could go there a million times and always be able to lose myself in the city and it's people. I don't care that the Parisiennes may come across as arrogant, I love them for it. Paris wouldn't be the same without the locals blowing smoke in your face just as you're about to tuck into a jambon and fromage baguette at your local cafe or walking along the street admiring the architecture and stepping in some chien-merde that seems to be an ever present hazard to daydreamers such as ourselves. Anyway I could go on and on but fortunately for you I wont.

We had booked into a lovely little pension right on top of Notre Dame and to be honest we weren't expecting great things but we were very pleasantly surprised. The room was interestingly decorated and as you can see from the photos our view was priceless. Great stuff all around.

We had dual reasons to be excited about being in Paris, one the city itself and two the fact that two very good friends and their daughter would be joining us for the weekend. Yes, if you checked the photos first and spotted Rich, Jules and Zoe you would already know by now. R,J&Z are currently living in Luxembourg so it was only a short(ish) drive for them to come and play for a 3 day weekend.

Given Kat and I have been to Paris before and visited most of the big attractions (Le Louvre, Climbed Le Toure Eiffel, Strolled the Champs-Elysees etc) we decided on getting out to the Palias Versailles before Rich and Jules arrived. As you can no doubt see from the photos (in fact most of our photos from the cities we've visited) we weren't blessed with the greatest weather but we we're kinda used to it by that stage. So, to the Palace, all I'll say is I can understand why the undernourished french peasants decided to revolt back in 1789. From the grounds to the palace it's enormous and probably for the time a massive waste of the people's taxes but then if good old Louis XIV hadn't have done it we wouldn't be able to fork out $50 each for the privledge of visiting it today.

There's about 4 billion rooms with secret passages running from upstairs apartments (king and queen) to downstairs (the children and relatives). I quite liked that they were so lazy that they had those little boxes to be carried around the place in. It's good to be the King, Queen and anyone else related to them. It was also interesting to note that the King would receive people in his room while he was in bed. They had to stand behind the rail (pictured) and talk to him, I think this is how I shall receive all my guests from this point forward.

The palace was also home to Napoleon and there's a few rooms plastered with enormous pictures of the little man. One also has a enormous phallus that was 'erected' in honour of France conquering Austria somewhere along the line.

After wandering through the great halls and rooms of the palace you make your way out into the gardens which are apparently magnificent but unfortunately we were unable to get around to see them due to a gale kicking off just as we exited the palace. Nevermind we were buggered by then anyway and Rich and Jules were due to arrive so it was time to head back into Paris.

We made it back into to town just in time to catch R,J&Z and have a leasurely stroll around Isle de St Louis and have a couple if quiet beers and smoke a ciggie in a restaurant much to no-ones disgust. It sort of feels naughty smoking in a cafe or restaurant after a decade of smoking bans in Australia but it was sort of liberating at the same time. Finish meal, sip beer and light up a durrie. Love it.

The next day was a mish mash of the Musee De Orsay and the Catacombs. My love of Zombies is well known among some of you so the Catacombs was must see. I mean seriously, Picasso and Monet vs' a thousands of skulls and bones 60 meters underground, you be the judge with which is more interesting. So the M 'O is fairly impressive, a lovely old Railway station transformed into an art museum with an eclectic collection of the world's finest artists but and it's a big but the catacombs is eerily lit, seeping water and is full of bones.

Rich, Jules and I loved it (Zoe slept through it), you creep along a 1.6km rocky path underneath the Paris streets with dead people surrounding you. Kat of course hated it and ran through it in record time according to the attendant but for me it was like a leisurely stroll through a sunny garden admiring the plant and birdlife. The photos don't really do it justice so visit it if you get the chance.

Our final day we strolled up the Champs Elysees, wandered over to the Eiffel Tower and just made the most of the city of love. We both agreed that it's a city that never loses it's magic no matter how many times you visit. To have been able to visit it on our honeymoon and meet up with great friends was an absolute blessing we'll never forget.

Hope all is well.

Nath and Kat.
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