The Louvre and Eiffel Tower

The drive to our flat from the hospital seemed to take forever.  The drugs that were coursing through me left me in a state of semi-consciousness; I was constantly trying to keep my one hundred pound eyelids open.  When we finally arrived, let’s just say that we weren’t in the romantic pristine part of Paris that is so often displayed in the movies.  We were in the part of Paris that requires six, I repeat, SIX locks on the door.

Paris View from Balcony
The View from our Balcony

Although the flat was more or less in the ghetto there was absolutely no denying the view was spectacular.  Paris’ iconic structures lay one after another as far as the eye could see.  Since I was recovering, I spent the next two days  either in bed or standing on the balcony dying to be walking the streets of Paris.  Jeremy was absolutely selfless, and stayed behind with me while Esther and Sam went exploring.

The Louvre
The Beautiful Louvre

On our final day in Paris I felt well enough to venture out of my pajamas and into the most beautiful city in the world.  Although I was still weak there was no way that I wasn’t going to experience Paris at all.  The four of us headed to the Louvre.

The Louvre
Jeremy and Me at the Louvre

What a spectacular place.  The building itself is a piece of art displaying the different architectural trends of Paris.  Within the walls the history is so rich, you become absolutely mesmerized as you walk from painting to painting, sculpture to sculpture, artifact to artifact.

A Wall at the Louvre
A Wall at the Louvre

Art made from the hands of Leonardo Da Vinci, Michelangelo, Vermeer, and Caravaggio.  Absolutely astounding.

Stairwell inside the Louvre
Stairwell inside the Louvre

A Little History:

The Louvre was originally built as a fortress in 1190 by Philippe Auguste.  The lower hall is all that remains today of the original fortress’ interior.  In 1364 the fortress was renovated into a royal residence for Charles V.  In 1527 most of the medieval fortress was demolished and a Renaissance palace was built for François I.  Around 1564 construction was begun on Tuileries Palace which was to be a new residence to the west of the Louvre.  Then a wing was built to connect the Louvre to Tuileries Palace in 1566.  Then in 1596 Henry IV built yet another gallery to connect to the Tuileries.

Salome Receives the Head of St. John the Baptist by Bernardino Luini
Salome Receives the Head of St. John the Baptist by Bernardino Luini

You get the point.  If I walked you through this piece by piece we would be here all day.   Each new king who came to power tweaked the Louvre making it a standing history of the glorious types of architecture that graced Europe throughout various time periods.  It is massive, and beautiful, and a treasure inside and out.

Mona Lisa
Mona Lisa and The Cow

After leaving the Louvre, we made our way to the Eiffel tower.  We didn’t feel the need to go to the top.  There was a long line and we all agreed that seeing it was enough for us.  We sat in the park right next to it and just enjoyed being in its presence.

Eiffel Tower Landscape

A Little More History:

The Eiffel Tower was built for the World’s Fair in 1889.  It was designed by Alexandre-Gustave Eiffel.  It took 2 years, 2 months, and 5 days to complete.  Four men were needed to place each rivet… and the tower contains 2,500,000 rivets!  Crazy, right?  The completed tower contains 1,710 steps, which you can still climb today.  It was the tallest structure in the world until the completion of the Chrysler Building in New York City in 1930.

Eiffel Tower
Me, Sam, and Esther at the Eiffel Tower

When I was looking at the Eiffel Tower, I didn’t know any of these facts and definitely took for granted the immense amount of work that went into building it.  No wonder they never took it down; I can’t blame them.  I’m also really glad that they didn’t.  Seeing this iconic structure is a bucket list item for sure.

Eiffel Tower at Night
Eiffel Tower at Night

After a fun day of sight-seeing and walking around it was time to head back to our flat and enjoy the light show from the beautiful Eiffel Tower.  One day in Paris is not enough.  I hope that some day we will make it back, after all I didn’t even get to eat a single chocolate croissant—it just doesn’t seem right.

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