Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Driving into Paris

Now when I said we was dropping the car off in Paris - we would occasionally get a raised eyebrow. You know the look that says, "Do you think that's wise?"

I mean we weren't dropping it off on the outskirts of Paris or at the airport. Our apartment is in the 7th on rue la Motte Piquet. It runs off from Invalides.
On the way Sue needed to see her only big Chateau on this trip - Vaux le Vicomte. Sue tells me it was the Chateau that set the standards for future Chateaux including Versailles.

Things we discovered:
It was built by Louis XIV's finance minister Nicolas Fouguet and was so grand that Louis arrested him - it is said due to jealousy but one has to ask where the money came from for such a flamboyant building.  I'm not one to gossip but after all, he was the finance minister.
Vaux le Vicomte was used to film the "Man in the Iron Mask" and Alexandre Dumas featured the Fouquet Chateau (house) warming party and arrest in his third Musketeer book (from Rick Steves Paris book).

Sue experiences a dream of hers at Vaux le Vicomte

After an all too short visit at Vaux le Vicomte, we headed for Paris to deal with the traffic and finding the drop-off point for the rental car. Tommy, our GPS would only take us to the 7th with no further instructions for some obscure reason. We chose this drop-off point because it was close to the apartment but things never work out that simple - do they?

The drop-off office was closed - there were instructions on the door to take the car to the underground car park at Invalides Esplanade. We did find it but then we needed to find where the keys, etc went and fortunately we bumped into a car park worker who showed us. What luck.

Within the confines of our apartment lift. 

Getting familiar with our surroundings over a cool drink at a Paris bar.
A view of the top end of our street.
It's a tradition - Confit de Canard. It started in 2006 on our first  ever night in Paris.
Kir Royale was another first for Sue.
So we lugged two suit cases and some hand luggage about 800 metres to the apartment when Sue thought she lost the code to get in the front door. After rummaging through bags it was finally located.
But that wasn't the end of it. The lift was so tiny that at most, only two people would fit. If they weren't intimately associated, then they would be by the 5th floor.

Finally we did get our bags to the apartment and went for a walk around our new neighbourhood.
We had not stayed in the 7th before, it's different and it will be interesting to compare with the other districts where we have spent time.

The following day before our son Andrew was to arrive, I took a walk around Invalides to explore further and take some photos.

This was not a parking spot but who would complain about this wonderful piece of automotive exotica?
Invalides - we intend to visit tomorrow.

Parisians love their parks - so do we after living in our broom closet here!
Yep, that's Paris.....
The cars that ate Paris are these big fuel guzzlers today.
Sorry - but I always need to add a bike to most posts and Paris definitely have the most interesting bikes, not to mention their riders.
Paris buildings are very decorative, aren't they?

The restaurant Max is below our apartment. Our door is to the left.
Tomorrow we visit the Musee de l'Armee, a museum that covers the military history from stone age to World War II. We've been before but we want to share it with our son Andrew who arrives in the afternoon.


  1. I stayed near the 7th in October last year. When you visit Invalides perhaps you would also enjoy going "around the corner" to the Musee du Rodin, and visiting the beautiful Jardin du Luxembourg which is just a "Paris walk" away. I am so envious but I do have fabulous memories of that pocket of Paris. Enjoy!

  2. Louise,
    The Rodin Museum is a favourite and we should visit today with our son. We went there in 2006. Yesterday was our second visit to Invalides. It takes some time to explore it all.

  3. Glad you got the car sorted out, I wonder why Tommy and George decide to do strange things when you need them most!!!

    Wow, the Vaux le Vicomte looks well worth a visit and we like that photo of yours taken from the other side of the water.

    Love the E-Type but I will still go for a Porsche in preference!

    Ha ha that lift looks like fun, how ever did you fit your cases in as well??

    All the photos are great and it just emphasises the fact that we have a lot still to see in Paris..... Enjoy Diane and Nigel

  4. Next post has something special for you and Nigel.

  5. Kir royale is the drink I was telling you guys about when I was at montmarte

    1. Sue beat you to it in 2006 but be sure she will offer Kir Royale to you on our return.
      Been trying to comment on your dailies - keep up the good work.

  6. That lift looks really scary. I'd rather take the stairs than living with the thought of being stuck in it during a power cut. Brrrrrrr. Martine

    1. Its a bit of a tight fit Martine but it has revitalised our marriage (LOL, I'm sure)....


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