July 29 2009: Paris and the train to London


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We had time on the 29th of July to see a little more of Paris and give the city a second chance. We were on a time limit as we had to catch an expensive train ride under the English Channel later that day, so we chose a few landmarks to visit that we simply had to see – The Eiffel Tower and the Notre Dame Cathedral. Our first stop was the Eiffel Tower:

and a slightly more unusual look at the Tower:

We were excited to get there, and joked that another landmark (almost every one so far in our travels) was under restoration. We proceeded to stand and wait in line for about half an hour, to get to a person that would not let us go up the tower – our bags were too big. The man didn’t speak English, but simply pointed to a bag measurement device not unlike those you find in airports to measure carry-on luggage. As we had left our hostel for the day, we had to carry our backpacks with us. Since there was no storage locker of any kind to speak of, we couldn’t go up. After this, I was pretty fed up with the city and couldn’t wait to leave (I think Desi was starting to feel the same way too).

Oh, there were also armed guards under the Eiffel Tower, just as intimidating as the ones we saw in the train station:

Well, we still had time to see the last landmark on our list. So off we went to the Notre Dame Cathedral to spend the last of our time in Paris:

The inside of the cathedral was even more beautiful than the outside:

We walked around the cathedral, admiring the architecture, art, sculptures and overall atmosphere. There was a service taking place during our visit, and some of the passersby stopped to watch. The outside of “ring” of the church was for free wandering, which was where we spent our time. We found some small candles and bought two of them – one for Desi and I and one for her grandmother. Below is the candle that we lit for us:

We also bought a larger one to take home to my grandma, and then headed back out. It was after we left the cathedral that I took the exterior shots; Desi watched the bags and I ran around the corner quickly to snap a few photos – we were both getting tired at this point because our bags weighed so much and we weren’t used to taking them around all day. I came back and Desi had found a small puppy to play with that put smiles on both our faces. ๐Ÿ™‚ As we walked back to the nearest metro station, we found a group ofย  children feeding and playing with a group Pigeons:

We made our way back to the train station with plenty of time to spare, and checked in to board (a very similar process to boarding a plane). Before we knew it, we were on our way to London traveling underneath the English Channel through the “chunnel”. We arrived in the evening, checked in to our hostel and found a nearby restaurant to wind down our day. I didn’t take many London photos this night, but here is one of that night’s beverage:

We had no energy left to explore at this point in the evening, so we called it a night. Thankfully we weren’t in separated rooms, and had the time to wash our clothes. We also found out around this time that my good friend Kiff had come down with the Swine Flu, so our plans for the following few days definitely had to change as he was under quarantine. Instead of heading north to Bradford, England, we added a couple of extra destinations to our travels and decided to spend another full day in London – which is a story for another day ๐Ÿ™‚ Enjoy the rest of the gallery below!

Comments

  1. Diane and Walter Enns
    October 14th, 2009 | 7:41 pm

    Hi Don and Desi

    The effiel tower sure does look different when you see it from the perspective of using a fish eye lens….too bad that you guys didn’t have the opportunity to see the view of paris from the top of the tower. Walter and I remember it as if it was yesterday. Don my favorite picture has to be the one of the stain glass windows at the Notre Dame followed by you and Desi in front of the Effiel tower. Although I really like how you captured the water flow from the fountain too…

    Love Mom and Walter

  2. Desi
    October 14th, 2009 | 9:44 pm

    Hi Diane and Walter ๐Ÿ™‚
    I couldn’t help myself but write too. I love all of the wonderful photos you take Donny <3<3<3 It captures so many important and unique experiences (even thought we could not go up on the Effiel tower). Thank you for the sweet comments always. Donny and I always read them with excitement and are thankful for it!!!

    Desi & Donny ๐Ÿ™‚ <3

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