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Marie Antoinette and the Best Bus Tour in Town

May 22, 2008 - Marie Antoinette, Place Vendome, #69 Bus Ride

Our usual lovely morning of coffee and conversation and checking email. We took the Metro #13 to Grand Palais, as the Australian couple recommended last night at the Louvre. In Paris, there is a strong police presence. We observed a huge police van parked in front of the palace.

The largest, most impressive police van I have ever seen!

My pal Bobbie in front of Gran Palais

The line was short; it only took 10 or 15 minutes, and all that time we were entertained by a clarinetist. We enjoyed the statues along the front of the palace.

Free music everywhere and the water nymphs seem to be enjoying it!

The show was simply stunning and I regret that no photographs were allowed. Marie Antoinette lived a life that went from luxury beyond our imagining to life of ostracism and prison and death. The exhibit consisted of the three stages of her life; (1) a child and princess in Austria, (2) the wife of Louis XV, Dauphine, Queen of France, and (3) the politically hated queen, imprisoned for years and finally beheaded. It was an educational, sumptuous and finally a very sad exhibit.
We walked down the Champs Elysees to the Place Vendome. We looked over the Ritz Hotel, where Princess Diana left that fateful night, to die in a car crash. There were many incredible shops.

The fountains are works of art, and the doorways are too!

The Rolex Store had a great collection of items

We had so much fun looking at the shop windows and their displays

Where we could, we explored inside the shops

There is so much to admire and coffee shops where you least expect them

We stopped for lunch at a restaurant called Royal Vendome, where we shared escargots for a starter! Delicious! It was my first try for this dish and I was surprised. For an entree, I had grilled whole shrimp and they were also delicious. Our waiter was from Mauritania and we thought he was fabulous.

We passed the Opera House many times during our stay

After this long lunch, we had another memorable walk to the Louvre. From there we took the #69 bus through the districts of Bastille and Marais to the Gambetta District.

Cafe Voltaire in the Gambetta District. Here we saw police on skates

It is here one finds the cemetery Pere La Chaise. It is the resting place of famous people, including Chopin. We noticed the police were on skates. During traffic jams, they can get around better than the vehicles!
The #69 bus ride itself was exhilarating. It takes one to many famous spots and in many ways, it was better than a tour bus! Getting home, we did our usual trip from the Louvre to home via the #95 Bus. We are sure getting to know Paris!
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