I laid in bed tonight, as my baby drifted off to sleep listening to the rain beat on the rooftops of Paris and for a moment I missed the rain. I missed the way it washes the streets clean and makes everything green. It was a moment of serenity in the midst of a week filled with highs and lows – one low being the rain itself, which has been persistent and unkind to us the whole time we have been here. It was a moment in stark contrast to this afternoon when we hustled into any alcove we could find watching as umbrellas flip inside out and unsuspecting tourists in their standard issue ponchos.
If you missed the first post on Paris you can find it here.
Saturday, we began our Hop On, Hop Off tour starting at the Louvre and going straight to Notre Dame.
In reality, I probably would not have done the tour but my mom and her husband found it a very good way to get around Paris. I, on the other hand prefer the metro. That being said, Paris falls short in the department of getting around with kids compared to London. The turnstiles don’t allow for strollers and not all stations have a gate for easier access. There are very few escalators and strictly no elevators. Like-wise some of the exists were not even big enough to fit our small umbrella stroller.
But enough about transportation. Notre Dame was just as breathtaking as I remembered and this time I actually went inside. The line up was a bit intimidating for someone who detests queues but it moved quickly allowing hoards of people into the former home of Quasimodo.
We took it as fast as the kids wanted and when they were done, we were also well satisfied and set out to find coffee in Saint-Germaine, just south of the church.
After meeting back up with the family, we continued onto Musée D’Orsay. This is by far, is my favourite museum in Paris. Since I had just been in December I spent most of my time taking in their new exhibition of Degas and the Nude. I found it amazingly breath-taking: the way he tried different techniques to best capture the human body. He spent sometime on woman in daily life, getting in and out of the tub, combing their hair and washing, there was a section exhibiting his portrayal of the exploitation of women in brothels as well as the women of New Orleans during the American Civil war.
As the others finished taking in the works of Van Gogh, Degas and Monet Jakob and I sat and worked on his Journal. He wrote, Today, I am going to see the Eiffel Tower: from the moment we arrived in Paris, Jakob was determined to see the Eiffel Tower. I had prepped him for our trip by taking a book out from the library on France and knew that it was the thing to see in Paris. So, instead of following my original, carefully mapped out itinerary, we decided to satisfy my boy’s agenda, especially since the sun was trying to peak through.
The bus then took us around past the Opera, Trocadero and the Grand Palais which is where we got off, because it was a really slow way to get around and we felt time could be better spent walking over the River through the 7th to the Eiffel Tower.
And I am happy to report that the Eiffel Tower was all that he had hoped it would be, in fact, it was better, because there was a playground….WITH A SAND PIT!!! A little boy’s dream…and from everyday forward Jakob’s journal records that he saw the Eiffel Tower.
|I just kept thinking how freaking awesome is it that my kids are playing at the bottom of the Eiffel Tower!!|
After the kids had a good play, we walked over to the Champ-Élysées to find some dinner at an Italian restaurant of all places, then our weary party made our way home.