photo of the day (paris day five)

We slept in a bit this morning and then headed over to the Ile de la Cite to see Le Marché aux Oiseaux.

Every other day of the week the Marché Aux Fleurs is filled, as it’s name indicates, with flowers. On Sunday, the market is transformed into Le Marché aux Oiseaux and it is filled with small animals and birds.

It should have be called “Le Marché aux Cuteness” as every corner of the market was filled with birds, bunnies, gerbils, hamsters and even chipmunks.

Even the children were cute. I don’t know who is more yummy in this picture — la jeune fille or le lapin.

I know the kids and I could have stayed in the market and coo’ed and ooh’ed over all the cuteness all morning.

If I could have managed it, I would have stuffed a bunny or two in my suitcase (and not mentioned the night when I had some lovely lapin for dinner.)

With the cuteness quota for the day completely satisfied, we headed on to other things.

I don’t know how we managed but I didn’t get my croissant and coffee this morning. Quelle horreur! But we found a place that served brunch and my coffee was waiting for me there. Much better, thanks.

After our meal, I thought we would head over to the Jardin des Plants, but as we found ourselves walking on the street alongside Notre Dame, I noticed that the line to the tower was relatively short. I hadn’t climbed the tower on my last visit to Paris and I wanted to get up close to the famous Gargoyles. We got on line and spent some time chatting with a mother and daughter from Massachusetts who were celebrating the daughter’s 16th birthday in Paris.

I don’t know what I was thinking but I’m glad I really wasn’t thinking. Because when they handed us a brochure about the tower just as we were about to enter, I noticed the part about the 400 step climb to the top. No lift. I guess elevators weren’t in fashion back in the 1100s. Too late to turn back now and so the kids and I (Zki wisely stayed behind) started climbing the narrow, winding stairs to the top. Oh my. All I can say is I had moments of thinking, “Will I make it? Will this staircase ever end?”

If you are not in shape, do not attempt this climb. It is a heart attack waiting to happen. Seriously. If you are, the view is worth the climb.

At least I think it was worth it, I’m not so sure about the kids.

Just so you don’t think the first 255 steps was enough, there was more. Another 15o steps or so to the very top. We had a choice. We could have gone back down from there, but we are Pszenitkis and we pressed on.

It was sunny and hot up on the highest level of the Notre Dame tower and so we didn’t dawdle long before making the seemingly endless descent down the winding stairs. I think that if Clare never sees another spiral staircase in her lifetime, it will be too soon. I emerged from the narrow staircase, exhilarated and happy that I had made the effort.

After all those stairs, some sorbet and a café glacé  (you can’t get iced coffee many places in Paris so I was so happy to find it on the menu at this place) was in order and then back to the hotel to rest and clean up before dinner.

We had dinner at a restaurant that Zki and I had liked when we were in Paris for my birthday trip, La Fourmi Ailee. Again, it was lovely. Then we wandered around the Latin Quarter and St. Germain and looked for some dessert.

I wanted to see if we could find a Lauderee and get some Macarons, but c’est dommage, il etait fermé (closed.) Maybe tomorrow? Another trip to Amorino for some gelato would have to suffice.

Time to call it a night. Mes pieds sont tres fatigué! Tomorrow is our last day in Paris and while I’m not happy about having to leave, I really miss my puppies at home.

~ by photobella on 24 May, 2009.

One Response to “photo of the day (paris day five)”

  1. Love the b+w shots from up high. (Well, that and everything else about Paris…)

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