Randy was very excited the day we visited the Eiffel Tower because he had been to Paris as a teenager but could not remember going up into the tower.
So, imagine how he felt when we looked out our hotel window and saw heavy black clouds threatening to open up with buckets of rain?
By the time we finished our breakfast and took the ride through town to reach the tower, the skies had lightened just a bit but, we watched as the clouds would float by keeping the tower in the clouds.
Considering how excited he was, I asked him to write about our day as seen through his eyes.
After we were dropped off at the tower, we learned that we had a little time so we used this time to go onto the adjacent bridge to take some pictures of the river, the river boats, the tower and the Arc de Triumph. We were approached quite a bit by vendors selling souvenirs and after a little bargaining we bought some Eiffel tower keychains to bring home to family.
It was time to board the elevator to the second deck. What an experience! The elevator goes up at an angle and skips the 1st deck. So, there we were high above the city with magnificent 360 views of the city. The cameras were clicking and beeping everywhere.
As we looked up to the tower, I remember while in line that we were not going to the top of the tower. To get the top you had to pay an additional $10 Euros. It crossed my mind a couple of times to do it, but every time we looked up, the top level was lost in the clouds.
After being on the second level, we decided to climb down to the first level and found a snack bar where we got some coffee to take the chill off.
Then we found something that our guide Mary told us about. Recently glass flooring had been added to the first deck of the tower that you could walk on, if you dared. It was weird and scary doing this; you are so high that the people walking at street level looked like ants. I did it but never thought Mary would follow suit, but she surprised me and did it too!
Another thing we found on the first deck was a small room with 180° screen showing pictures of the Eiffel Tower under construction and beautiful and colorful pictures of the tower covered in lights. It was just beautiful.
Eventually, we made our way back down to the bus to the next adventure, the river boat cruise on the Seine.
The boat was very nice and had places to sit inside or up top. We chose the top and had a great view. We floated by so many beautiful buildings. We saw the Louvre, Notre Dame, National Assembly, the Museum d’Orsay and so many others.
The bridges were very beautiful too. We floated under the Ponte de l’Archeveche and Pont des Arts bridges and saw all the wonderful ‘love locks’ that have been written about in recent years.
As we floated along we watched Parisians walking, having picnics, bicycling and just enjoying the day as we were. The river was busy with boats of all kinds. It was a glorious scenic trip on the River Seine thru the old city of Paris!!!
Mary spotted a store across the busy street that her daughter liked and decided to go inside. The store, Louis Vuitton, was amazing inside. Mary and Sue went inside hoping to buy something small for their daughters but came out with nothing. Everything inside was beautiful but very expensive. Doug and I chose to stay for bit then went back outside.
It was time for lunch. After walking down the street a bit we chose to stop at the Café George V. The restaurant had a wonderful sidewalk café but the smoke chased us inside. We were joined by Joe, Marilyn and Claire. Several of us ordered the French Onion soup and other ordered the Lasagna. Everything was great and the waiter was very accommodating to his crazy American guests.
The trip back to our hotel was wonderful, with picturesque sites to see on both sides of the bus. Imagine how we felt when we passed a museum and there was a 6′ bronze Statue of Liberty on the grounds of the Musée des Arts et Metiers. We went to our room to rest for a bit and then it was decided that we would go to a Thai restaurant just around the corner from our hotel.
The Restaurant Bien 2 was small, inviting and the food was delicious. I was very happy that Mary finally ate a full meal so knew she was feeling better.
On our way back to the hotel, we stopped at a bakery and I purchased a French pastry for dessert. Most of our group was in the lobby of the hotel when we returned talking about their day’s experiences and our trip to the Chunnel and our visit to London the next day.
What a glorious day!!!!
Well, there you have it. I could not have said it any better.