Pictures Becoming Reality

Trip Start Jun 18, 2008
Trip End Jul 03, 2008

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Flag of France  , Île-de-France,
Friday, September 5, 2008

So my 1st official day in Paris, the most visited city in Europe! All these pictures seen on postcards and my sister's French textbook became reality. Starting of with a classic French breakfast including croissants and other French breads, I then hopped on my coach and made my way into the traffic laden City of Paris. It started with a trip to the only hill in Paris, the artist colony of Montmartre. Even though this is the pickpocket capital of Paris, I was able to make it up the hill to the Basilique de Sacre Coeur. The church, standing on top of Montmartre is able to be seen throughout the city.  After going through the church and seeing my 1st close up view of the Eiffel Tower, I had my first crepe, and looked at all the amazing pictures. One of my friends even got her caricature done, and it was amazing! After about 1 1/2 to 2 hrs there, we then hopped back onto our coach and went on a tour of the city. Going around the city, near the River Seine, we went through Bastille Square, the prison-fortress that was stormed to signify the start of the French Revolution, the Conciergerie, where Marie Antoinette was held before she was executed by the guillotine, then into the Rive Gauche, the Right Bank, into the Latin Quarter, past the Sorbonne, the Moulin Rouge with its windmill, back over the river to the Louvre. The former Royal Palace, before Versailles, the Louvre, with its Pyramid was our next destination. I'm really not a fan of art, but why turn down a visit to the most famous art museum in the world? Once we finally entered, my friends and I made our way to the Mona Lisa, fighting the huge crowds along the way.  She I guess is fading, but I can't see it.  The Louvre is massive, still intact are the frescoes on the ceilings, back when it was a royal palace.  After spending about 2 hrs in there and getting lost a few times, we made our way back to the coach to continue the tour of Paris. After all, we hadn't seen the headliners yet. We went our way past the Tuilleries Garden, and through Place de la Concorde home of the FIA (Racing organization, don't ask), to the domed Pantheon, then over to the Arc de Triomphe and the Champs-Elysees. The Arc was my 2nd emotional moment of the tour after seeing Big Ben. Down the 10 laned Champs-Elysees and the Eiffel Tower, through the tunnel where Princess Diana died, and onto FD Roosevelt and JF Kennedy Streets, where the US Embassy is located, onto our dinner stop at Restaurant Le Saulnier again. I see why Paris is the most romantic city in the world. It got even better. We made our way to Pont d'Alma to our River Seine Cruise. Going down the river, past the Ile de la Cite and Notre Dame, under the oldest bridge in Paris, the Pont Neuf, past the original Statue of Liberty, the Musee d'Orsay, the National Assembly and great views of the Eiffel Tower and many Kodak moments. My profile picture and this blog's picture are both from that cruise. Definitely a day that will be remembered forever.
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