Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Oi Oi Paris: Jour 3

Alice and I were kind of exhausted from the first two days of non-stop sightseeing, so we got a slower start on Wednesday and walked through the outdoor farmers' market near her neighborhood. The market is huge, and they not only sell fruit and vegetables, but also meat, whole fish, kids' toys, shoes, clothes, and cheese. The vendors will call out what they're selling and the price, to try to entice you to stop and buy something. All the produce looked so delicious, so we stopped at a stand and I used my 10 words of French to ask for two figs - these figs were the size of peaches, with dark pink flesh inside, and Alice and I each bit into one and ate it as we walked back through the market. So delish.

We then walked to Les Invalides, which contains the Musee de l'Armee with all the military history, armor, swords, guns, cannons, etc., of France. Man, France has really fought in a lot of wars. The old armor was pretty cool at first, and some of the pistols and muskets are beautifully ornate, but after a while it is just tiring to read about military conflicts.

The recognizable golden dome of les Invalides.

Some beautiful pistols from back in the day.
My favorite part of les Invalides was Napoleon's tomb. It's in this circular room with maybe 6 different offshoots holding other people's tombs, and at the back there's this massive altar, accented with lots of gold, several stories high. But the real attraction is the tomb itself, a massive porphyry tomb recessed into the ground, surrounded by a ring of giant female statues. It was pretty incredible. You could probably fit 50 Napoleons into this thing.
Looking down at Napoleon's tomb from the upper floor. There was also a huge dome above it.

Me standing behind the tomb. It really is that giant.
That night we decided to stay in and cook dinner for Alice's husband Kevin, who was at work every day while we played. We stopped at this supermarket which is part of a huge department store - it has a huge yogurt section and tons of cheese as well. Alice picked out a soft cheese for us to eat, which I proceeded to drop on the floor in a liquidy splatter, in the crowded lines behind the register. Ugh. I got a replacement and it was delicious on a baguette. Apparently there are many different kinds of baguette in France as well, and people really do walk around with baguettes all the time. Awesome.

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