Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Europe Trip: Paris and Chamonix

We took a ferry from Dover to France and then drove to Versailles (royal palace outside of Paris). We stayed in a charming little bed and breakfast outside of Paris (thankfully) and took the train into Paris. The French fulfilled every sterotype, except being rude. They carried baguettes everywhere...on their bikes, in their bike baskets, in their backpacks, in their hands and at all times of the day too. The French smoked a lot as well, even in that particular French way with their delicate fingers. I almost laughed out loud when I saw a guy smoking like that. They also wear striped shirts, scarfs and berets... no joke!! So, all of these stereotypes I had heard about were true except that the French were the kindest of the mainland Europeans. So, now for some pictures...

The White Cliffs of Dover in the early morning as we are leaving England

Me, Tyler, Jessica and Mom outside of the Palace of Versailles, a very beautiful place if one could stand all the fluffery( I don't think that is a word, but it fits), grandeur, oppulence, marble and gold. I could never feel like this place was home.This is actually one of the less decorated rooms. I think the next-in-line king's wife would use a room like this.


Just put a euro in the lock and use one of these rental bikes!
Mom in the Shakepeare book store, which was filled with books floor to ceiling. Mom and I in front of the Norte Dame Cathedral

Erik getting ready to enjoy a delicious crepe

Mom and Erik by the glass pyramids at the Louvre. The Louvre takes more than the few hours we gave it, so we will have to go back again someday. We did get to see the Mona Lisa fortunatly, although she was surrounded by an enormous crowd. Erik by a pyramid

The Inverted Pyramid at the Louvre (for those who have read the DaVinci Code)

A very nice window display.... I especially like the little rabbit.I had to stand in the middle of a very busy street to get this picture, but a lot of other people were doing the same thing.

Tyler, Erik, Jessica and I posing in a very cool little part of Paris. It was near the Notre Dame, which is on an island on the Seine River. It was a vibrant and lively little area that we all loved.
Do I need to say what this is?

Erik, Jessica, Mom and I on the first floor of the Eiffel Tower.
Jessica, me and Tyler on the second level of the Eiffel Tower. We decided to take the stairs up, because we were tired of lines. However, they failed to mention that the stairs only went up to the second level due to some construction or something that was going on. So, we only were able to go to the second level, but the view was still amazing.


And now a very eloquent speech about the Eiffel Tower:

Looking up at the Eiffel Tower
This is the very lovely bed and breakfast were we stayed and I highly reccomend it.


After Paris, we headed southeast towards Chamonix in the French Alps. It was very beautiful drive and we all loved Chamonix. Chamonix was exactly what someone would expect of a little town in the Alps. We need to come back someday in the winter to ski here!
Tyler and Mom in the town square, with the church behind them.

The church. Tyler and I eating a baguette

Erik looking at the glacial runoff river that runs through Chamonix.
These are some lovely pictures of the Alps

I really liked France. Paris and Chamonix were very different places connected only by their love of baguettes. Paris was huge and busy whereas Chamonix was quiet and small. I enjoyed these towns immensly and would love to go back and spend more time in both places.

Up next Vernazza, Italy!

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