Part 1: Paris, France


Navigation Links
 Trip Home Page     


The Experience

To get to Paris, we needed to get from San Diego to LAX.  There is no real easy way to do that, so our traveling partners Jim and Michele arranged for a car to take us there.  We elected to leave at 1430 for a 2130 flight, which seems too conservative, but given the flaky traffic in the LA basin, there was no way to tell how long the 120 miles would take.  But, traffic was good to us, and we spent the extra time in LAX eating and hanging out.

The Photos

The photos below are what we saw.

Our plane arrives from Tahiti as part of a normally scheduled 2-hop flight to Paris.  This was a Boeing 777.  For an intercontinental flight, it was not too bad.  The seats were marginally comfortable but time seemed to pass quickly.

We arrived in Paris around 5pm local time and went to our hotel.  The setting sun gave us a reasonable view of the Paris skyline.  We had dinner at a close bistro and then crashed.

Next morning, we headed out to take in the sights.  The outside of the Marriott hotel was on a tree-lined boulevard that was right next to the Metro.

Our first stop was the Army Museum and Napoleon's Tomb.  Along the way we had some frivolous moments.  I am not sure what was said, but it must have been pretty funny.

Napoleon's Tomb is inside a large chapel, the domes are visible in the photo above.  The building in the foreground is the state hospital.

I got Michele, Jim and Kathleen to pause for a group photo.

Inside the chapel structure were some awesome statues.  Note the lion heads on his boots.

The altar inside the church was spectacular.  Note the spiral columns made of dark marble.

The carvings in the side alcoves were intricate.

The back-lighting made this a difficult shot, but thankfully I have access to Adobe Lightroom to help get rid of the excessive highlights from the outside window.  This is Napoleon's tomb (or so it is labeled), although I doubt that his remains are actually inside.

The domes of the cathedral had detailed frescoes.

I am loathe to admit, but I do not know who Mr. Vauban was or what part he played in French history.  Sadly, in Paris, nothing is free and internet access is included in that list of costly extras that tourists have to pay for.

A more detailed view of the altar and the spiral marble columns.

The dome above the altar had another detailed set of paintings.

Detailed marble work of the access to the altar area.

The crypt area below the altar had this coffin like structure.  Despite the labels on the marble sarcophagus, I might believe that Napoleon's remains are in this wooden coffin.

The perimeter of the crypt area was lined with detailed statuary.

High above were more paintings.

From the tomb area, we went to the adjoining Army Museum and saw this WWI tank

The internal courtyard of the museum was cobblestone and large indeed.  Above, Kathleen takes a photo of a portion of the building.

There were a number of antique cannons in the museum that represented many phases of the French military.  This one had the symbol of the French king, a fire-breathing salamander cast into the barrel.

At the breach end of the canon, I noted these symbols, which are likely Roman numerals for the date of manufacture.

These symbols appear to be Arabic indicating that this cannon may have seen service in one of the French colonial areas like Algeria.

We went to the upper floors of the museum to see more antique hardware.  One section of the museum had old breast-plates that date back to medieval times.  This breast-plate is from the Battle of Waterloo and the fellow wearing this had a really, REALLY bad day.  The cannon round went straight through, and the wearer clearly did not survive.

After saturating on French colonial military memorabilia, we headed out into the city.  The front of the Army Museum had nice ornate gates.

Note the intricate details cast into the cannon barrel.

The travel in the plane was somewhat uncomfortable, but not as bad as I remember.  Once you withstand the plane flight, it is all downhill from there..

Next, we complete our first full day in France with a walkabout in Paris and a meal at a local bistro.

Navigation Links
Previous Adventure
Top of this Page
  Next Adventure
Trip Home Page  
Bill Caid's Home Page

Photos and Text Copyright Bill Caid 2013, all rights reserved.
For your enjoyment only, not for commercial use.