Sunday, November 06, 2005

Some final thoughts on Paris

Without a doubt, this was the best vacation I ever had. It was my first trip to Paris, and no amount of reading or looking at films and photographs could have prepared me for what I saw. There is simply no adequate way to describe this most beautiful of places, where both the grand vistas and the tiny details are equally stunning.

We did a lot, walked a lot, saw a lot, heard and tasted a lot. We wanted to go to Giverny, but waited too late; it was closed for the season. We never made it to Centre George Pompidou to see the contemporary art collection, but we did visit the Louvre, Musee d'Orsay, the Musee Rodin (and sculpture garden), and the exhibition at the Grand Palais Galleries. We strolled through the Tuileries by day and night, and enjoyed both the Jardin du Luxembourg and the Jardin des Plantes. We spent two days at Montmartre, took in part of the Parabis Masters tennis tournament, enjoyed the company of our friend from Geneva and her Paris friends, and visited a number of churches, including Cathedrale Notre Dame, Sainte Chappelle, and the Basilica Sacre Coeur.

We shopped, took hundreds of photographs, and enjoyed several cafes, a few of which were as memorable for their ambience as for their cuisine. We were fortunate to stay in a lovely, conveniently located, very guest-friendly hotel, Hotel Britannique, near the Place du Chatelet. It is excellent in every respect, but is worth the price of admission for its gorgeous, exquisitely comfortable red English lounge.

Once I get organized and caught up, I will post an online album of selected photographs.

In the meantime, I am sorting through my luggage, which didn't arrive until this afternoon, thanks to the ever-efficient machinations of the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.


Did you find it difficult to find veg food there? My sister in law in southern France warned me I'd starve there. I didn't, but wondered if Paris was veg-unfriendly.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:09 PM  

No, we didn't have too much of a problem. Many of the cafes had vegetarian dishes on the menu, and I did eat a bit of shellfish while I was there. But I also had evenings when I stayed away from the main dishes and just had entree and salad. The salads were wonderful.

Several of the restaurants do serve nothing but beef and chicken and duck, however. We just skipped them and found ones with more varies menus.

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