April 6, 2008

Museum Pass, Day 1: Gargoyles, Roman Roads, and the Louvre

Posted in Exploring, Travel, Visitors tagged , , , , , , , at 10:23 pm by Lauren

On my parents’ second day in Paris, March 12, we were ready for some major tourist action. We bought a two day museum pass each and prepared to attack the City of Lights. We started close to home at Notre Dame with its 300 and some odd steps. It was a perfect day for a view over the city.

“What should I see in Paris?” All our guests ask that first. And now that we’ve lived here for a bit longer, I can answer: the towers of Notre Dame. The view is great, and the gargoyles are better. I even saw one I hadn’t noticed before.

Afterwards, we made a quick circuit of the interior of the church before remembering (ha) that the entrance to the archeological crypt was out on the plaza. It’s an archeological dig where you can see some of the city’s oldest streets, along with representations of how the city grew outwards from the 3rd century. These pottery fragments and the color sources caught my eye this time.

We walked back to the Marais for lunch at Korcarz, a Jewish bakery and deli on rue de Rosiers. Somehow, we all ordered salmon. Mom had a salmon quiche, Dad a salmon panini, and I had a salmon gratin. I can’t speak to theirs, but mine was amazing. It arrived piping hot at the table, sliced potatoes, salmon pieces, bechamel sauce, and melted cheese.  

We all hopped on the metro together afterwards. As we came off the metro, I pointed my parents in the direction of les Invalides, and I ran to work. They saw Napoleon’s Tomb and the Musee de l’Armee exhibit on Charles de Gaulle there. (The exhibit on Charles de Gaulle was one of their favorite parts of the trip, and they highly recommend it.) They then walked out the front of les Invalides, crossed the river and Place de la Concorde, and explored the Tuilleries.

All the while, I was babysitting. So my parents then took advantage of the evening hours at the Louvre. Afterwards, my dad couldn’t believe they’d only been in there for two hours. I can’t blame him. In fact, now I ask everyone who goes to the Louvre how long they lasted. Everyone says two hours. I only made it two hours myself.

They met us back at the apartment, and we walked into the 5th to wind through the cramped rue de la Huchette for gyro baguettes.

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