I'm done. I can't walk another meter. I'm tired. I'm depressed. I'm off to Munich and will be facing my birthday tomorrow and that is depressing but glad the year is over. Today I walked all over Paris - from the Eiffel Tower to Notre Dame, through the gardens at the Louvre, up Champs to the Arc and back to my hotel about a 500m walk from the Eiffel Tower. Mostly I thought and thinking is depressing. I did go into Notre Dame and sat for a bit and thought and lit a candle because that seemed appropriate and thought about my family which depressed me more. So it's time to leave - but until I catch my flight to Munich at 5pm, here are some thoughts and pictures - so it should be an easy read and not so depressing because I tried to find something humorous every 32 cobblestones.
I have an ulcer. I'm self-diagnosing this based on what I've been told about them as well as having had one a long time ago. I'm just guessing this because I eat and then I feel like someone put a brick into my stomach as hard as possible. I've been spending my free time in my hotel rooms sort of curled up. This isn't any less depressing.... next try....
So I'm into gastronomic russian roulette - eating stuff that will either kill me through a bleeding ulcer or dying of some food born illness. So, I thought it would be awesome to have a grand plate du steak tartare or a pile of raw hamburger with a raw egg in it. Sadly, I survived but it hurt like hell. I suppose raw meat is about as close as I'll get to being a vegetarian - I mean, you don't cook either, so that is how I'm linking that together for you.
Mostly I've been feeling like the person who owns the business below. I didn't see a lot of hope here.
I went shopping for my girls and learned that they mix the luxe stuff with the regular stuff. When the sales girl asks if you want tights with the outfit - be sure to ask if those tights are $35. I also should have asked about the sweater too because that was $85. I won't feed my daughters for a bit because they really need to get some solid wear out of this stuff. I'll have Sada in the tights probably 3-4 times a week.
So yea, here's a blind guy. I took his picture along the Rue de Rivoli - right next to the Louvre. I just wanted you to note the style of people begging in Paris. Solid effort.
I went to this store - the Galleries Lafayette. I think it's just one gallery. I sort of was able to tell which level the good stuff was on based on the age, shape and style of the people on the floor - they don't even need signs just look for the clues. They call things like 'Modern Style' which means '50+ women this is your etage!'. I think they had another one they called 'Contemporary Fashion' which I took to be 'stuff for less money for larger sized women'. I did get some cashmere sweaters here. The bank called me as I was at the register to tell me they think my card has been stolen and is being used to buy a ridiculous amount of stuff in a hour period. Charge it si vous plait. The picture below is the perfume floor - it goes way further than you can see. If you aspire to be a perfume girl, this is the Varisty field. ladies. I saw some of the team captains from the 1956 team. Apparently they don't change the lineup often.
Here's the ceiling of the store. The seduction level is #3 I think. In America you wouldn't associate pajamas with seduction. On the fancy level you can get champagne. On the cheaper levels they have McDonalds.
Here's the view from my hotel room - I'm guessing I'm on the seduction level of my hotel.
Here's a bit of a panoramic view - not great but ok.
Then I just walked - the is a national police building.
Then as I walked, I saw this banner advertising all of the cool jobs you could have working for the French Government: a fireman, guy with automatic weapon, bomb-squad, police officer with a mean dog (though I'd really expect to have the French to have a poodle or something fluffier and with 'style') and then you see this lady with a phone. I'm not sure if that is a weapon or not.
Then the cooler jobs continue until you get to the end and there's just a lady with brochures.
But wait, I missed a few more: you can be a bureaucrat or a roller derby guy. WhOOO WHOOOO. C'est dommage.
Then I went to church but I didn't see any hunchbacks. There are more things to buy in this church than Wal Mart. Candles are 2 or 5 euro. Postcards are 1. DVDs are 20, coins are .50, to see the church finance dept was 3 euro and to go to the top is 7. I'm not sure which one saves you, but I went with the candle for 2 euro, though I might burn in some middle area because I put 1.50 euro into the suggested donation box - I thought it was overpriced.
Here's the inside -
and the 5 euro suggested donation candle. I don't think they were scented. Some lavender would have been special - or maybe the Yankee Candle Pumpkin Spice scent.
then I walked here but I'm sort of posting these out of order because I think I walked over this before getting to the wall of various French occupations after this bridge.
I'll write more but wanted to get this out. I'm in Munich now.