Puddles in Paris

Puddles in Paris (title by a 9 year old)

This is a grey, grey day in the skies of Paris.

We have ventured out to see some art, and thought it wasn’t that cold. After all – this is meant to be summer in Paris.

By the time we emerge from the Metro we are cold, and we have no jumper or umbrella. We walk to Ponte des Arts, also known as the Bridge of Love which spans over the River Seine.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Ponte des Arts #1

Wrapped in my Paris scarf we head opposite the Louvre Museum of Art.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Louvre courtyard

Explorason LOVES his art. He is so excited to see the Mona Lisa and races across the courtyard.  Behind is the main entrance where the pyramid glass centre is.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Louvre entry

Now let me give you a ticket tip.

Keep walking.

Walk past this area and behind are some hedges.

Walk along the River Seine inside section of these hedges between the building and the hedges.

Here you will find some lion statues.

Turn left and there is a discrete entrance.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Louvre – fun photography

Go in. There is no wait to buy tickets here, where at the pyramids you can wait two hours !
We came across the rudest staff lady waiting to let people in and out.

She sat reading her book.

Completely uninterested in her job.

When I asked her where the Mona Lisa was in my pathetic French (which I am sure she gets asked 50 times a day) she pointed and told me behind the wall.

Later I came back to ask her a question and she replied “why bother to ask, you don’t believe me! – huh?).

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Exploramum and Explorason – Louvre inside

Anyway, we find our way behind the wall and up the stairs and past the big central urn.

We fight the crazed crowd like they are waiting for an autograph from a movie star.

The pushing and shoving is unbelievable.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Louvre – Mona Lisa

We help a man with his daughter who is special needs so she can get out of the pram and hold her so she can see the Mona Lisa.

He is struggling.  “Why are people like this?” Explorason asks.

So he waits and a nice lady lets him in and he has his photo.

Like most kids and even some adults, he is amazed at how small the painting is.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Louvre – Mona madness

The grey clouds loom outsides and the heavens burst and we are glad to be inside and not outside.

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Exploramum and Explorason – outside brews a storm at the Louvre

I feel for those lined up outside.
We wanted to go downstairs, but the grumpy lady at the door refused to give us instructions to get there when we went back.

How does this woman keep a job I wonder?

So we head back upstairs and back past the urn and to a door on the left.

This leads to a giant staircase and down we go.

Success! Here is the room we were looking for.

Michelangelo’s statues are before us in all their glory.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Louvre – basement #1

We have some fun posing for the statues.  Hmm – is he holding a mobile / cell phone we ask ???

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Exploramum and Explorason – Louvre – basement #2

‘Cupid’s Kiss’ has a throng of people around it as he and Psyche are embraced in love.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Louvre – basement Cupid’s Kiss

We don’t want to leave. There is so much to see.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Louvre – basement #4

There is a glass lift in a cylinder shape with an open top and we ride it to the ground floor.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Louvre – cylindrical open lift

The rain has stopped and it is already mid afternoon, so we head outside again.

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Exploramum and Explorason – leaving the Louvre

We have a bit a bit more fun with photos.

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Exploramum and Explorason – more fun photos in the courtyard of the Louvre

We walk back to head over the “Bridge of Love” and there are buskers playing the accordion.  We love this little guy!

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Exploramum and Explorason – Ponte des Arts #2 – little musician

An artist asks Explorason if he would draw his caricature and we buy it only if we like it, so we agree.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Ponte des Arts does art

But to be honest it looked a bit like a cross between “Mad” magazine, and Rod Stewart, and so we didn’t buy it.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Ponte des Arts – posing

There are padlocks for sale, and of course art.

Many lovers are buying locks and adding them to the bridge.

Part of this bridge recently del away on one side with the weight of the locks and is fenced off.

Locks are dated, and I find it interesting that everywhere I look they are 2014.

Which means all the old locks are cut off.

I see people searching in vain through looked sections – their lock has been cut off. So much for eternal love.
So we skip over a few puddles, and walk along the side of the River Seine.

Skipping, singing and jumping over puddles – just Explorason and me.

It was a really free and fun time.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Ponte des Arts – paintings for sale

Next, we wait in line to climb Notre Dame.

We had been meaning to come in the morning, but it was too wet earlier. We have been told to get there at 9:00 to 9:30 a.m. and there is no wait, so that might be a tip for a few of you.

You go up in groups of about 20 people at a time. Part way up the steps you buy your tickets, and again children are entered for free.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Notre Dame – view from top #1

There are 387 steps so you ned to be fit, and you go around and around.

The grey skies look dramatic behind the protective gargoyles and we talk about the novel where Quazemodo was legend to live here.

Check out the queue below to get not the cathedral – this is free for all so it has a huge line-up, but the line-up moves fast so they tell me.

Explorason has been really eager to come here, and was quite excited. I’m pleased he enjoys history and exploring, as it makes world education easy.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Notre Dame – view from top #2

There are two levels when you go up the tower.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Notre Dame – view from top #3

At the centre level you get to see the roof-top of the cathedral and the gargoyles and angels in detail.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Notre Dame – view from top #4

The River Seine is below.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Notre Dame – view from top #5

We get to the top of Notre Dame and another side of the city is exposed.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Notre Dame – view from top #6

We talk about how there are shells in the stone work.

We find this really interesting.

This is all part of world education.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Notre Dame – shells

At the top it is cold and windy.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Notre Dame – view from top #7

We are pleased we came, but can’t wait to get down.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Notre Dame – view from top #8

The detail is magnificent wherever you look.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Hotel de Ville #1

We try to find our Metro station to get back “home” to our AirBnB apartment and end up back at Hotel de Ville.

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Exploramum and Explorason – Hotel de Ville #2

We are heading back to meet our friend and prepare a picnic for tonight – under the Eiffel Tower!

 

 

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