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devil duck

Paris stuff

We got a late start this morning: two other maudite Americains were ahead of me in line for the shower, and we spent some time looking for a bank to cash a traveller's check. So by the time we reached Notre Dame, there were enormous lines of tourists -- one for the tower tour, and one for the church proper. The latter line, however, moved fairly quickly, and we got inside within a few minutes. Several photographs -- the end of the first roll and the beginning of the second -- of tombs, early 14c. painted wooden sculptures of the life of Christ, stained glass windows, etc. We stepped into the line for the towers, but when after 15 minutes we had only moved a fifth of the way to the door, we gave up and went in search of lunch. It was drizzling, so we sat indoors until, all at once, four people at three adjacent tables lit up, and shalmestere asked the waiter to move us outside, where there was only traffic noise and car exhaust to deal with (much preferable to both of us). After lunch, we returned to l'Ile de la Cité to visit the Crypte Archaeologique (the Gallo-Roman and medieval ruins underneath the square in front of Notre Dame), the Sainte-Chapelle, and the Conciergerie. I hadn't been to the Conciergerie on my previous visit to Paris: it started life as a Gallo-Roman fort, then a Merovingian palace, then Capetian,... The visible remains are largely 14th century, but were re-used as a prison for centuries, most notably during the French Revolution.

At some point we realized that the Notre Dame Treasury, which we had skipped because it had an admission fee and a guidebook said it was mostly ecclesiastical vestments, also contained St-Louis's shirt. So we'll have to go back to Notre Dame some other day, first thing in the morning before the lines form.

Lunch c. 30€
Books & cards c. 30€
Dinner c. 13€