09 October 2012

paris: le deuxième jour

If I haven't already worn you out from day one's Parisian activities {as we were}, let me continue the saga of Americans in Paris....

We started off day two by leaving the hostel in the morning and walking along the Seine to Notre-Dame, where we sat at a cafe right outside and had crêpes and coffees for breakfast {banana and chocolate crêpes are the bomb-diggity, by the way}.  After we stuffed ourselves full of dessert, er, I mean, breakfast, we crossed the street and went into the cathedral.  There was a service in progress so I didn't take any pictures inside save the one as we were leaving at the very back of the church.

You guys, let me tell you about this experience for a second.  The service going on inside was absolutely spine-tinglingly beautiful.  The bishop, priests, and congregation were all singing {or was it chanting?}, and it was so beautiful - like something straight out of the chorus doing their thing in Hunchback of Notre-Dame, but so much more legit.  And the way the light filtered through the stained glass windows into this massive sanctuary was just so awe-inspiring that I almost cried....  it was absolutely incredible.  I would go back to Notre-Dame happily to just sit in on a service there.

After we left Notre-Dame, we made our way across the Seine towards the Paris Opera House.  My friend had always wanted to go inside, and the last time she was in Paris, they hadn't been able to for time.  Well, we got there, and wouldn't you know they were closed for that day only!  We were all really bummed!  We wanted to see the place that Phantom of the Opera takes place in, and see the massive chandelier, and the little pond under the Opera House, and everything, but we couldn't.

So after a few moments of grieving outside the gate, we continued up to the Basilique de Sacrée-Coeur on the hill.  It was quite a walk, let me tell you.  After having walked all over Paris the day before and all that morning {carrying all our stuff with us, too}, our feet were aching and our legs lost feeling, but we still managed to make it up the hills and many flights of stairs to the top of the hill, where we could look out over the entire city from the steps of the basilica.  At that point, our previously perfectly sunny and warm weekend took a turn, and the rain started to fall, so we found a place for lunch.  My friend had the escargot, which, though I couldn't quite stomach, I had to get a photo of.

After that, we made our way back down to Paris Gard du Nord to catch the Eurostar back to London.

The one thing to take from these Paris adventures?

That we did basically all of Paris
in one and a half days
and by walking almost all of it.

My feet are still not over it.

Pretty sure this should qualify us for some kind of award or place in the Guinness Book of World Records.
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