Sunday, September 15, 2013

Night Tour of the Eiffel Tower

We awoke to rain!   But the weatherman on the Internet had guaranteed us sunshine by 4 pm today!  By 11 am we were in the Metro in our rain gear headed for the Paris Garnier Opera House.  There we had a marvelous time on a self-guided tour for over an hour.  The girls marveled at the grand belle époque décor and I enjoyed watching the sparkles in their eyes!   

Back out into the rain we attempted to visit something new for me; across the street is a place called the “Paris Story”, an hour long movie about Paris.   Recommended to be the first thing you see about Paris.  But, alas, we were fifteen minutes late and they had closed the doors.  Rather than hang around we raced through ever growing puddles of rainwater towards our faithful Metro that soon took us to the Louvre for another visit.   Our guide…me…screwed up and we got off at the Louvre Rivoli instead of the Palis Royal Musee du Louvre so it was another race through the puddles and raindrops to the entrance.

Our first stop was at the cafeteria just inside of the Richelieu Section for some substance for our hungry bodies; it was after 2 pm.   Long lines and a definite lack of service but we persisted and soon we at the two little tables that Mary secured for us while we foraged for food!  Jane had picked up a cup of chocolate mousse which she shared with all of us; the drop of chocolate on her nose gave us all a chance to have a good laugh!

Relaxed and better able to cope with the real world, we soon headed out into the world of paintings.  First we visited the Dutch Painters in the Richelieu and then over to the Sully for the French Painters.  Our last goals was my request to see a favorite:  Aphrodite known as “Venus de Milo”.  She was on the ground floor in the Denon Section with the Greek and Roman Antiquities. 

It was nearly 5 pm and we had a date at 6:30 pm with a handsome young man…Bonnie’s son-in-law…so we hurried to the interior entrance to the Metro and a fast trip home to rest our tired feet!  Scott Glaser, Bonnie’s son-in-law, is a world traveler for his job; more hours on the road than home.  He was in Warsaw, Poland yesterday and stopped in Paris today to meet and entertain us for the evening.  Little did anyone know that God would open the skies and fill the streets of Paris with buckets of rain!   We’ve found that the weatherman can’t always be trusted to be 100% right all the time.   Just enjoy the results when he is!

So it was back out into the rain at 6:15 pm to meet Scott at the Sud Tower on the Eiffel Tower.  Connecting with text on Jane’s cell phone he located us and led us out from under the tower towards the restaurants in the nearby Rue Cler area.  He’d chosen well and we first stopped for a drink at one of his favorites; he stays in this area often when in Paris on business, and then over to the Le Clos des Gourmets Restaurant for dinner at 7 pm.    Truly a five star gourmet event!   In honor of Mr. Jim I had my first duck in Paris:  Pan fried duck foie gras on a Rosemary skewer, quinoa and apricot compote and a dessert cheese plate.  Yes, the duck is a bit on the fatty side but must admit I enjoyed every bite!
Soon it was 9:15 pm and we had tickets, purchased months ago before the trip began, for a nighttime accent up the Eiffel Tower to see the views at 9:30 pm.  Yes…it was still raining as we bid au revoir to Scott and headed back into the rain with umbrellas and plastic rain ponchos flying behind us as we raced through the streets back to the towers.   

Arrived and walked right in with other “drowned rats” who were there to see the sights of Paris from the top of the Eiffel Tower.  No waiting around until we reached the second elevators on the second floor and then the wait was short.  Soon we were braving the elements on the deck of the top of the tower!   Wind and rain blowing into our faces but what fun we were having!
Back down and the long, wet walk to the Metro but finally we were home just minutes before midnight!  The apartment is full of wet plastic and clothes hanging all around me as I sit here this morning while the others sleep.  It’s 9:30 am…and I’ve enjoyed sharing our story with you.  Since it’s not raining, we may go to Versailles today.  Will decide when they all wake up.    And Scott, if you’re reading this, thank you from the bottom of our hearts for the best dining experience ever in Paris. 

Hope you enjoy the slideshow: 

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