“A day spent without the sight and sound of beauty, the contemplation of mystery, or the search of truth or perfection is a poverty-stricken day; and a succession of such days is fatal to human life.” ~Lewis Mumford
Day 1: We loaded the bus bright and early at 6am and headed out to the ferry—we took a ferry across instead of the Chunnel so that we could see more sites. The Seely’s sang the White Cliffs of Dover as we left the shore—because you know, the white cliffs of Dover are RIGHT THERE, and they really are quite white and striking. The ferry ride itself wasn’t the best—it was like having vertigo at the hospital after surgery all over again, only not nearly as bad, just annoying—but it wasn’t too long before we were back in the coach.
First we stopped at Compiegne to see the place of the November 11, 1918 Armistice , which was pretty cool—especially because it was overcast and cool outside, a very nice change from our 100 degree weather here in London.
Next we visited the trenches at Vimy, which were extremely interesting: there was an eerie but not creepy feeling here, if that makes any sense. They have preserved some of the trenches of the war—sand bags and all—so you can walk through them and get a feel for them. They aren’t at all like I imagine (Hollywood kind of messes with reality); No Man’s Land was only a few feet across, they were almost practically fighting on top of each other, it’s crazy.
When we got to Paris we dumped our things at the hotel and set off to find food. I of course went with the Tate’s and the Seely’s, because after their big lecture on how not to get robbed and/or die in Paris, it just felt safer with them. ;) We went to the Latin Quarter behind Notre Dame (BEAUTIFUL by the way) and got these monstrous and delicious Crepes, then sat in front of the cathedral and watched the sunset—NOTRE DAME! Yeah, we were just chillin’ in front of Notre Dame, no big deal. After the crepes and some French ice cream we took a boat tour on the Seine.
This is the Wishing Bridge: when you go underneath you are supposed to make a wish (so much wishing on this trip--better come true!)--romantic, right? Works better if you're a long lost Russian princess dancing with a kitchen boy, but you take what you can get. ;)
And my first shot of the Eiffel Tower--cool, but not quite what I expected. Turned out to be much more impressive once I actually went there a few days later--then I loved it. It was pretty though. :)