Saturday, November 21, 2009

France, Day 9- The Eiffel Tower!

Day 9, Tuesday.
Eiffel Tower day!
I had my heart set on eating crepes under the Eiffel Tower, seriously, we did the day before at Notre Dame and it couldn’t get more French than crepes under the Eiffel Tower, right? Well, if had wanted a hot dog, a hamburger, cotton candy or just about any other very American carnival food choice it would have been easy. Couldn’t find crepes under the tower. We are in France people! No crepes under the Eiffel Tower? That is just wrong. The little place that had crepes across the street wasn’t cutting it either. If I was going to pay 4 euros for crepes then it was going to be in the right place, seriously. Stupid cotton candy. I wanted to get the girls each a little Eiffel Tower, for obvious reasons, parents can’t go home from Paris without cheap little Eiffel Towers. We found a good price but figured we could wait and get them later however we never found them again at that price and that style and I couldn’t face walking up the stairs again to go get them. If we had wanted Eiffel Tower key chains, however, there was no shortage. First we had Team Africa selling key chains: “For you, 1 Euro, no? 3 for 1 Euro? 5? 5 for 1 Euro!” Jeremy: “10 for 1 Euro!” Took them by surprise and they would laugh telling us no, no way. It turns out that was more effective than “non, merci” a thousand times over. These guys were pushy. Then there was Team India just down a little from Team Africa selling the same key chains, not as pushy, not as many bargains either and Jeremy didn’t get to try his line on them so not as fun. Team Africa had split up and the second part of the team was directly under the Tower, where we looked up the skirt as Jeremy said. Have you noticed an emerging trend with Jeremy’s dirty mind in France? “I see London, I see France I can see your underpants!” Funny guy, funny, funny guy. Anyway, it was rather entertaining to watch Team Africa work really hard to sell us junk that we now weren’t buying on principle, they kept turning down Jeremy’s offer. Any time they thought police or an inspector were coming their way they started running away. It was a game really, the police would go “boo!” and the illegal vendors would run then come back, laughing and ready to go again. Giant game of cat and mouse all under the skirt of the Eiffel Tower. Didn’t see that one coming. The tower, I guess I should say something about the Tower. It is beautiful. Like a giant lacework of metal jutting up into the air. We, of course, snapped a shot of Jeremy and I kissing in front of the phallic lace-work structure, how else could we say we’ve really been in Paris? Opting to save going up to view Paris from her observation decks for when the girls are with us, the Eiffel Tower will have to wait to be graced with Martin-Webers on her platforms once we live here. Honestly, I think the girls will enjoy the experience far more than I will so it makes sense to save it for a time when they can be with us. Though I found the Eiffel Tower completely enchanting and like the official rubber stamp that I’m really in Paris I just wasn’t in love with it. We took off for lunch.
Leaving the hotel we used a different metro stop than we had before, Abbesses was the name of the stop. Many of the stops have a unique fingerprint related to the area it is located in, this one had a million steps. I don’t know if there are actually a million but we stopped half way down just because we were laughing at all the stairs we had taken and stopped again before we reached the bottom to catch our breath, I mean, laugh. The walls were wallpapered in large photo prints of the area probably from the 70’s judging by the quality and colors. It was fun but seemed a bit much, seriously, I could walk all those steps and end up somewhere other than a stinky metro stop. When we came back from seeing the Eiffel Tower we opted for the elevator ride up, I was pretty sure the steps would kill me. And that is how I rode the biggest elevator I have ever been on in my life. Who knew I’d get to have that experience while in Paris also?
We ate at a charming little place called le Coquelicot, I had veggie soup that was really carrot soup and a salad and Jeremy had a croque monsieur (that he willingly shared with me, soooooooooooooooo delectable!), salad and then we had discount pastries with a giant bowl of hot chocolate after the waitress heard us observing that the price for to-go pastries was much cheaper than to sit and eat the same thing. She was a GREAT waitress and got a great tip as a result.
Following lunch it was time to say “au revoir” to Montmartre. I was sad to leave, in the short time we were there it felt so where we were supposed to be that it was difficult to walk away. Still, we grabbed our bags and headed out of Paris to our hosts in Coye-la-ForĂȘt. We needed to do so e-mails and such so we hung out at Lamorlaye’s McDonald’s again. I really have been to McDonald’s in France more than I have in years in the states. If I let myself think about it that is so depressing. We closed the evening with dinner and French/English/German conversation with Inge and Meinhart.

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