Jessielah!

adventures in awesomeness…

Parks, Pastries, and Courbet

on June 21, 2010

I woke up before the alarm went off and was treated to a magical sight.

What’s this? What’s this? There’s color everywhere. What’s this? There’s white clouds in the air. What’s this? I can’t believe my eyes, I must be dreaming. Wake up Jessie, it isn’t fair… What’s this?

I leaped from the bed and threw open the windows, leaning out into the Parisian sunshine. The bright blue sky, dotted with cotton candy puffs of clouds beamed down upon me. Bonjour Paris!

The plan was to cram in the rest of the museums and monuments today, saving a boat ride alone the Seine and the Eiffel Tower for Saturday. After grabbing coffee (we didn’t know how to say “take away” in French, so we were left with no choice but to go to Starbucks with the rest of the Americans), we headed for Notre Dame.

Robert at Notre Dame. No Quasimodo in sight.

It was enormous, breath-taking, and beautiful. I’m fascinated by the architecture and the carefully detailed sculptures. Magnificent.

Lighting a candle for our loved ones.

We were going to go on the tour, but the queue was incredibly long so we decided to do it on the way back, time permitting.

Next (and most important) pastries. We wandered through the Latin Quarter to St. Germaine where we came across the most delicious patisserie, Gosselin. Since it was lunch time, it was incredibly crowded so there was no time to be worried about how well you spoke french. The words came pouring out. Ordering pastries was a total French experience, more enthralling than Notre Dame. A total rush!

Deux tartlet framboise et un Frazier. Yum!!

I had wanted to see the Pantheon and the Jardin du Luxembourg on our way to the Musee Rodin and Napolean’s Tomb, but Ruby was ready to eat. Luckily she had to pee so I tricked her into seeing the Pantheon and the underground crypts where Voltaire, Rousseau, and Victor Hugo were buried. It was like Humanities all over again. Plus we saw two “matchy-matchy” boys… which gave us the giggles.

Note the alternating navy and white color scheme… down to their shoes!

We hit the gardens next, sitting on the grassy lawn with all of the other Parisians. University students were laughing and frolicking, babies were crawling, and we were eating pastries. It was heaven… just heaven. We could have stayed their all day but unfortunately we had two more museums to hit, plus the Arc de Triomphe before nightfall. Off to Musee Rodin, where we enjoyed the sculptures in the gardens, including “The Thinker” and played around in the restored mansion.

Boom, bang! Fire Power!

We couldn’t locate Napoleon’s Tomb, but we did find another park. Pastry break!  The Frazier was messy but fabulous. I was in love. We sat around with full bellies and sore feet, wishing once again that we could just sit in the park for the rest of the day. Eventually we headed for our last museum, the Musee D’Orsay. With our feet sore from walking, we tried to rent some public bikes, but for some reason, it wouldn’t accept our cards. We hopped on the Metro and awayed to our final destination.

Riding on the Metro.

I was pretty much done with museums by now. My feet were aching and my tummy was chocked full of fruit and cream. No photos allowed here… whew, because I couldn’t take any more photos. I had no energy. We saw Monet, Manet, Cezanne, Renoir, Toulouse-Lautrec, Degas, and a bunch of others. I didn’t get most of it. But just as it was neat to see the Mona Lisa, it was neat to see some of the other famous paintings.

The Museum announced it would be closing before we had even seen all of the first floor. We rushed over to see Van Gogh. His self portrait was just as impressive as the Mona Lisa, except you could actually get close enough to see it. I sat down. I was done. Ruby laughed and urged me into the last room. Maybe you’ll see something you like. I followed Ruby into the adjoining room and gasped. She was already laughing. What was Marcus doing on the wall??? She was thinking the same thing. But we couldn’t take a picture!?! ARGH!!  We would have stole one but there was a guard in the room.

Marcus, um, I mean, Gustave Courbet’s The Wounded Man.

I left the Musee D’Orsay in much better spirits, aching feet and all. We headed home, ate sandwiches and drank wine, then headed out for a twilight view of Paris atop the Arc De Triomphe. Complete with views of a cute boy and the Eiffel Tower.

Day Seventeen of Twenty. Another perfect Friday.

We couldn’t locate Napolean’s Tomb, so instead we decided it was time for another pastry break. The Frazier was messy but fabulous. I was in love. We sat around with full bellies and sore feet, wishing once again that we could just sit in the park for the rest of the day.

Eventually we headed for our last museum, the Musee D’Orsay. With our feet sore from walking, we tried to rent some public bikes, Velo, but for some reason, it wouldn’t accept our cards. We hopped on the Metro and awayed to our final destination.

I was pretty much done with museums by now. My feet were aching and my tummy was chocked full of fruit and cream.  At least we couldn’t take photos… I had no energy. We saw Monet, Manet, Renoir, Lautrec, and a bunch of others. I didn’t get most of it. But just as it was neat to see the Mona Lisa, it was neat to see some of the other famous paintings.

The Museum announced it would be closing before we had even seen all of the first floor. We rushed over to see Van Gogh… his self portrait was just as impressive as the Mona Lisa, and this one you could actually get close enough to to be inspired by it. I sat down. I’m done, Ruby. She laughed and says, one more room… maybe you’ll see something you like. We walk into the room. I did like this stuff. Then I followed Ruby into the adjoining room and gasped. She was already laughing. What was Marcus doing on the wall??? She was thinking the same thing. But we couldn’t take a picture!?! ARGH!!  We would have stole one but there was a guard in the room. Oh bother.

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One response to “Parks, Pastries, and Courbet

  1. Ruby says:

    Sigh. The most beautiful day I’ve spent in Paris. I will dream about it always. Bellies full of pastries. Parisian clouds. Sun. Laughter. Perfect.

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