4.30.09 Paris Fun
Weâ€™ve had a great time exploring this beguiling city with Ned! Here some of our favorite memories:
Eiffel Tower: Climbing 668 steps to the 2nd level (highest steps allowed)- beautiful view
Champs-Elysee: Biked Parisâ€™ busiest main road until bikes were restricted at the Lâ€™Arc de Triomphe- that got our adrenaline pumping! No special lanes for bikers with lots of traffic, but too many people on the promenade to bike there.
Croissants et croissants au chocolat from the patisserie each biking morning at Rue de Passy, just before the long downhill to the Eiffel Tower
Versailles: Impressive! Enjoyed the gardens and rowing our own boat on the Grand Canal. Picnic lunch on the Rick Stevesâ€™ recommended overlook of the Royal Drive. Tour of the palace. Figured out the Metro vs. the RER train stations and map. Thought most interesting was the use of the addictive â€śgood lifeâ€ť as a way of controlling underlings.
Biking: Most mornings weâ€™d bike from the campground, to the shortcut road, to the Avenue de la Hippodrome straight east to Avenue de Passy to the bridge by the Eiffel Tower. About 4 miles, more difficult getting back because of one-way roads, but a lovely ride most of the way.
Playing Chicken with the Paris Traffic: we had all sorts of experiences, at crosswalks typically, that help teach life lessons. Quick light changes, aggressive traffic, turning buses, and blatant light running- whew!
Food!: Lunch at a nice cafĂ© along the Champs-Ellysees, delicious gourmet picnic lunch by nice lady near Eiffel Tower; baguettes, pate, and French cheese at Versailles (and everywhere); shopping in the local markets and stores
Wine! French wine can be found for 2E to about 15E and is wonderful!
Fat Tire Bikes: Owned by an Austin, Texan, this bike tour and rental shop (15E for day, 50E for week, includes lock & helmet) near the Eiffel Tower were friendly and had internet computers (1E for every 10 minutes). Signs like I have in Ciao Baby (â€śDonâ€™t mess with Texas Womenâ€ť) and the Texas flag, and hearing â€śyâ€™allâ€ť made us feel at home in Paris