The sights around Paris

Trip Start Jul 26, 2005
Trip End Nov 01, 2005

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Friday, August 5, 2005

Its 9:30 this morning and ive slept in just nice. The last couple of days have been great! First up on the 3rd (tuesday), i got up, wacked some shorts on and we headed for the underground to go see the Louvre. The day was really warm, not humid but just nice. Once we got off the underground and headed for the street we came across one of the outside walls of the Louvre. Went on forever and at that point i realised how huge it was. We walked through the entrance bit and arrived in the centre section of it with the infamous glass tirangles. I had seen so many pictures of this over the last few years and have even had this as my computer wallpaper. But here i was actually standing in that same place that i had imagined for years. Actually seeing it for real was a whole another experience though. I loved it! It really was beautiful and i was stoked to be here. After about a thousand pictures later we walked inside the main glass window triangle and headed down to the main reception bit.

Well once inside the Louvre, it was huge! I grabbed a map and had a look. Each floor went for ages - and there were 4 levels! Unfortunatly most descriptions of the artifacts were written in French, so i couldnt understand them, however we could work out the date's of how old they were and most of them were dating B.C. There were so many beautiful sculptures and exhibits to look at, you could spend forever in here. But forever we didn't have - so we made sure we saw all the important ones - we considered to be anyhow :o) Finaly after hours of walking around we got to the all famous Mona Lisa! To get to stand right infront of the picture you had to fight your way though a huge crowd. But once i did, just standing infront of it was so wierd. You've seen pictures of this throughout your entire life, and here is the actual canvas painting! I'm not 100% sure why this painting in particular got to be so infamous, but its pretty impressive beeing able to see it for real. Well apart from the Mona Lisa, there were so many other famous paintings, sculptures and artifacts that i've read about before. Was a good experience coming here...

Well after walking around the Louvre for hours on end our feet were kinda tired so we had a bit of a lay down on the lawns infront of the Louvre where quite a few others took the exact opertunity in the awesome weather we were getting. Just as i was falling asleep i forced myself to get up as my stomach was growling and we had to get food... Just outside the Louvre to the right was some huge fair going on with faris wheels n all. Similar size to Adelaide's annual one but this probably runs everyday for the year. Once onto the street i just had to gaze as this was the biggest street i had ever seen in my life! - Had to take a snapshot as it went on forever. I ended up having a sandwitch roll thing and then we kept on the trek and arrived at Cleopatra's needle (a short walk from the Louvre). The artifact was Egyptian and had engravings all over it - about 3,300 years old. Pretty cool. From this spot you could see right down the Champs Elysses to the Arc De Triumph! I didnt realise there were so many shops on the Champs Elysses and was absolutely packed with thousands of people. After the long walk we arrived with the Arc De Triumph staring smack bang at us. It was pretty huge, alot bigger than i expected. The intersection, or the huge roundabout that goes around it is... "Bloody Insane". haha! Cars, motorbikes and busses all trying to make there way around it with absolutely no order what so ever. There were no lanes on the round about, but was equivelant to about 7ish laned round about back home (not that we have any that big) and has 12 roads all leading into the same round about. I now know why the class it the busiest intersection in the world. Well time to get seriouse... I gotta cross it! There's really no way to approach this as there's constantly cars going around in chaos order so.... I just started running pretty much! And hoped to hell that ya dont get hit. After a close call i found myself on the otherside. Haha - definatly one of the sketchiest things i've done but had a good laugh after doing it. Not far behind me was danielle - haha, dont think she was really up for it but we both made it :o) Well here we are standing infront of this gigantic arch staring up at its statues it has carved. We just sat down for a while watching cars try and navigate there way through this intersection. It was the funniest thing, as not 10 seconds goes by that you dont hear a couple of cars horns blaring. Cars were entering the round about at rediculous speeds making cars that are randomly trying to exit screech their breaks and visa versa. With the 25 minutes i was just watching i saw probably half a dozen very very close calls. The Arc De Triumph then had some memorial thing on it, so we sat and watched that for a while.

Time to head back to our hotel as we were buggered and hungry. When back at the hotel with my head on the pillow i nearly fell staight alseep, so i forced myself up and went out for a bit of a walk for a while while dan stayed at the hotel. After checking out whats in our local, there were heaps of pubs and cafe's. But then again this is Paris - cafe's are everywhere. I ended up walking into some random pub and was keen to try more French beer. The guy behind the bar was speaking in french to everyone around me so i really had no idea what they were saying. When i ordered my drink he went over to the till without saying anything... He then said "what country!?", as i replied Australia he then immediatly went into some kangaroo stance (???) and started hopping up and down! Hahahaha - riiiighto! SO yeah then he was a bit more happy atleaset - so after my beer i was determined to get a bit of a convo out of him, so i appolagised for my poor french, and had a bit of a yarn to him. Turned out to be a nice guy - just took a bit of effort at first, which is understandable when i dont speak his language.

On the way back to the hotel i saw some horrible 'road rage' incident, where 2 guys and 2 girls where having a punch up in the middle of the road over who knows what - but i dont think one woman ended up very well as she was on the side of the road holding her head. Just in time the Police rocked up and started sorting it out.

Well back to the hostel to have a good night sleep as we got an early rise!
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