We certainly got a lot of exercise in Paris! Now I understand why Parisian men and women are so skinny. After we dropped our bags at our hotel (well, technically it was a B&B, but it had a HUGE room right next to the Luxembourg Garden), we decided to make our way over to the Eiffel Tower for a picnic. The map made it look like it was only a short walk away, so off we went.
Along the way, we passed through the Latin Quarter, which looked very lively and fun (we would swing by there again the next day). We also stopped by Notre Dame and took some photos.
Then we continued our walk along the Seine, soaking in the beautiful views and romance of the city. I was surprised by how many people were walking by us holding hands. These weren’t just tourists on their honeymoon, anniversary, or getaway with their mistress. They were locals in love. Something about this city just oozes romance. Maybe there’s something in the water?
We had planned to pick up some sandwiches and picnic food on the way to the Eiffel Tower, but we kept walking and didn’t see a single place along our route where we could stop and grab some food. The sun was starting to set and we were getting nervous that Paris would close down as early as London had the night before and we’d be left at the foot of the Eiffel with nothing to eat. Not eating much was becoming a theme of our trip. It seemed like we were always hungry! We tried to pick up the pace because what we thought was a short walk to the Eiffel was nearing 3 miles at this point, and we still couldn’t see the Tower.
Eventually we caught a glimpse of it, and because other people must have the same plans as us, we also found a tiny market/bakery nearby. We grabbed a couple sandwiches (toasted), a bottle of wine (which the store owner was kind enough to open for us since our bottle opener had been taken away at airport security before we left SFO… along with 2 pocket knives and a hammer that had found it’s way into our luggage, but that’s another story), orange soda, and some water. Then we kept walking and found another bakery right before the tower and decided to get one more sandwich (did I mention we were hungry?).
We made it to the foot of the Eiffel Tower just as the sun was setting. We set up our picnic dinner, laid in the grass and sipped wine with many other people who were doing the same. It was a beautiful night. The weather was perfect (the weather report had predicted rain, but that was no where to be seen), and everyone around us seemed to be smiling, laughing or in love.
After dinner and wine by the Tower, which lit up and sparkled every hour, we headed over to a nearby crepe stand and shared a crepe filled with chocolate, strawberries, and whipped creme. Delicious!
Slightly drunk after splitting a bottle of wine on no food, we stumbled back along the Seine toward our hotel. We stopped by the Louvre to take some pictures and ponder The Da Vinci Code for awhile. On our way back to our hotel, we tried to find a bar that was featured in the movie Midnight in Paris, but try as we might, we couldn’t locate it.
Eventually we found our way back to our B&B, flopped down on the huge bed (everything seemed huge compared to our bed at home;) and drifted off to sleep with visions of Eiffel Towers, crepes, wine and baguettes dancing in our heads.