Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Have I fallen in Louvre with Paris?

It's hard to say today was a good day considering my aunt got completely set up and pick pocketed straight out of her back pack in the subway, but it's also hard to call it anything less than great considering we saw some of the most amazing sights in the world. We started the day with delicious french coffee on the way to the Louvre. Have I ever been anywhere so overwhelming? I don't think so. Nor do I think I have ever been anywhere so crowded outside of Times Square. The girl who finds art museums soothing and peaceful found herself stressed trying to merely navigate the world's largest and oldest museum. Of course we saw the Mona Lisa, Venus de Milo, and even made it to the third floor to my hearts desire to see the impressionism. One of the main things that makes Europe so fascinating for Americans is that it is a marvel merely just how old everything is. Honestly, my favorite part of the Louvre might have been the building itself and learning about the history of it, a palace until the royal family moved to Versailles and then common housing during the revolution until it became a museum in only 1800. After the Louvre, we stopped for lunch at a cafe and then headed back to St. Chapelle, housing some of the world's most impressive stained glass, and La Conciergerie, a prison where Marie Antionette, Louis XVI, and other prisoners were held prior to execution during the revolution (pretty creepy). The stained glass in St. Chapelle truly was miraculous with it's rich colors and different sections of window panes representing different books of the Bible. Next we headed to the subway to get to the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe, but this is when we ran into the pick pocket and crisis occurred. We made a police report, cancelled all credit cards, and all will be okay. Once we collected ourselves, we headed back out to conquer the city. We started with the gigantic Arc de Triomphe, built by the famous Napoleon, where we climbed to the top for a spectacular view just before sunset and then went to the Eiffel Tower, which we saw at night. Due to the robbery set back, we lost a lot of time and were unable to make it to the very top of the Eiffel Tower, but we went to the second highest stop. The Eiffel Tower is not at all overrated. It is truly worth all the hype, especially when the lights begin to twinkle and make everyone squeal with glee. The view at night is freeing and beautiful, causing you to simply fall in love with the city of lights and love even after the most stressful of days.

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