I have always enjoyed traveling, even if it meant sleeping in a tent when I was younger. I prefer hotels and cruise cabins now, but the motivation is the same...an adventure waiting to happen. Sometimes you will find me traveling with my husband and/or family. Sometimes I will travel alone, and sometimes I will travel with friends. I hope you find it entertaining to keep up to date with me as I explore the world around me. Warning...I like to take pictures of food so don't read if you're hungry. More adventures await...see ya soon...Amy.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Second Day in Paris

The metro sign at our closest stop...St. Germain de Pres

riding the metro

Our first glimpse of Tour Eiffel

The Eiffel Tower is massive!

It was freezing!

The Peace Monument. The word "Peace" is written in every language on the walls and columns

Ecole Militaire

walking the streets

love these seats in the metro


Galleries Lafayette

Galleries Lafayette always has the coolest billboard advertisements

Inside Galleries Lafayette

On the roof of Galleries Lafayette looking out over the city

French Onion Soup, my favorite in France

Danny's favorite, a salad with goat cheese toast

Pierre Herme macarons..also a favorite. These have more filling and more interesting combinations than Laduree. left to right: Plenitude (Chocolate and Caramel), Eden (Peach, Apricot & Saffron), 3 Infiniment Chocolat Porcelana (Pure Origin Venezuela Porcelana Dark Chocolate), Mosaic (Pistachio, Ceylon Cinnamon & Morello Cherries), and Mogador (Milk Chocolate and Passion Fruit)


Looking toward the Louvre

you will find random carousels throughout Paris

The Louvre, way too large to capture in a picture

The Louvre

An art nouveau metro sign

My all time favorite Maison du Chocolat

The luxury and ONLY bathroom in the shopping area under the Louvre

Fleurs along rue de Buci

our supper spot

steak and frites with Bearnaise

Baked chicken

Beef Bourguignon

a favorite Gelato

shaping as many flavors as you want into a flower on the cone

mine was three different kinds of chocolate

Arc du Triomphe lit up on the night tour

The Eiffel Tower lit up just before she started sparkling

The Opera which is now a Ballet House lit up on the night tour
After all of the rain yesterday, it was so nice to wake up to a cloudy but dry sky! We had a wonderful breakfast in our grotto breakfast room downstairs. We had the whole place to ourselves for most of our meal. We have been watching the weather and opted to change our itinerary and start our day with the Eiffel Tower hoping that we could see it without raindrops. We were in luck! Andy and Laurie walked up to the first level of the Eiffel and almost made it to the second, but the wind was getting really bad and it has been very cold these past few days. While they were walking, Danny and I wandered down the Champ de Mars enjoying being together and the fact that it wasn't raining while we walked. After Andy and Laurie came down, we walked back down the Champ de Mars toward Ecole Militaire on our way to our metro station. This also gave Andy and Laurie an opportunity to see the Eiffel Tower from head to toe! We  popped out of the metro at Opera, which no longer is the opera house, but is a ballet house instead. We walked around Opera to Galleries Lafayette, the big department store here in Paris. I had a few things to pick up there and we wanted Andy and Laurie to see the beautiful stained glass dome in the center. Also, we went up to the roof to look out over the city. It's one of my favorite spots to see the Sacre Coeur high up on the hill of Montmartre. We had lunch at a bistro there where I had my yummy favorite, French Onion Soup! Before leaving Galleries Lafayette, we picked up some more macarons from another of my favorites, Pierre Herme. Danny says Laduree is still number one with him. From Galleries Lafayette, we took the metro to Concorde. The rain was coming down again as we walked through Jardin des Tuileries which are the gardens leading up to The Louvre. We were not going into the Louvre on this trip, but Laurie really wanted to see the outside of it. By the time we reached the Louvre, it was raining pretty hard and we couldn't figure out how to get into the shopping mall underneath both for cover and for something else I needed to pick up. We finally figured it out and this was where we had a very interesting experience. In all of the times I have been going there, there has always been one set of bathrooms down there. These bathrooms have always been free as late as my last trip in 2010. Well, now they have become "luxury bathrooms" and they are the ONLY set there!! You not only have to pay 1.5 euros to go in, you have to wait until an attendant brings you to the stall that she has just completely cleaned after the person before you came out. Every stall is cleaned EVERY time someone goes in there! We also got to view "decorator" toilet paper that could be purchased while we waited to go in. On the men's side, Danny said there were stalls, but there were also urinals in plain view of the line of people waiting to get in! It was quite an experience. We waited out the rain a little and went back on the metro to our hotel. Danny got a call from his cousin, Cathy from Limoges, that she was arriving in Paris tonight for business tomorrow and would love to connect with us. Unfortunately, we were not able to make that connection, but it was nice to hear from her. We promised her a visit in Limoges on our next trip. We ate supper at Chez Calde, a bistro down the street that we thought was really good. I would definitely go back there again. After supper, we decided to skip dessert because we had passed Amorino on the way which is a favorite Gelato spot that Danny and I discovered on a trip to Innsbruck, Austria. While we waited in line at Amorino, we started up a conversation with three guys from Kentucky in town on business. Actually Andy has spoken to several people on this trip that were Americans and one set told him that he didn't sound like he was from Louisiana. He thought that was funny. We walked in the rain with our ice cream back to the hotel to wait on an Illuminations tour (a night time tour) of the monuments of Paris. Danny and I had done this on a previous trip and really enjoyed it. Our guide on this trip was Nicholas who was Parisian and gave our tour in English and Portugese since we had some other guests who were from Portugal. Laurie said it was really great for her to get an idea of the expanse of Paris and Andy agreed it would take quite a bit of time to see all of the monuments. Tomorrow is our last day and another full day of sightseeing. Until tomorrow....

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