Tuesday, April 26, 2011

le Tour d'Eiffel, Paris

It was a hot day in Paris, this day before Easter 2011, so why arrive at the Eiffel Tower in a pink limousine?! It keeps the dust off your feet....
We've been to the tower before, just never had the luxury of enough time to wait in line to go up to the second floor lookout and catch the glimpses of the city. So, today, after our lunch here in the park (previous posting), we move towards the tower where these trimmed sycamore trees seems to be swallowed up into the mouth of the tower!

 Well, a refresher seemed in order, since the lines are VERY LONG to get into either the North, South or East leg of the tower.
 We opt for the shortest line which snakes back and forth and proceeds along very slowly! This gives on time to look up into the tower
 or catch framed glimpses of the city across the Senn.
 We're getting close now....excitement building!  Then, as we get near to the front of the line, a security officer sees us and whisks us away to a special entrance for handicapped people (if only we'd known about this sooner, we wouldn't have spent one hour in the line!).  Mark waits at the gate while the officer takes one person from each party (waiting in this line) to the back side of the ticket counter to purchase our tickets (discounted to 8 Euros total for both of us--a deal!).
 Then we slide into the line, through security and into the funiculaire (don't you just love that word?!) that goes up this leg of the tower at a 45 degree angle!
Here's the view as we ascend...
 Once we up to the second floor platform (a two-deck affair), we can see the city. Here's l'Eglise Sacre Coeur (Sacred Heart church) sitting pearly white on the north hill.
 Clouds come and go (it rains later) making a wonderful panel of colors that drift back and forth across the skyline.
 Here's a stitched photograph (3 photos) looking along the Senn towards the Grand Palace, with the huge glass conservatory built for the 1900 Paris World Exhibition.
 From this high up, the tower has such delightful architectural features!

 Below us, the Carousel plays it merry music...a twirl of delight!
 Back across the Senn towards one of the museums; the l'Arc de Triumphe is towards the upper right-hand corner of this picture.
 A stitched landscape of this same view:

 More pics in other directions around the tower:

 Mark is in awe. We ate our picnic repas earlier down below in the shady part of this grand garden (to the left)!
 We spend a couple of hours up here, enjoying the view, sipping de l'eau et vin (water and wine), to build up the courage to take the slide (no, just kidding, it was an elevator!) down to the base:

As we leave, the storm clouds darken and we have a brief rain shower while crossing the river. It soon lets up and we ascend up the long hill to l'Arc de Triumphe for dinner in a cafe somewhere....
Disclaimer: This blog is not an official University of Minnesota or Fulbright Program blog. The views expressed are my own and not those of the Fulbright Program, the U.S. Department of State or any of its partner organizations, or the University of Minnesota.

1 comment:

  1. Paris looks amazing!!! Need to get there...