Ah! Paris in the Fall!! Wonderful!! Magnificent!! Amazing!! Glorious!
In other words, we are enjoying Paris in the fall!!! The air is fresh; the sun is warm; the people are friendly (well, most of them). We're having a great time!!
This morning we took a bus ride around Paris and saw all the greatest sights. The Eiffel Tower; Notre Dame; Arc de Triomphe; Champs-Elysees; the President's residence; the Louvre; the Musee d'Orsay; the left bank of the Seine; the right bank of the Seine; the Sorbonne University; the Opera House; the House of the Invalides (military museum); Napoleon's burial chapel. The left bank of the Seine is where the schools and universities; the artists; the thinkers all live. The right bank of the Seine is home to the businessmen, financial leaders, industrialists, etc.
We went back in the afternoon to walk through Notre Dame Cathedral and enjoy it up close and personal. It is a medieval Catholic cathedral on the Ile de la Cite. It's on an island in the middle of the Seine River. The stain-glass windows are beautiful. The statuary is extraordinary, as are the paintings.
Some interesting events around Notre Dame:
2 Dec 1804: The coronation ceremony of Napoleon I and his wife Josephine, with Pope Pius VII officiating.
1831: The novel The Hunchback of Notre-Dame was published by French author Victor Hugo.
26 Aug 1944: The Te Deum Mass takes place in the cathedral to celebrate the liberation of Paris after World War II.
12 Nov 1970: The Requiem Mass of General Charles De Gaulle is held.
31 May 1980: Pope Paul II celebrates Mass.
12 Dec 2012: The Notre-Dame Cathedral begins a year long celebration of the 850th anniversary of the laying of the first building block for the cathedral.
We also spent time admiring the Eiffel Tower. It was constructed from 1887-89 as the entrance to the 1889 World's Fair. It was initially criticized by some of France's leading artists and intellectuals for its design. It is a wrought iron lattice tower; named after Gustave Eiffel, whose company designed and built the tower. It was built to last only 20 years. It was to be dismantled in 1909, when its ownership would revert of the City of Paris. The City had planned to tear it down but as the tower proved to be valuable for the communication antenna on top of it, it was allowed to remain. It has now become the symbol of Paris.
One more day in Paris tomorrow!!