The tippy top of the Eiffel tower
Paris Travel Blog› entry 5 of 5 › view all entries
I awoke this morning a
little sad, almost at an end to a great holiday. Today we hoped to cover The Tokyo museum, go to the tippy
top of the Eiffel tower and lazy about in a park while we picnic’ed. To begin with the museum idea went out
the window as the Tokyo museum isn’t open on Mondays. There are some that are closed on Sundays and others closed
on Monday’s. Anyway, we scrapped
that idea. We grabbed fresh
baguette and croissants. The
croissants for breakfast and the baguette to make sandwiches for our
Paris buddy got me my stamps for my beloved postcards aswell, score. I almost forgot about them.
We walked from Rue Charlot to Place des Vosages, via a café for some coffee. We bumped into another friend while we were doing as the Parisian’s do sipping our coffee. She had a friend with her who was trapped in Paris due to the volcano ash. She’s a teacher so was missing the start of term and unable to get a flight out until two weeks later. Loving the extended stay but also frustrated at the situation. Lucky I have the Eurostar. I hear news that everyone is going crazy over Eurostar and Euro-tunnel tickets. The trip home tonight is going to be crazy.
Lenotre was our next
stop. We just wanted to Oogle the
The metro to the
Eiffel tower was a long journey and the coffee had managed to work its way
through me. Faced with a long
queue into the tower, I decided to brave it and use a portaloo. I queued, it was occupied and one
person in front of me. I had
perfume, tissue and scarf in hand.
We waited and waited and waited.
This didn’t give me much confidence about the state that it would be
in. I was almost beginning to
worry about why the person taking so long. Eventually the doors open and the guy looking very confused
come out, glancing back a few times.
The doors close and the toilets washes and freshens itself
automatically. Then the green
light pings and it is ready to use.
The guy in front of me kindly lets me go first seeing as I am a
lady. I walk in. I push the close button and I look for
a manual lock? No manually lock just an automatic one.
Continue onto the
tower, passing soldiers and policemen all armed with heavy weapons. We arrive and join the queue with a
minimum 45 min wait. Harassed by
the vendors selling water and miniature Eiffel towers as they approach us in
the queue but also have a mat laid out on the floor in the middle of the
area. After a while a few policemen
on bikes come riding through, all the illegal vendors pick up their stash and
run off in all directions like mice.
It doesn’t last long as the vendors come back after 10 mins and the
coast is clear. The queue snakes
along and we get there in 30mins.
We spend 3hrs up here in total and decide to chill out over the bridge where there is a stretch of grass. We cross the bridge and set out camp on a nice bit of grass. There a small kids rolling around on the hill around us and a bunch of teenage kids throwing each other into the fountain. Clearly we were sitting on the kids side and the other side we could see adults enjoying the sun and reading their books calmly and quietly. We have our lunch here.
We then head up the stairs to watch the kids that have formed a ramp and are performing stunts on their bikes and skates.
More walking, we decide… or should I say
Paris buddy decides that it would be a good idea to walk to Le Louvre. It is a looooooooong walk, my soles of
my feet are again beginning to feel the burn. We pass the musee a la mode (fashion museum) and Petite
Palais. We reach Place de la Concorde,
where we have to cross what feels like a million roads.
Only 20mins to pack before I have to catch
a taxi to Gare du Nord. We hit the
station at 8.45pm, huffed and puffed from the race to get here. The queue is horrific and the chaos
around us does not give me the confidence that the train will depart on
time. The queue to check in,
the queue to French border control, then UK border control followed by security
is a long process. The people are
impatient and rude and my feet get run over several times but huge suitcases. Just get me back to London already,
jeez! Eventually make it onto the
platform, where I have to walk from carriage 16 all the way along to carriage
2. The announcement is made that
the train will depart shortly so I rush to get on.
Two very privileged young kids occupy the two seats on the opposite side of the aisle to me. They taunt me with the smell of two huge cheese burgers and two large cans of orangina. Each bite, each slurp, glug glug glug, makes my stomach rumble. Get me home quick!