As I am planning our trip to Paris this year, I look back to all the prior trips, what I remember and what I enjoy
RUNNING (I have adopted running as a way to stay fairly fit and “fit” into my pants)
Gardens of Versailles: Versailles is some 10 miles out of Paris on a special RER train. One of the main reasons that I allow this interruption from Paris, is so I can rise and be at the Gates of Versailles when they open at 8:00 and run out from the Palace, through the Gardens and Park alone in the dark. It is a grand and historic place and although I’ve never seen the Sun King (Louis XIV) or Marie Antoinette – I stretch my imagination. Dawn breaks, and as I return toward the Palace, the sun rises behind it, just a the daily mass of tourist begin to assemble.
Let’s Run Paris: a well established MeetUp Group of Parisians, runs every Saturday morning in several waves and paces. They run through the popular parks thoroughfares monuments and architecture. It is a morning which I will sacrifice, missing a morning in a great museum, but the time spent is the closest that I get to the pulse of the city.
Over time I have discovered good running routes from my hotel before breakfast: up the Seine to Notre Dame, down the boulevards and around the Eiffel Tower or down the Champs Ellise around the Arc de Triumphe to the Louvre.
THE MUSEUMS (and specifically avoiding the lines)
Our philosophy is to be one of the first into a museum on the morning, which is not as easy as it sounds.
Ten years ago when we started our trips to Paris, The Paris Museum Pass was the solution. But Now, it seems the everyone has a Paris Museum Pass, and it is no longer an advantage.
During the da Vinci Exhibition several years ago, you would by a pass for a specific time. You can purchase those for the Louvre at a premium, but this is how we do it now.
Find Something New or Get Lost
Last trip to Paris, I was going out for a run on the day that I would depart – and run down to the Eiffel Tower. I took a wrong turn, actually I took several wrong turns, instead of running into the Paris, I was running out-of-Paris. Lost, in the Dark. I came upon this ivory white, brightly lit statute of Louis IX (Saint Louis) as what I remember as a extremely spiritual moment. A lasting memory and a better knowledge of the lay-of-the-land
This rare experience is slightly painful and maybe a little dangerous, but I hope that is a part of every trip to Paris
The New versus the Old
There are places, museums, routines which we are comfortable with while in Paris
But the list of New Things is infinite