Day 2 SUNDAY 1st MARCH 2009
On the first Sunday of each month you are able to enter the Louvre for free, a very useful nugget of information I found prior to our trip, so we set off early and this worked to our advantage as we avoided the queues. From previous visits I’d discovered that due to the size of the building it was a tiring museum so my aim was for the girls to see the ‘best bits’ before they waned. We found the Mona Lisa, the Venus de Milo, the Greek Statues and the best bit by far – the Egyptian Mummies. As we sat down and looked around, queued and sat down some more we finally succumbed to cake in the café. At this point I was very relieved we didn’t pay for entry as four soft drinks and three cakes cost 36€, outrageous!About three hours later, we needed some fresh air so we headed out of the museum to sit in the sunshine and absorb the ambience. We set off, map in hand and stumbled across a small group of musicians who were playing a free concert in a small square, we stood and listened for a while enjoying the ambiance.
Several souvenior shops and a miniture pink Eiffel Tower later, we were at l’opera, in a café eating our lunch. It was Sunday and no shops were open and only a few restaurants but it was good to see Paris a little quieter.
My plan was to walk up to Montmartre to show the girls the Moulin Rouge, although they were too young to go in they loved the film! After which we headed over to the Sacre Coeur.So after a quick look at the building with the windmill on the top and a short, sharp, fast walk, I gave my children a brief education on the ‘Soho of Paris’. (Dirty men paying dirty ladies to do dirty business!).We quickly walked on until I felt comfortable enough to stop at a café and do some people watching – these people didn’t evoke quite so many questions as the people from where we’d just been! Ella now fluent in one phrase ordered herself a glass of cold milk!Only comment about the area was made by Izzie, and I quote ‘very rude and inappropriate’ which made me smile!
As we made our way up a picturesque cobbled street where Izzie took it upon herself to model many a beret whilst chattering in a rather silly accent. The girls felt the need to ride the traditional carousel before we walked up the steps to the beautiful church of the Sacred Heart. The views from the top were amazing. The church was incredibly beautiful and as I love visiting churches this definitely goes down as the best so far. Once inside, I was moved by the atmosphere of the service taking place. The girls were surprised by the people who just dropped to their knees to pray. Izzie found it depressing and asked what the people in the confession boxes were doing; I suggested that they were the ‘dirty men who paid the dirty women to do the dirty business’ confessing – Oh how we chuckled!
We had a quick thrill on leaving the church as two limos pulled up and in a hustle of people, someone famous got out. We weren’t sure who he was but we stood and watched along with the people who obviously did know who it was! We made our way back down using the outside lift and as the rain started to pour we decided it was time to soak the feet and head back to the hotel – I am a little ashamed to say we ate Macdonalds on way too. See tips for my lame excuse why. Eating out in Paris is expensive – be realistic!