An 15 mile stroll around Paris!

Trip Start Jul 30, 2006
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of France  ,
Monday, September 4, 2006

     When we returned back to Paris we decided we had better see as much as possible since we just spend 6 hours on a train.  we headed to the nearest subway and headed to the North Bank of the Seine to the musee du Louvre.  Since it was so late in the day, we had to walk all the way around the building... this place is big!  Once we got to the back we say La Pyramide du Louvre and sat for a few pictures.  As we watched the sun set we could see the Obelisk, the Arc de Triumph and the Eiffel Tower.  Checking the map we saw that these were all connected and formed what is called the Triangle D'Oro.  we jumped up and headed straight out through the Jardin des Tuileries to the monument which I assume is to mark the end of the monarchy and start of France becoming a Republic nation... 'Place de la Bastille'.  next to this column is the ancient egyptian monument L'Obelisque which was brought over from Egypt by Naoleon.  Both monuments are wll lit at night and the obelisk sits in the center of a large traffic circle.  From here the details of the Arc de Triumph were even clearer.  we figured we would continue up the Champs Elysees and check it out up close.  This was easier said than done.  Not realizing just how far away the arc was.  At first there were parks on either side of the avenue.  Every so often you could see grand old buildings tucked just deep enough inside the parks to elude a full shot with my camera.  The smaller trees that lined the avenue all the way up to the Arc were decorated with little with lights and made for an impressive sight.  Soon there were a few hotels then we started passing sidewalk cafes and ultra high end shops.  There were people strolling around and just hanging out everywhere.  As we reached the Arc it became even more impressive.  As the dark silhouttes of people passing infront if it I realized just how large it actually is.  We made our way over to the monument and took a picture of the eternal flame that burns in the archway and when we turned around we were able to get a view of the city.  Spotting the Eiffel Tower once again, we headed off.  At this point we hopped on the subway and got off at the Trocadero.  From this focal point we had a phenominal view of the Tower.  Neither of us knew that at the beginning of every hour the Tower would twinkle like there were a million flashbulbs covering the steel structure.  It made for some great photos.  Lyn and I each lined up for our picture with the twinkling frame.  Before long we walked down along the fountains arriving under the tower.  by now it was 11pm and we decided to sit in the Jardin de Champ de Mars... the park next to the tower.  having lugged a bottle of wine and some snacks since that morning, we thought this was an opportune time to have a little picnic under the stars and the Eiffel Tower.... what could be more romantic?  I was kind of proud of the idea until we realized how many pakistanis there were walking around with backpacks full of Champagne to sell.   ....good idea guys.   
     We continued our walk to the end of the Jardin into the Ecole Militaire and onto the street to find the nearest subway.  On our way back we had to transfer lines.  As soon as we came to the station there was an announcement that it was now 12:30 and the subway was shutting down for the evening.  Great!  We headed outside to see where we were and to hail a cab.  Unlike anywhere else we have ever been, the cabs in Paris will roll up, crack the window and ask where you are headed.  Cab after cab would just drive away.  Finally a cabbie agreed to take back to our haostel.  he explained that the others did not want to go there because there was little chance of finding the next fare in that area.  This cabbie seemed nice, but he pulled a fast once by pretending a accidentaly missed a turn and had to go way, way around...  this guy was a pretty bad actor and it was pretty obvious we were literally 'taken for a ride'.  Happy to finally arrive within walking distance of our beds, I walked right in and fell into the bed fully clothed.  The next morning I checked the pedometer and we had walked 15 miles that day! 
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