06 July 2013

Yesterday in Paris

On Thursday, we had a couscous royal for lunch in a restaurant with Ellen & Paul and Peter & Jill. Here is a photo as a sort of teaser. I'll post some more photos next week when I'm back on my computer. I can blog on the tablet, but tasks like processing and uploading photos are definitely more difficult to accomplish than on a PC.

Le couscous royal: all this for one person's lunch 

Yesterday for lunch CHM and I decided to buy a spit-roasted chicken, some potatoes, and some céleri rémoulade from a shop in the neighborhood, and I picked up a bottle of Saint-Emilion wine to go with all that. Then I went out for a long walk around the city.

La Tour Saint-Jacques in the center of Paris

Thanks to The Beaver, who comments here and lives in Montréal, I had learned that the Tour Saint-Jacques in Paris is open to visitors this summer. In my nearly 45 years of living in and visiting Paris, I've never been up to the top of the tower (it's 16 stories high). It's squarely in the center of Paris, so the views have to be stunning. I'm not sure it has ever been open to the public before.

Unfortunately, all the tours yesterday afternoon were already full. There's a sort of a quirky system for reserving a tour. You can make a reservation for any day of the week if you phone in on Thursday morning between 10 and 12. Otherwise, you have to go to the tower and see if there is any space available on one of the tours that day. You might get in immediately, or you might have to reserve a tour later in the day. You can't reserve for any other day (unless you do so by phone on Thursday morning).

C'est clair, non ? Anyway, the upshot is that all the tours were booked yesterday afternoon, and I haven't yet decided whether to go back today to see if I can join a tour (they're not "guided" tours exactly, but accompanied). I might have to come back to Paris later this summer to go up there. In September, the tower will be closed to the public again.

So instead of going up to the top of the Tour Saint-Jacques, I walked through Les Halles, over into the Marais, and up to the Place de la République. It was sunny and hot out, and there were throngs of people on the streets speaking every language imaginable (including a lot of Americans of course). I'll post some pictures next week.


  1. "Vingt fois sur le métier remettez votre ouvrage,
    Polissez-le sans cesse et le repolissez." — Boileau, Art poétique

  2. Comme disait la grand-mère d'un ami à moi, 'Faire et défaire, c'est travailler.'

  3. I'm anxious to hear about the goings-on at Les Halles, Ken! Oh...
    wish I could have been with you or there by myself to walk around Paris.
    I miss France!!!

  4. That's a lovely photo of La Tour Saint-Jacques....hope you get a chance to get inside later this summer.

  5. CHM studied the web site for the Tour Saint-Jacques tours and discovered that the tower is open to visitors only on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. That explains why they take reservations by phone only on Thursdays' I guess.

  6. Oh, my, so glad that you're having warm, sunny weather for your visit to Paris :) (Keep an eye out for Amy H. and kids, now that they live in Paris-- the kids just got out of school and they are frolicking out and about in Paris :).

  7. Bonjour, Ken. Si tu commences à cette Tour et descends la rue St. Jacques, la via Turonensis t'amènera directement à Tours où Walt pourrait te chercher. Ça serait beaucoup moins cher que le train.

  8. LOL, Dean. Bonne idée. Cependant, j'ai déjà tellement mal à mes pauvres pieds après avoir marché pendant tant d'heures et tant de kilomètres ces trois derniers jours dans les rues de Paris. En plus, je vais t'avouer ceci : mon billet de train pour Blois ne m'a coûté que 10 € !

  9. Back in the early days of our visits to Paris, when we first discovered the Tour Saint-Jacques, I might have been able to make that trip to the top, but there's no way I could even attempt it these days.


What's on your mind? Qu'avez-vous à me dire ?