Tuesday, May 29, 2012


Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Everyone took the morning to do what they wanted and then we met in the lobby at 11 am.  We were early so I played with the hotel cat while we waited.  She was also here in 2010 and is queen of the lobby!

We caught the Metro to Rue Cler when Linda and Terry treated us to a light lunch of beer and crepes at our favorite place:  Ulysse…Linda had a chocolate crepe and Cappuccino coffee and the rest of us enjoyed a great Greek beer called Mikos with our cheese and jambon crepes!  A trip to Paris always finds us in Rue Cler for one of Ulysse’s special crepes.  We enjoyed one in April before the friends arrived and again today!
We then took our time walking over towards the Eiffel Tower views from the far end of the Champ de Mars at the Military School for photos of Mr. Eiffel’s beautiful tower.  We slowly walked towards it taking more photos as we walked until we were underneath the towering structure by 12:30 pm.

Before leaving home I had ordered and printed our tickets for a 1:00 pm entry.  We had to wait for ten minutes after we arrived and then they let us in about ten minutes early.  We felt just a bit guilty as the people who did not get their tickets in advance had waited in line for nearly three hours before they could purchase their tickets and enter the elevator.  Once on the upper level we were mixed with everyone and had to queue with everyone for the second elevator that takes you to the top of the tower.  The first elevator is like a funicular…traveling on a slant up the leg of the tower.  It pauses at the first level with the restaurant and then goes to the second level.  

 On the second level you have to change to another elevator that goes directly up the center of the tower.  Right now they are repairing one of the elevators so the number of people who are up in the tower at the same time is cut nearly in half.  It was not nearly as crowded and we didn’t have to wait long in the lines for the other elevators.  It was a very enjoyable experience.  

Yes…the sunshine is beautiful and it is warm but when walking under the trees on the right side of the Seine River we found it very pleasant.   They have been predicting some rain nearly every day but it’s been beautiful.  Not a drop has fallen on us since we arrived!

We ended our journey today at pont de L’Alma to see the golden torch that symbolizes the torch of the Statue of Liberty.  It is three bridges down from the Eiffel Tower on the right bank.  It is officially, a monument to French-American friendship, a copy of the torch of the Statue of Liberty.  But, unofficially, the Princess Diana memorial created by the people.   When Princess Diana died in a car crash in the tunnel directly beneath the monument; people started leaving flowers and written messages to her on and around the torch.  It’s always interesting to see this monument.   For the first time I didn’t see any flowers on the torch for her…but the messages are still written on the concrete walls overlooking the underpass.  

On the Metro…actually we cross the bridge and came home on the RER C; and then an afternoon of packing for our trip tomorrow.

Tonight we’re all meeting our Paris friends for dinner at a wonderful restaurant near the Opera Garnier known as Café de la Paix.  Reservations are for 7:45 pm so it will be a late night and then the alarm goes off at 6 am.  

Our shuttle picks us up at 7 am for the trip to the airport.  Yes, we’ve decided not to do the train.  I’ll add more to this either tonight or after I get home in the USA…depends on access to the Internet after we leave the hotel.

POSTSCRIPT:   It's Wednesday morning, May 30th, and we're sitting at CDG Airport waiting for our flight.  We had 15 minutes free on the wifi and I'm paying for another 30 minutes so that I can update my blog.  See additional photos from last night.

We arrived outside the Cafe de la Paix and met Nicolas...Maeliss was working late and met us at the restaurant...instead of this restaurant he took us walking to see the Place Vendome, filled with the best of jewelry stores and then on to a wonderful favorite restaurant of theirs in the Place Demarche St. Honore.  We sat among the wine bottles and enjoyed three hours of food, wine and good friends.  A wonderful way to end our journey; and a special treat by Nicolas and Maeliss.  Soon we hope that they will come again to the USA so we can repay all the dinners they have given us. 

I hope you've enjoyed sharing our journey for the past two months.  Au Revoir

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