24th October 2010, Sunday
We started the day early going to Versailles. The Royal Chateau is opened at 10 am, so we went earlier to get the earlier tickets. The tour guide did warn about the management might close the place for the day if there’s a demonstration. However, we were glad that it didn’t happen.
Grandeur view of Royal Chateau of Versailles
We were greeted by another tour guide. She’s a Malaysian, living in Paris for over 20 years! She’s really good for a change! We arrived at the gate of Royal Chateau of Versailles and we were in awe. Imagine a place built in the 1600s and still standing majestically in front of your very eyes! Our jaws dropped in disbelief at the paintings on the wall and ceilings furnished with hand paintings and carvings. It was indeed a magnificent sight to behold. I think most of us ended with neck aches after visiting this Chateau because we kept looking up the ceiling! LOL!
Pictures simply could not do any justice for Versailles. You have to visit this place yourself! I promise you will be in awe!
One of the many statues in Versailles
There’s a Murakami exhibition going on with his renowned plasticky dolls. If you ask me, the dolls really “pollute” the grandeur image of Versailles. The dolls are indeed an eye sore. My friends and I agreed that, they should not have placed the dolls there!
As usual, some of the people who were only interested in shopping, looked so bored to the core! They didn’t even listen to the tour guide. They looked for places to sit down and kept yawning. What morons! Might as well just drop them at Champs Elysees and shop all they want! There are more to Paris than shopping alone!
Laduree Macaroons since 1862!
As soon as we got out from the Chateau, there’s a little shop tucked in the small corner. I was so delighted to find Laduree there! Luckily, Ms Han informed me before hand about this shop, so I decided to try the macaroons there – the real deal! Priced at Euro14.90 for 8! That’s Rm61+ almost RM7.70 per macaroon!! Well, it was worth it though! The macaroons melts in your mouth and have crushed peanuts in most flavors, which I think reduce the sweetness in the macaroons.
We had our lunch at a Chinese restaurant, within 15 minutes walk from Versailles. When we grouped up in front of the Chateau for a head count, the tour guide explained that we would take a short walk because there is no parking at the restaurant for big buses. Upon hearing this, the shopping kakis groaned. “My God! 15 minutes walk? Are you kidding me?!”
I was utterly (100x) disgusted by them. Then I said sarcastically, “Yesterday shopping whole day never see you all complain? Now walk 15 minutes CAN DIE MEH???”
That shut them up real good!
After lunch, we went on for some photo stops around Paris. Of course, we also stop at the field overlooking the Eiffel Tower. It was about to rain when we got down from the bus but thank goodness, the skies remain gloomy but yet to rain till we got onto the bus. Then, we proceeded to take a cruise along River Seine.
Along River Seine
Cruising along River Seine, accompanied by Edith Piaf’s melodious voice is simply relaxing. Here, along the river, we get to see the buildings on both sides of the river banks. There are some activities going on along the river – fishing, people just sitting and relaxing, cycling, lovers kissing, people always waving at you even if you are not waving at them! etc. A friend said that, during summer, you would get to see many people lying topless along the banks of the river for sun bathing!
The Kiss by the River Seine
The highlight of the day is probably the visit to Eiffel Tower. We didn’t have to line up because we made prior bookings and managed to go up the elevator, after waiting less than 10 minutes. We were very excited like school children going to the zoo for the first time. Perhaps the shopping sakais were not too keen. Imagine stuck up there with no shop for the next 3 hours. Haha! Serve them right!
The magnificent tower
We went straight up to the second level and then to the third level, the highest point of the tower. It was a sight to behold. There is not many trees – everything is in shades of white and gray. But you could see the entire city was well laid out, not many tall buildings. Everything looked so lego-like and almost has perfect parallel lines!
The long queue to enter Eiffel Tower at 6 pm!
To add a cherry on top to the already perfect day, we booked a dinner at 58 Tour Eiffel and had our special dinner there! The night was spent with free flow of Bordeaux wine and camaraderie of close friends sans shopping sakais (we sat far far away from them!) What a perfect end for a perfect day! *
Foie gras de canard, marmelade griotte, cassis
Dos de cabillaud roti, asperges vertes, beuvre blanc
*Except some people trying to ta pao the wine because there were some leftovers.. so it’s a bit sia sui lah!