Being over here and having friends has been great. We’ve spent a lot of time with Matthew and Ashli. I’ve seen my friend Clem a few times and on Sunday night our friends the Turchins arrived from Edinburgh for a quick visit. They were scheduled to arrive on Sunday night and as they have an almost two year old daughter and it can be confusing in a new country, Scotty caught the RER out to Charles Du Gaulle to help them with the transition from airport to train to hotel. As traveling with a small child is always an adventure it turned into even more of one when their flight was delayed two hours and they didn’t get in until 11:30PM. This set of a chain of events that made life a little more complicated as all bus service to the city ends at 10 and the trains stop running at midnight. By the time they came through security and picked up their bags all the trains were gone and the only way to get back to Paris was to catch a taxi. And the entire plane needed to catch taxis so the queue was very long. While waiting in the line they were approached by someone who said he had a “taxi” around the corner to which Scotty firmly said “No thanks.” A second later a police man approached and confirmed that they had made the right decision and this shady character was NOT a taxi driver and then the policeman went running off in pursuit! Whew!
Anyway, they all eventually made it to the hotel and tried to get some shut eye in preparation for four long days packed with sightseeing. We ran into them the next morning in line for the Conciergerie, the oldest remaining part of the first royal palace in Paris. It was also used as a prison during the Revolution and was where Marie Antoinette was held. I joined Leah for a walk through while the guys watched an exhausted and sleeping Aletheia while getting some much needed coffee. Here’s some pictures from the inside of the Conciergerie:
After seeing dear Marie’s play village at Versailles this cell, while much better than most people’s prison accommodations during the Revolution, does seem quite sparse.
Following that we took a walk around the Isle St. Louis where we happened upon a florist where I had bought flowers 11 years ago. I had to take some pics of this adorable little place and its gorgeous offerings:
We then walked along the right bank past the Hotel de Ville and saw some of the Paris Beach seen. They just recently turned the northern bank of the Seine into a beach complete with sand, palm trees, and much much more. There are beach chairs, play grounds, nutrition consultants, exercise experts, restaurants, anything you would imagine along the boardwalk of a real beach. It goes on for a month and Scotty and I will return and take pictures. For now, here’s glimpse we got of it from one of the bridges.
We eventually made our way to the Louvre where we left Sean, Leah and Aletheia to explore on their own. But first Aletheia and I had a good time playing by one of the gorgeous fountains:
And I must say that I think Scotty does such a good job taking pictures of people. He’s way better at that than I am! For instance, Aletheia isn’t normally one to smile for the camera. Yet Scotty got a great picture of her with her daddy and a huge grin!