“I planned it right down to the last detail. It was perfect”
After a rather quick breakfast of three different pastries, juice and coffee we headed out to the Eiffel Tower. It was 43F, windy and raining hard as we approached the landmark.
We had tickets for the 10:30 group, but arrived early, around 9:30. At first the attendant turned us away telling us to come back in an hour. As we were leaving he called us back and said go ahead now. It’s a good thing he did because when we came back down there was no line in the plaza and it looked like they closed the tower due to the rain and high winds.
We spent about a half hour at the top taking lots and lots of pictures. Here are a few of them. Be thankful I edited them down to a manageable number. The rain and clouds (which we were in) limited our view, but it was still impressive. The attendant at the top was trying to help me see Notre Dame, but I just couldn’t. I finally just said, “Oh! I see it now,” and thanked him profusely for his help.
The Eiffel Tower is absolutely amazing as an example of 19th century engineering. Up close it is hard to call the iron work beautiful or graceful, but in whole it truly is both.
We then walked about 0.3 miles to a Pierre Herme patisserie to buy some Infinitively Vanille tarts, as recommended by Dan. The first patisserie did not have any so we proceeded about 0.7 miles up a gentle hill to another. Nope! One more chance was to go to a full sized store another 0.5 miles. Bear in mind it was pouring and there was a 15 mph wind. Talk about dedication! The big store had them and the service was so elegant, we were duly impressed. We ate them later, back in our hotel room and without question the walk and the wait were worth the effort.
On our way we walked past the Arc d’Triumph. We can walk over a mile for a pastry, but not another quarter mile to walk around a monument? You betcha’!
Ok, now for something completely different: I took a choux baking class this afternoon. It was a 2.5 hour class where I and 5 of my new BFIBCC (Best Friends in Baking Choux Class,) learned basics, tricks and tips to make choux pastry, the basis of eclairs, profiteroles and chouquettes. The first two pastries are staples in my kitchen, the third was something completely different. I figured while I am on a roll what could possible go wrong? Of course, being on a roll, or profiterole, nothing did. Here is a quick summary of what we did.
It was a great course, I was with three people from Utah and a mother and daughter from London. All great people, but none with any experience. I learned several minor, but important tips I never knew. I also had a 20 year professional head chef looking over my shoulder to be sure I did everything correctly, (I almost did, but there is always room for improvement.)
After the course I hailed a taxi for the trip back to the hotel. I stopped by a Franprix market for a bottle, or two, of wine, and stopped by the lobby hotel bar where they opened the wine and gave us glasses and spoons. Back in Chez Oney we ate our tarts from earlier and eclairs and chouquettes from the course. A well balanced meal before retiring for the day.
Tomorrow the Louvre!! (And who knows what else, this is Paris after all.)