mardi 30 août 2011


Yesterday...I!!!  There aren't enough exclamation points in the world for me to express my happiness.  It was everything I imagined, and, considering that I've spent a lot of time building up Paris in my imagination, it's pretty impressive that it lived up to my expectations.  It was like being in a book or a movie. I knew that Paris had an extremely high concentration of beautiful historical landmarks, but the sheer amount was still staggering, when I saw it first hand...You could stand on the oldest bridge in Paris, built by Henri IV, and see the Eiffel Tower, the Conciergerie (which started as a palace, became the prison where Marie Antoinette spent her last few months, and is now a museum), the oldest public clock in Paris (600 years old, still working), the Palais Conti (former national mint), and Notre Dame de Paris, all at the same time.  And that's just what you could see from one spot, in the immediate area.  And even if a building wasn't historical or breathtakingly magnificent, everything was at least beautiful.  Even the brickwork on the streets was in a fish-scale pattern instead of just straight rows.  It's still hard for me to wrap my mind around the sheer volume of beauty.

Anyway, here's some chronologically placed pictures of my day:
The first big landmark I saw was the Eiffel Tower.  We rode the RER train into Paris, and in the area approaching Paris, the train is in a tunnel.  So we come out of this tunnel and suddenly, we're in Paris and THERE'S THE EIFFEL TOWER.  Just like that.  Then the first thing we did after getting off the train was go climb the tower.  I didn't get all the way up to the top, but I did get to the third level.  It was pretty amazing- you can see all of Paris.

Including this...

Me, I think on the second level.
From the (almost) top of the Eiffel tower, looking down...This one's for you, Sean.

After the Eiffel Tower, we walked around a bit.  This statue is one of many in the vicinity of the Eiffel Tower.

Me again.  Just to prove I was there ;)

Next, we made our way to Notre Dame de Paris, which was absolutely awe-inspiring.  It was massive, extremely old, and you could spend a lifetime just observing the sculpture on the exterior.  Just outside of this picture there was a very old statue of Charlemagne that looked like it belonged in Gondor.

If the outside of the church was amazing, the inside could only be described as magnifique.  The size itself was mind blowing.  This church is so big, it contains the main church and then at least a dozen chapels on the side.  Art covered everything, and the whole place was lit only by the famous stained glass windows and saint's candles you could light for a donation of 2-5 euro.  I didn't light a candle, but I did buy a Notre Dame medal for 2 euro.  This church is one of the most awe inspiring things I have seen in my life.   

Aaaaand...I saw this, and I was gone.  As my host dad said, "You saw "Shakespeare" and zip!"  I ran towards this store like my life depended on it.  This is a very beautiful bookstore, full of antiquarian and/or English language books.  Of course, the books are very expensive because they are in English, but it was very fun to look.

A bridge we saw while walking along.  I don't have pictures of this, but one of my favorite things we encountered while walking along was the booksellers selling mostly antiquarian books out of green metal stands on the sidewalk.  It was very classic Parisian. 

Next we went on one of the bateaux mouches, the boats that go on tours up and down the Seine showing passengers notable sites along the way.  The guide would repeat everything in French and English, so I was able to understand, and I learned some very interesting things.  We went under some of the most beautiful bridges in the world, each with a different mythology attached to it which the guide would explain.  Here I am with my host dad, passing by the Eiffel tower.
 These pictures show just a sample of the incredible things I saw while in Paris.  And, while I spent the whole day there, there is still so much more I need to see!  I hope to have the opportunity to visit this amazing (and, luckily, nearby) city many more times.  Merci beaucoup to Mike and Alizee, my host father and sister, for giving me an amazing experience of Paris.  Also, to give credit where credit is due, many of these pictures where taken by Alizee, who is an amazing photographer.  I took my own pictures, but hers are so much better I decided to use them :)

Thanks for reading!


1 commentaire:

  1. I love reading your blog. You look so grown up and beautiful. I'm glad you're having a wonderful time and I envy your time in France.