If you’ve been wondering while reading these posts if we made it to the Louvre while we were in Paris, I’m going to spoil the surprise right now and say that on day 4, our last full day in Paris, we did. In fact, that’s where we started the day. I mean, only after we ate PB & J toast on the porch and took an elevator selfie on our way out of the apartment building showing how excited we were to get started on our last day in the City of Love/Light.
We got to the Louvre by 9:30am and went through the Napoleon apartments and followed the map to see the ‘highlights’ (as deemed by some power above), including, of course, the Mona Lisa in all her glory. That picture with a hundred cameras and three times as many people? Yes. We’re all looking at her. This was also the point in my life where I found out that Danny is a PRO at
pushing through navigating crowds. I mean, look at how close I am!! I am literally as close as you can get without being tackled by security and/or being Beyoncé (Have you seen this picture? What?! How did they swing that?)
At 11:15am we met up with a variety of other English-speaking folks for a guided tour (in English) of the top sights of the Louvre. I guess I should’ve asked more questions ahead of time, because we saw the exact same things on the tour that we had just seen on our own… However, our guide, Marie (who you can see below in a picture of a massive painting with a pretty blonde lady in front), was top-notch and reminded me so much of my French friend, Ines, who normally lives in Paris but just happens to be doing an internship in BORA BORA right now (if it possible to be jealous of anyone while on vacation in Paris, it is that they are in Bora Bora and you are not) that I couldn’t be too upset to see the same things twice in two hours. We wore headsets so that we, along with the people on our tour, could hear Marie no matter how near or far we were from her. It’s really a brilliant idea.
Our tour wrapped up at 12:45pm, just in time for us to snap a few pictures inside and outside of the famous Louvre glass pyramid and have a PB & J picnic out front.
After lunch, we walked through the Jardin des Tuileries to the Musee de l’Orangerie, which, to an American like myself could be mistaken as the Museum of Oranges, but in fact, it is a museum chock-full of impressionist and post-impressionist works, although the top floor is all Monet, and the basement is a conglomeration of Cezanne, Matisse, Picasso, and Renoir, among others. We really enjoyed this museum – it’s small (compared to the Louvre) but impressive and lacks the crowds of people that bigger museums draw.
We walked along the Seine back to our apartment, arriving around 4:30pm. Our way back was just lovely – if there’s one thing that I know about Paris, it’s that it’s pretty in the fall – and we stopped every so often to sit on benches, take a few pictures, and savor our last few hours in
the world’s most visited city (We were told this while in Paris, but I just now looked it up to so as not to post bogus facts and see that the honor belongs to Bangkok. Paris is number three. Oops.). We also walked around an island we had passed everyday while walking to/from the Eiffel Tower, but never got a chance to visit during the day. It was full of trees (and leaves) and was so peaceful that it was one of my favorite things in Paris – plus it had a great view of the building where we stayed for five nights (there’s a picture below) and the Statue of Liberty (couldn’t let the Americans have all the fun, I guess). Oh, and sorry in advance for all of the pictures of leaves…I got a little carried away.
Back at our apartment, I uploaded pictures from my camera to the computer (because what if I lost my camera later on that day and then BAM! all my pictures would be gone), Danny read, and we researched dinner options. We ended up at a Lebanese place, whose name I did not record in my notebook and therefore cannot remember, and had a lot of tasty food – cauliflower, eggplant, falafel, pitas, spinach pastries. I did write down that we played 20 questions over dinner and had a nice time together.
And because we’re nothing if not predictable, we went to the Eiffel Tower afterwards. We had intended to take the elevator to the very top since we didn’t understand how things worked the day before and only made it to the second floor, but decided to skip it and just wander around. Danny ate a sugar crepe and I continued my quest to find reasonably priced macaroons, a magnet for our fridge, and an ornament for our Christmas tree, plus a few postcards to send home (I was successful on all fronts except for the macaroons). And now, your last two pictures (from us at least) of the Eiffel Tower: one ‘regular’ and one with the sparkle…
Looking back at our pictures from day 4, I realize what a good day it was. We didn’t go crazy and tire ourselves out at the Louvre trying to see everything (which, by the way, I think is impossible unless you come back everyday for a month), we lingered along the river and among the leaves, we packed PB & J’s for lunch instead of embarking on another frustrating mission to find semi-vegan food for lunch, we saw the Eiffel Tower sparkle one last time, and Danny ate his 79th crepe of the trip. It was a great day.