17 September 2007

Sunday arrivals and departures

Joanna and I needed to be at the airport by 6:30 a.m. on Sunday to be sure we were there when Janice arrived. I set my alarm clock for 5:00. I had told Joanna I would call her and wake her up as soon as I was out of bed.

The gilded spire at the top of the Eglise du Dôme at Invalides

I tried to call her room, but it rang busy. I went downstairs and tapped on her door. No answer. I didn't want to knock too hard because I didn't want to wake up the people in the adjoining rooms. I tapped and I tapped for what seemed like five minutes. Still no answer.

The cupola over one of the side chapels at the Eglise du Dôme.
Does this qualify as as squared circle? Or a squared oval?

There was a phone on the wall in the hallway, so I picked that up to dial Joanna's room number again. Instead, the phone automatically called the front desk, waking up the night clerk. He told me to come downstairs and he would give me a passkey so I could let myself into my sister's room. He said her phone must be off the hook.

We took a walk along the Rue Cler just before lunch.

He was obviously very trusting. I walked back up the two flights of stairs and turned the passkey in the lock on her door. As soon as I pushed the door open a little, I saw Joanna sit bolt upright in her bed. "What are you doing in here?" she said. Then she recognized me and I told her what was going on. Jet lag, I assume, had her in such a deep sleep that she didn't hear me tapping on the door. But she sure heard that key turn in the lock!

This menu at the Bistrot du Septième was
tempting, but I wanted to go to Le Centenaire.

We made it to the airport by 6:30. Janice finally came out of customs at CDG terminal 2E at about 8:00. It was a long wait for us. Her baggage was nowhere to be found. Now it is 8:30 p.m. on Tuesday and she still doesn't have her suitcase. Air France promises it will be delivered to our house in Saint-Aignan tomorrow.

15 September 2007

We drove back to the Hôtel des Carmes, all three had showers, and by 10:00 we were checked out and back on the streets. I made the mistake of taking the car out of a perfect, free parking place on the Rue des Carmes, thinking I would easily find a place to park it over in the seventh arrondissement near the Eiffel Tower on a Sunday morning. Big mistake! There was some kind of foot race going on, and all the streets within two or three hundred meters of the tower had been closed off by the police.

Janice and Joanna at Le Centenaire
getting ready to order lunch

We finally parked farther away and took the metro to the tower. Joanna really wanted to go up to the top, but the lines were just too long. Instead, we went to a café where I have often had good simple meals and had a nice lunch. We were all hungry. The café is Le Centenaire on the Avenue de la Tour-Maubourg.

Vanishing France

After lunch, we walked through the Invalides complex and went to see Napoleon's tomb. Then we walked back to the car and headed out of town (taking the scenic route through the center of Paris) toward Fontainebleau, Orléans, and, finally, Saint-Aignan. The weather was perfect.


  1. I hope the luggage comes as promised! Sounds like you had a nice time in Paris. Bet you and Joanna were happy to see Janice as well as Janice being happy to see you both.

    I'm glad you've finally got good weather.

  2. Lots of logistical challenges, but you're all together and making the best of it. I'm sure it'll get better as soon as that luggage arrives! It'll be a relief. Good luck.

  3. Sunday was the best day in the whole summer to be in Paris! Your sister and her friend were definitely lucky with the weather.
    I cannot believe that the porter gave you the pass to her door. I wonder if he would have given it to someone else...

  4. About the cupola, it would have to be seriously cropped to qualify as a squared circle!

  5. That sky is beyond blue -- what a stunning photo of les Invalides!


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