"Everyone knows the more you wear pearls, little by little they become real....And isn't it the same with memories?" - The Madwoman of Chaillot

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Sacre Coeur, it was a lovely night

Motto of France...

A back view of Trinite church down a picturesque street...

So that's the odds and ends I forgot from the first part of today - now on the the quest for a SIMM chip for Bill's cell phone and dinner! We were supposed to be eating with our niece and nephew who coincidentally had a trip here at the same time but they ended up having to cancel so we were left to our own devices. Since the next day was for major tourist destinations we set out walking in our area. To make a long story short, the attempt to find the cell phone chip ended in a lot of walking - some in the wrong direction - only to find the store had closed 20 minutes before we arrived. But it led us to our theme for the night.

We started off going past Place Blanche and the Moulin Rouge (red windmill), which has a much storied past, most recently in Woody Allen's latest movie, Midnight in Paris.

In Italy it was "another pretty church", here the theme might be "another pretty street".

We found this down a Montmartre street - people throw hangers up on this chicken wire and try to get them hung there - no idea how or why it got started. You are really getting the highlights of Paris on this tour...

I promised wild goose chases - first one was to find a cell phone store because Bill wanted an international SIMM chip for his phone (for all those important work calls, in case Wayne is reading this - oh, and he wants Wayne to know he has spent time preparing his presentations and ISA talk but it's not going in my blog in detail, sorry.). Yeah, we did finally find a store and it was closed as noted above - but here is Rue Caulaincourt which we would not have followed if not for the phone search - and it led to a wonderful evening in Montmartre.

The Cimetiere de Montmartre - built below street level in the hollow of an old quarry, it epitomizes the artsy, quixotic, gentle, almost whimsical Paris that every romantic visitor secretly cherishes.(wording from ParisToGo) Edgar Degas and Alexandre Dumas are buried here.

Pictures through the wall above - it looks like a miniature city.

Found another "moulin" - which means windmill, this one a restaurant - Le Moulin de la Galete. Remember this place - it comes into another story...

And then the place I found (and where I wanted to eat) - Colleen, do you believe this place? Le Cave de Gaston Leroux - with a couple of picturesque old guys who look like they could be his cronies....as well as two other interesting looking customers! This is down a small, steep street not too far from the windmill (keep that in mind too)

Further on the way up to Sacre Coeur - this is a very busy nightlife area, and not mostly tourists... Another photo to keep in mind of Le Consulat.

Saw a chance to see the Eifel tower at sunset

Finally we were approaching our goal - and a kind of serendipity decision to climb the hill to Sacre Coeur after seeing the road up there while looking for the phone chip turned out very well.

The steps were crowded with mostly young people

Performers on the steps were singing Piano Man.....very French?

View of Paris when the sun was down

And the church after dark

And the long steps down to the Montmartre area

By this time we still have not eaten dinner so we set out on the next hunt - for the restaurant used in the movie Amelie..but alas, Bill had figured it out wrong and we were looking in the wrong place - where Amelie went to buy produce but thought we were looking for a restaurant so we totally missed it and finally gave up and hunted for a cafe with seating - outside so we could be totally cool....

Finally found one where there was a table and sat down.

Soon another couple took the recently vacated table next to us. We heard the waiter talk to them in English so we asked where they were from - imagine our surprise at hearing they were not only from Minnesota but from Bloomington, MN - just on the other side of the Twin Cities from us.

Here we are - and Tait and Amanda, our dinner companions!

And never fear, I did not forget the food....
My rabbit with a honey sauce was excellent - beans were fine and fried potatoes (not chips) were good.

Bill's beef pepper steak was not as good - a bit tough - not up to our Midwest standards for beef...

Back home by the Moulin Rouge...

and fell into bed exhausted but not defeated by jet lag.

Location:Montmartre, Paris

No comments: