Day 5: Catacombs, Promenade Plantee, Piere Lachaise Graveyard, and no opera :*(
Paris Travel Blog› entry 13 of 20 › view all entries
I suppose this day was a bit morbid. A mass grave, then a massive graveyard, right? It turned out to be a good idea though: Paris was ridiculously hot, and the coolness of the catacombs was welcome, as was the shade of the graveyard.
The Catacombs were absolutely excellently scary and weird and awesome and totally unlike what they were in the Deus Ex videogame I came to learn of them from. Which is probably good. It was creepy as hell though... I eventually got the sense that the crunching sound from the gravel underfoot was from me stepping on bones that had dropped off the impeccably arranged stacks around me. It was weird. I probably started walking quicker. It takes a while for you to realize that these are bones, human bones, that surround you, despite the fact that the first thing you see when you're exposed to the mass grave part of the tour is three well-lit, definitely creepy skulls just hanging out on the periphery of your vision.
I figured I'd make a trip after that down to the Bastille area, where there's an opera house that you can get damned cheap tickets at if you're a student, and also where there's the lovely Promenade Plantee, a former elevated metro track converted to a flowery and beautiful concourse, under which the gaps of its' arced structure have been filled in with art galleries, expensive furniture shops, and other such businesses. It was a fantastic walk, and I was too absorbed in it to take many pictures.
Piere Lachaise graveyard was a tad confusing, but I checked out all the graves I wanted to. Most of them are musicians: Chopin, Jim Morrison, Rossini, Edith Piaf. Victor Hugo's dad was also buried there, and Oscar Wilde was too: his grave, of course, is covered in the lipstick of the kisses of a thousand or more gay guys. He's a player even in death. Seeing Jim Morisson's grave was one of those things I had on my list of things to do before I died, so I figured I might as well get it done with.
Oh, when I was in the graveyard, the camera ended up being set on some ridiculously low framerate, making some photos way overexposed and most of them blurry. Which sucks.