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"There is nothing like returning to a place that has remained unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have. " -- Nelson Mandela
|Episode 21: Tour De France Part 1|
@ Where`s Cherie?
Aug 06 2002 - 04:18 PST
|cherie writes: June 2000|
It doesn't get much better than this. Our hotel in Paris is overlooking a giant Godiva chocolate store. It really brings a whole new meaning to "sweet dreams."
I am here with Kristi, Jay (Kristi's 18 year old cousin) and Rob. They seem to be the only people that are not laughing at me. Everyone in France thinks it is funny that I am a sweetheart. Cherie, Cherie, Cherie, it means "sweetheart" in French. So I had to come to France to realize that everyone is a sweetheart: Mon Cherie. But I am Mon Cherie Cherie, twice as sweet.
They say, when in Rome....so while in France...we had to try everything French. We started with French Fries (tried more of those than I'd care to admit), French Dip, French Onion Soup, French Toast, French Dressing, French Bread, French Manicure and the French Tickler (just kidding Mom!)But we did go to the erotic museum. The French people are passionate without reservation. On a typical stroll though the park you may find an executive discarding his $400 loafers like they were flip-flops, sliding himself into a chair while taking off his silk-shirt the way the Incredible Hulk might. In other words, the French version of the erotic museum should have had a railing to hold on to when you thought you would faint from shock.
There is a sentuality to the heat in France so that when you are walking down the steet, you feel like you are watching a peep show. The way the people kiss when they greet, you'd swear they were all dating! The women unbutton their blouses like they know they are being watched and then poor just enough Evian across their chest to perk up everything around them. The French have a natural artistic look to them, somewhere between pensive, pouty and angry. I can't help but think that they should all be carrying around a paint brush and a pallate.
We've been checking off the tourist things...taking a picture with Mona (Lisa) and Venus De Milo, and yes the Lourve Museum let's you take pictures. We saw Norte Dame (inside is the actual crown of thorns that Jesus Christ wore), and like a true American I thought "prove it", and then bought a book about the history of the crown of thorns to satisfy my curiosity...seems legit. We went to a ballet at the Old Opera house (us draging 18 year old Jay) and then to the top-less Caberet at the Moulin Rouge (Jay dragging us.)
Yet the climax of our trip did not occur at the Moulin Rouge (maybe it did for Jay, I didn't ask) it occured at the Eiffle Tower. 1.2 million people gathered to watch the sun melt into a fine peach mist, the Eiffle Tower come alive with glittering lights and then the surrounding sky exploding with red confetti fire-works. They did it for "Johnny". He is so famous that he doesn't need a last name, except none of us had heard of him (I guess the other million French people singing his songs MAY have heard of him). Johnny began to sing American oldies but goodies, except he sang them in French. As we swayed with the crowd, the beat of the music made our bodies alive, and we all wanted to do the same thing. Climb it. Yes, climb the Eiffle Tower.
Fortunatley other tourists have wanted to do this in the past and you can buy a ticket and walk up the 1170 steps to see a view I can only describe with the French phrase: oooh la la!
Stay tuned, we are having dinner at the Eiffle Tower for my Birthday on June 20th!
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