Citytrip 2012
Paris - France



Day 3
Tuesday, August 7


Having enjoyed our breakfast, we have planned to go to the Champs-Elysees again. This time to do some shopping at the prestigious local branch of Abercrombie and Fitch. And what a branch it is; people line up an hour before opening time in order to be first to spend their money. At the time the doors officially open, there are at least sixty to seventy people waiting.

Rather than entering through the front door on the Champs-Elysees side, we walk through the garden to the back of the building where the entrance is. It is here where a scarcely dressed young man with an impressive six-pack wearing only jeans and slippers awaits us in a hallway. Apparently it is a custom with this store that giggling girls and young women have their picture taken with a half-naked male(s) in their early twenties. What a sales concept this is, fashion laced with adolescent soft-porn!

Upon entering the actual store a waft of perfume forces itself into your nostrils, Abercrombie brand of course! The electricity here must cost a fortune because the place is dark and scarcely lit. The music on the other hand must be really cheap, because the sheer volume of it is hammering down on your ears and brain like mad.

The first living breathing individuals we encounter are both a young woman and man. They are standing in a corner dancing on two square feet each without leaving their place and dressed in the clothes they sell here. And that is all they have to do; they are actually living decoration! When I look upward to the second floor there is another couple doing just the same thing; dance to the music and looking pretty. What a way to earn your money.

Everywhere you look there are stacks of clothes displayed, all neatly ordered and arranged by colour and size. Here and there people pick up a garment to hold it in front of them or try it on. When returned to its former location it is of course not so neatly folded as before. Young employees therefor walk around not just to help people, but also to spot any incorrectly folded garments.

Nervous hands immediately correct the imperfection because their supervisors walk around to see if they just do that. In some cases they don't even wait till people put the things back; they quickly take the garments directly from their hands! No, not to correct the imperfection, but to avoid it all together!

Due to this anal behaviour it becomes tempting to just "casually" pick up something like a sleeve or so, and put it back in a slightly different position. This immediately triggers a response from the young employees and the neatly folding starts again. It is hilarious, really! Come to think of it, I don′t think that any of the employees that I have seen so far is any older than twenty five to twenty eight.

Having bought the vest that my daughter wanted we enjoy the silence of the street again, and set out to discover what the other shops here have to offer. And the Champ-Elysees is a long shopping street people, a very looooooooong shopping street. Go see for yourself! Oh, and guys, be patient, be very patient!

Having been exposed to the horrors of shopping on the Champ-Elysees we make our way to the Louvre by means of the metro. The Louvre, originally a palace but now one of the largest and most visited museums in the world. Some of the museum's most famous works of art are the Mona Lisa and the Venus of Milo.

The Louvre became a public museum at the end of the 18th century. It is located in the 1st arrondissement, at the heart of Paris. There are about 35.000 objects on display, spread out over three wings of the former palace. The most recent addition to the Louvre was the construction of the glass pyramid, which functions as the museum′s main entrance. The pyramid was built in 1989 by the renowned American architect I.M. Pei.

We take the metro again and make our way to the Île de la Cité were we have a great lunch at Bistro Margueritte.

Having finished our lunch we walk to the plaza that is in front of the Notre Dame, and sit down and observe the crowed for a while. You can find people of all nations walking around here.





The next object to visit is the famous mosque of Paris in the Cartier Latin district. The mosque was founded in 1926 as a token of gratitude, after World War I, to the Muslim tirailleurs from France′s colonial empire, of whom some 100,000 died fighting against Germany. It is located in the 5th arrondissement, is one of the largest mosques in France.

Visitors are welcome at the Paris Mosque and short tours are given of the building, its central courtyard, and its Moorish garden. Guides also present a brief history of the Islamic faith. In the winter, the main attraction for locals are the marble Turkish baths. Baths for men are open Tuesdays and Sundays; other days are for women only.

That′s is it, we are done for the day! We are off to the hotel again and ready for a meal. This time I want something decent to eat, and not the rubbish we had last evening at the Buffalo Inn opposing the Gare du Nord train station. So we go back to the Foresta Pizzeria at the crossroad with Rue Maubeuge and Rue Dunkerque.

Having enjoyed a good meal we take a walk to the Sacre Coeur. It is bussy again, mainly tourist, and also traders that try and sell you bottles of bear and cheap souvenirs. Street performers are showing their skills; one of them is joggling a soccer ball in the most amazing ways. It is really nice here, so we sit down on the stairs and enjoy the evening view across Paris for a while.











and welcome!




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Abercrombie and Fitch Paris, early before opening

Abercrombie and Fitch Paris,
early before opening



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Abercrombie and Fitch Paris

Abercrombie and Fitch Paris



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Arc du caroussel near the Louvre museum

Arc du caroussel near
the Louvre museum



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The Louvre pyramide

The Louvre pyramide



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The Louvre pyramide

The Louvre pyramide



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Security patrol at the Notre-Dame

Security patrol at the Notre-Dame



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The Notre-Dame

The Notre-Dame



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An artist juggling a football in various positions (at Sacre Coeur)

An artist juggling a football
in various positions (at Sacre Coeur)



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An artist juggling a football in various positions (at Sacre Coeur)

An artist juggling a football
in various positions (at Sacre Coeur)