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Can’t take it in…

There is so much to see and do in Paris. When contemplating music I’ll use to accompany my photo montage, there was only one song that fully captured my thoughts on Paris…

Can’t close my eyes
I’m wide awake
Every hair on my body
Has got a thing for this place
Oh, empty my heart
I’ve got to make room for this feeling
It’s so much bigger than meIt couldn’t be anymore beautiful
I can’t take it in

-“I can’t take it in” by Imogen Heap
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Great Sphinx of Tanis

The Egyptian Antiquities display was another location I didn’t spend enough time. But I did spend quite a few minutes waiting for the crowd to thin to get this shot of the Great Sphinx of Tanis. Patience isn’t always a strength of mine, but I’d like to think I grew in that regard a bit after spending time in Paris. Hush. Quiet. Breathe. Look. Listen.

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Winged Victory of Samothrace

What an amazing entrance. Standing defiantly, proudly at the top of the stairs in the entrance to the Sully wing was one of the first sculptures I saw in the Louvre – the Winged Victory of Samothrace. Truly spectacular.

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Musee D’Orsay

My travel companions were very smart to select an apartment so conveniently located. We stayed in a 3-bedroom apartment at 69 Rue de Lille, which was right across the street from the Musee D’Orsay. Despite this fact, it was Day 4 (if memory serves) before we visited the museum. It was a tremendous space. We saw some amazing works by Van Gogh, Manet, Degas, Renoir, and even some of Toulouse Lautrec. Understandably (and unfortunately), the Orsay does NOT allow photography. So, I played by the rules, with ONE exception. On the top floor of the facility, you have a stunning view of the city (Montmare in the distance) from the backside of the exterior clock. When I entered the room, I saw lots of folks taking this photo, and thought, “Well, if everyone else is doing it…” Unfortunately, my fear of getting caught resulted in a rushed shot.

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Locks of love… and destruction?

A common sight on the bridges over the Seine are these testaments to love. Couples write their names on locks, place the lock on a railing, lock it and throw the key in the river. It’s a moving testament to love, to be sure. And makes for some very interesting photos. But we’re told that this unauthorized public display of affection is actually doing damage to the architecture/stability of the railings. Some have reported that the weight of the locks have given way and cause railing to fall. I saw no evidence of this. Further, there were vendors on nearly every bridge selling locks. If the authorities decide to stop this activity, I hope they repurpose the existing locks and railings. I envision a large replica of the Eiffel Tower, built entirely from the locks. Or maybe a very large heart, placed in Tuileries Garden?

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Tourism Fail

Sadly, this is as close as I got to the Arc de Triomphe, driving the circle Place Charles de Gaulle on a tour bus. I’m a little upset with myself for not exploring┬ásuch an impressive sight. But even with a full week in Paris, it’s impossible to see it all – and enjoy the pace of a vacation. ┬áTo quote PBS travel host, Rick Steves, “You have to go believing that you’ll be back.” And I will. Someday.

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This… is Paris

It’s hard to find fault in the art, the architecture, the mood, but especially the food. Just the simplest of fares – cheese, bread and wine – makes for a magical moment that seems to encapsulate the entire trip.

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Feast for the eyes, and lens

One of the many beautiful scenes around the Paris Opera House. One expects important buildings like the Opera House to be adorned with such beauty, but honestly, such adornments were found everywhere in central Paris. A feast for the eyes, and lens.

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Belly of the beast

The amazing thing about this structure is how different and interesting it looks at different moments in the day. This shot was taken while walking underneath the beautiful beast.

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In awe of the Eiffel.

As I’ve shared with others, the Eiffel Tower seems cliche in photos and videos. It’s not until you see this awesome structure face to face that you fully understand and appreciate the marvel that it is. I first saw it on our introductory bus tour – from the 2nd floor of the bus. On our last full day in Paris, our group of seven gathered – with wine, cheese and bread – at the Eiffel. It was absolutely wonderful. People laughing. Relaxing. Enjoying time together. No hustle and bustle to be heard. And after two hours, with my back to the Tower, I heard a loud gasp from the crowd. I had missed the moment the lights on the Eiffel were turned on. But my camera didn’t miss the moment – well, a few moments later.

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