Sunday, July 30, 2017

The Jarvis Holiday - Louvre and Tuileries - Birds and Rats

Thursday, July 27th

Eric and I took an early morning walk to the UNESCO building for his presentation. When we passed by Trocadero, they were still trimming the verge and cleaning the algae off the bottom of the fountain. (See the photos I sent from Wednesday). It was obviously not a simple taskt --a two day job.
Wow, you wonder how much time and effort it takes to keep all of the Paris Parks looking ship-shape.
We were temporarily detained at the Eiffel Tower as they were doing a film shoot for Taxi 5 along the roads in front of the Tower.

Eric's presentation went well and afterwords, we had a chance to view the UNESCO buildings from the top floor. Feels a bit like a communist era building, with very strange subterranean gardens. Not exactly a beautiful building, but functional. At least the art work inside is interesting and beautiful and reflects their desire to bring together the people of the world through education and history. There is an interesting piece of Indigenous Art from Canada in the room where ERic spoke. I'll try to post it on Facebook.

Eric spent the afternoon at the conference, while I went home to take the kids to the Louvre and Tuileries. The teenagers wanted to go inside the Louvre, which was the last place Hebe wanted to go. 

While they headed there to explore, Hebe and I went to the Tuileries gardens to play. She spent one hour on the playground equipment, then wanted to go and see the carnival rides. She checked out every single one, commenting on whether or not she could do it (too scary, for babies, too wet, etc), before deciding on this obstacle course adventure called Crazy Space.

... Crazy Space ...

Here is Hebe's assessment of the ride.  
That means a lot since her usual response to most things is two thumbs down.  I guess there is still room for improvement since it only got one thumb up.

On our way back to the Louvre to meet up with the teenagers, we found the bird man.  
He had the entire park of pigeons around him.  His pockets were filled with bird seed and he was giving us quite a show with how he could make the birds dance around him and finally sit on his hands, arms or shoulders.  
He waved to Hebe and invited her over, I think to please the crowd.  
He put out her arms, then filled her hands with seeds.  
I think I even see her giving me a thumbs up.  
Wow.  
Twice in one day.
The Jarvii all regrouped in front of the Louvre, including Eric. It was after 6 p.m. and people were clearing out of the square so we sat to enjoy the view. I personally was exhausted and understood why after checking my step counter - over 20.000 steps. Almost a record for me.

After about a 15 min rest, a well dressed waiter came over to announce that the cafe was closed, but would reopen in 30 minutes. He could serve us at that time. CODE FOR: get out of here. These chairs belong to someone else. You aren't allowed to sit in these seats. Although quite frankly there was no sign indicating the chairs belonged to anyone. They appeared to be "public". Oh well. We all obliged him and Eric encouraged him by indicating how very generous the french people were. (I however was thinking how absolutely crazy it was that we were not allow us to sit in empty chairs when no one was around.)

We have had a lot of problems with chairs throughout Paris. We were told off by some police officers in the Jardins de Luxembourg for moving public chairs into the shade - they had to stay along the edges of the garden only. Were were also told yesterday by the police to take our feet off the opposite chair while riding the train. I guess we haven't learned the rules of chairs in France, because there clearly are some and we are not yet educated on this matter.


We decided to head to the Latin Quarter for dinner after stopping by Notre Dame for a quick look.


I love this photo of Hebe because it looks like she has photoshopped in front of the cathedral.

BUT NO, this is a real photo!


As if Hebe hadn't had her fill of birds today, a lonely pigeon flew by at Notre Dame
and landed right on top of Hebe's head for a quick rest.  
This made us all laugh.

After some indecision, we finally decided on crepes for dinner.  

The one of the left is Chevre and tomatoes for Cathy, and the one on the right is Hebe's Bacon and Egg.  

We headed with our crepes and an orangina in hand to the nearby St Julien de Pauvre church gardens for dinner.  

I never mind sharing a meal with the poor (pauvre) but our dinner companions made my skin crawl.  As we were sitting on the park benches eating when Catie suddenly exclaimed, "there's a rat".  She was in fact very correct.

We could hear a lot of noise coming from the hedge and on closer inspection, we found that we were sharing the park with a lot of guests.  The park was infected with rats.  I mean infested.  Check out the image below where you will see them in search of an evening meal.  To say that we spent just a short visit here would be un understatement.  Rats in Paris are to be expected, but bold enough and in such numbers to feel comfortable joining us for dinner was a bit much for even me.

On our way through the Latin Quarter, Hebe made a request.  The first demand for a "thing" other than ice cream since we arrived in Europe.  Her  desire was for a pink beret.
We obliged her, which just made her day.  Here she is looking French and so very happy.


Love,

Catherine

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