Wednesday, January 23, 2008

We'll Always Have Paris...

On Christmas day we took the train from Strasbourg to Paris and then a cab from the train station to our hotel. We had read reviews of our hotel that included comments about the size of the lift (elevator), but it was even smaller than we could have imagined. It was deep enough that I could stand with my back against the rear wall and barely have the door close, and wide enough that Taylor and I could squeeze in side by side.

There was a Metro (subway) stop a few blocks from our hotel, and after we got settled in we figured out how to get to the Eiffel Tower. We got there around 4 pm and there were long, winding lines. The shortest line, by far, was the one for the stairs, so after about a half hour in line we began our ascent. There are two platforms accessible by stairs - the first is about 60 meters high, and the second about 120. There are a total of 704 steps from the ground to the second level. It was beginning to get dark by the time we reached the first platform, and was completely dark by the time we got to the second platform. There is an observation tower accessible only by an elevator from the second platform, but the line was long, it was dark, and it had been a long day, so we did not go to the top.

By the time we got back to the area where our hotel was located and found a restaurant open it was nearly 9:00. Europeans eat late, and the restaurant was busy, but we had a really nice Christmas dinner. The food we ate in France and Germany was good, and the desserts in France were outstanding. More on Paris in the next post.

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