11 November 2015

Paris Trip 6

Number one on my list of must-see-museums in Paris is the Louvre. And that is where we are headed today!

We know it will be crowded, as we have seen the crowds around the entrance before, so we leave our hotel by 8 am to make it to the 9 am opening. We follow Rick Steves' advice and enter from the underground metro stop.

We head straight for the Mona Lisa (well, sort of straight, we got a little lost in the maze that is the Louvre).

On the way to the Mona Lisa, we pass the marble Greek sculpture of the goddess of love and beauty, Venus de Milo (c. 100 bce).

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The Mona Lisa room was not terribly crowded, and we were able to get right up front to the roped-off area quickly.

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I turned and snapped a photo of people behind us:

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I have always liked sphinxes. This the the Grand Sphinx, c. 2600 bce.

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Statue du dieu Horus, Egyptian, 1069 - 664 bce

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Sphinxes.

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Base and feet of a colossus, Amenophis III, 1391-1353.

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Here is John trying to read the writing on the sarcophagus of Ramesses III (12th century bce).

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(If you want more information on these Egyptian antiquities, go here.)

Lobby of the Louvre.

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After close to a little under two hours, we left the amazing Louvre. Back to the metro. And to here, the photo below. I love this shot. (The French have a fondness for Franklin Roosevelt.)

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Our next stop is the Maritime Museum. We sat in the courtyard next to this museum and shared a messy caramel crepe. Suddenly there is a commotion off to the left, coming up the stairs to the square. With music, a group of dancers appears.

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They come closer.

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They walked off to the right.

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How fun! Now into the museum. Our museum pass included audio guides that were a real help. We roamed the rooms and looked at models of boats, photos of boats, and other maritime paraphernalia.

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This sculpture came from a boat.

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A glimpse of the Eiffel Tower through a window at the Maritime Museum.

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A diving suit, used in the Seine, 1803.

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We broke for lunch of pizza and wine and dessert and coffee, then visited the Egouts de Paris. That means: the sewer system. Stinky! Covered my nose the whole time. Not a great idea after lunch. Granted, it was interesting, and a grand undertaking over the years to assure the health of the city of Paris, but . . . !

It was dark in the sewers. I took few photos. But did try to get a photo of a rat – a live rat! – that scurried down this tunnel:

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(Better photos of the interesting sewer museum are here.)

Back up out of the sewers. Whew, fresh air. The exit from the sewers is down a barely-visible stairwell off the to left. Most people never see it.

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Our tired feet (and the metro) take us back to our hotel and wine, bread, and cheese. Ah, love Paris.

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