France '05

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Bye Mom and Dad. Have a nice trip. Don't worry about me, I'll be fine.
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Monday. Paris. After trundling from the train station to our hotel, we hit the streets. Looking down Rue de Richeleiu toward the Louvre.
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The courtyard nearly surrounded by the Louvre, after entering via the Passage du Richelieu. Picture guide: People in shorts are overwhelmingly tourists. French women wear dresses or skirts, men wear long pants, or, at the shortest, capri-pant-like things.
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Entrance to the Louvre is through the pyramid and down to a subterranean foyer.
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Under the pyramid looking back out. Sadly, this is all we got to see of the Louvre. Our guide book said it was open late tonight, but they moved the evening hours to Friday. Drat!
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The another view of the Louvre's inner courtyard.
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We're walking from our hotel to the Tour Eiffel. This is the Obelisque de Luxor in the Place de la Concorde, between the Louvre and the Jardin des Tuileries. The gold inlay on the base tells the story of how the obelisk was taken from Egypt to France.
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Looking west along the Champs de Elysee to the Arc de Triomphe from the Place de la Concorde. The obelisk is behind the camera.
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Looking west along the Seine from the Pont de la Concorde.
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Les Invalides. Old soldier's home built by Louis XIV. Resting place of Napoleon. Arms cache stolen by rioters to storm the Bastille. Largest single collection of monuments in Paris. This is as close as we got. Time's a wastin'.
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The Tour d'Eiffel is surprisingly hard to see when you're near its eastern base. Finally we got a break in the trees.
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Port de Suffren Tour Eiffel. Here you can catch a Batobus tot ake you to various stops up and down the Seine. We stayed on foot, though.
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On our way back. Palais Grand and Palais Decouverte, across the Pont Alexandre III from Les Invalides. Nothing understated about those street lamps.
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Looking back toward the Palais Grand. It's 9:30 PM. Paris is at a higher latitude than Seatlle.
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Looking east, the direction we're walking, along the Seine toward the Isle de la Cite', upon which sits Notre Dame. There's other famous buildings in this picture too too, but I don't know what they are.
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Passage next to the Comedie Francaise, in the Palais Royal, a stone's throw from the Passage de Richelieu into the Louvre. Our hotel is just up the street.
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Courtyard of the Palais Royal. It's art.
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Tuesday. Walking around Isle de la Cite' and then on to Musee d'Orsay. First stop: Ste. Chapelle on Isle de la Cite'.
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Lower tier chapel of Ste. Chapelle. A rare shot without crowds of tourists. Built by Louis IX to house trinkets -- umm, I mean, relics -- from the holy land.
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Lower tier chapel of Ste. Chapelle. Despite all the "Shhhhhh! Be respectful!" signs, there's a vendor booth right in the chapel to sell tourist goodies, off camera left.
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Lower tier chapel of Ste. Chapelle.
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Lower tier chapel of Ste. Chapelle.
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Upper tier chapel of Ste. Chapelle. The walls are all stain glass. Everywhere. Quite amazing.
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One bank of stain glass from the upper chapel of Ste. Chapelle.
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Above the altar at the east end of the upper chapel of Ste. Chapelle.
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Upper chapel of Ste. Chapelle. I'm sure every pane tells a story. Anyone?
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West end of the upper chapel of Ste. Chapelle. The west ends of churchs always have these rosette thingies.
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View inside from the balcony of the upper chapel of Ste. Chapelle.
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Upper chapel of Ste. Chapelle. Yeah, no shortage of tourists.