It's a beautiful cemetary, and massive. It was rainy and we were too tired to see it all, but we did see Edith Piaf's grave (not the one above, that's just some beautiful sampling of what was around us).
We got back on the bus and headed to the Marais area, where we explored a bit before being deluged by a rainstorm that the weather service promised wouldn't happen. I drooled my way through Antik Batik
and we finally hid from the rain (it was the one day we didn't bring an umbrella) in a cafe.
David had the escargot. I wanted to try but just couldn't get myself to do it. My stomach drew the line. He loved it, however.
We then walked to Sainte-Chappelle
It was stunning. A private church made just for the king, and encased entirely in stained glass.
I am so glad we didn't miss this place. It was filled with people but there was a stillness, a silence of awe at the beauty of what we were seeing.
The chapel dates all the way back to 1248 and is in amazing condition. It is utterly shocking that it somehow survived the French Revolution. Some of the stonework outside was pulled down but somehow the people had the sense not to destroy this incredible work of art.
Our pretty subway entrance on the Bastille
We had breakfast on our last day at this cafe on the Bastille. We were fooled by the term "French Toast" on the marquis. When a plate of regular toasted white bread appeared at our table, we realized our folly.
There was a craft fair at the marketplace that morning and I was able to get some cool and unique Christmas presents.
We then went to take drooly pictures to remember the food at Le Notre.
We got lots of chocolates here to take to our co-workers. They were very happy. Here's the weird, bizarre happy ending to the Le Notre story: upon returning home and bemoaning our missing their food, we found out that, for reasons beyond my ability to comprehend, there is an official Le Notre bakery at the Paris Las Vegas resort, WHERE WE ARE GOING THIS VERY WEEKEND. So in but a few days time, we are going to get the exquisite luxury of gorging on these delicious baked goods. I really don't know if it'll be as good as the one in Paris but here's hoping.
So it was at this time that we got our belongings and sadly left our lovely apartment behind to get to the airport. A lovely man drove us who was very kind and we worked hard on understanding each other in French. We got to the Air France counter, the requisite 3 hours early, to discover our seats had been given away and the flight was overbooked. Wait...what? Yeah, apparently that happens. Obviously we were not dying to get back to Los Angeles immediately, so we volunteered to be bumped. A very kind Air France man offered us Business Class and Air France VOUCHERS if we returned home the following morning. Um, YES!
So...we had a small reprieve. We were sent to a Holiday Inn Express in the tiny airport town of Roissy-en-France (BEST NAME EVER!). The only thing to do in town was a small local theatre that was offering a live music performance called Amoyal Et Buffo
. A MIME SHOW. You'd better believe we were right on that. It was amazing to sit in this small town hall auditiorium and hear the mayor speak about how proud they were of their community and then hear classical music being butchered by mime antics. It was such a perfectly French, perfectly surreal evening, and a hilarious way to end the trip.
Can we talk for a moment about Business Class?
HAVE MERCY. It's going to be hard to ever go on a transatlantic flight in Cattle Torture Class again after experiencing the joys of Business Class. Fully reclining automated bed seat with built-in massager, two four-course meals with extremely expensive wines and champagnes, a travel kit with Clarins facial creme, silk socks, room to actually fit one's whole body, etc etc etc. It was fancypants. Always try to get yourself bumped, my friends.
It was hard to leave but it was less hard knowing we have flight vouchers that we have to use in the next year. And we will use them. We're not sure exactly what it will be, but the adventure continues in 2009.