Paris Visit Summer 2006

Paris Day 6: May 19

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Paris Map

After taking the Metro to Les Halles, I walked up the stairs and discovered wild bovine in the streets of downtown Paris! So I snapped a picture of these colorful cows, mostly for Robin.

This is St-Eustache, which I did not go in. It's inside is modeled on Notre-Dame. Interestingly, Molière was buried here. The statue out front that you can see is a giant head!

This neat building is the Bourse du Commerce, housing a commodities market among other things.

The world's busiest subway station, along with numerous shops, theatres, and an arts pavillion are located here at the Forum des Halles.

I decided to go to this café for lunch, in the Square des Innocents. The meal was so fully French that I had to capture it on film. Here is my café au lait with a quiche lorraine. The quiche was not as good as at Les Deux Magots, but pretty good none the less.

This was the view from the café. I had no idea what it was at the time, and didn't think to check my guide book because Paris if filled with neat statues and fountains. This is the Fontaine des Innocents, one of the main landmarks for Les Halles.

I finally got to the George Pompidou Center. The building is built inside out, and painted with bright colors corresponding to its function. The escalators are painted white (and red below), going up to the top floor.

This is the inside of the elevator shaft, which could be seen on the outside of the building. Next to that is the a huge piece of (moving) art.

On the right is one of the many weird pieces of modern art. This room is viewed through colored screens. Yeah, I don't get it either. This room wasn't as cool as the all pink room, with the 5 foot high-heel. The center shows a café located on the top floor. On the left is a mobius strip, but I'll bet the artist doesn't know that. (A mobius strip is a 2 dimensional object that can only exist in 3 dimensions. If you trace the edge all the way around, you will cover the entire surfact and come back to the starting position, hence 2 dimensional. Klein bottles are 3D objects that can only exist in 4D. See here for more, also makes a great present!)

I walked to the Ile de la Cité, to wait in line at Notre-Dame for the tower tour. The line took 45 minutes or so, which would have been fine except for the rain, wind, and whiny Americans next to me. Oh well. The tour was interesting. It took around 400 steps to get to the top, and by top I mean the very top of Notre-Dame. The view was fantastic, and they also show off the big bell, now unused. This of course is the natural habitat of Quasimodo, but I didn't see him. All in all, pretty windy and cold.

This is the view of Notre-Dame's South window from my restaurant table. I ordered Duck Foie Gras, white and rouge wine, Mussels Moulinere, and a French coffee. All delicious.

Afterwards I wandered around St. Germain de Prés again. I saw this Star Wars store, which was a whole shop of just Star Wars figures! Kinda cool and scary. On my way home, I bought a bagette and Camembert from a boulangiere, and an eggroll and a samosa from a chinese food restaurant just for fun. The bread and cheese was far, far superior.

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