Paris, Jour 4


[Notre Dame]

The nearly 15 degree drop in temperature was noticeable when we woke up this morning.  E fixed breakfast and then I sent some emails before we went out for the day. 

Our first stop was Notre Dame.  We’d both been there before, but we wanted to compare French and Spanish architecture.  Notre Dame is 850 years old this year and so there was a new viewing platform and some new signage since the last time we’d visited.  After admiring the outside of the cathedral and looking at the line, E was reluctant to go in, since he’d “seen it all before.”  I, however, didn’t really remember the outside and so was eager to check out the interior.  Typically, E was glad that I persuaded him to go in, since he had completely forgotten what it looked like, whereas my memories of Notre Dame came flooding back to me the moment we walked through the door (E and I always to seem to have opposite tastes and experiences).  While we felt more equipped to appreciate some of the features of Notre Dame after visiting the Gothic cathedrals in Burgos and Leon, we did note that Notre Dame seemed to have a consistency and uniformity that the others did not.  And while I identified more with the iconography in Notre Dame (it’s more chick-friendly), the images and statues in Leon felt a bit more grand and ornate.

After Notre Dame, we had lunch at a sushi restaurant on our way to the catacombs.  They say that our gustatory and olfactory senses are most easily associated with certain memories and I found myself getting sentimental when I realized that it had been a very long time since E and I had shared a meal of raw fish together.  Once we were through with lunch, we made our way to the catacombs, only to find that the line was so long that we would not be admitted before they closed.  We decided to come back another day and made our way back to the apartment.

My feet and legs were killing me by the time we stopped for a pastry at some famous, fancy bakery.  I’m getting a little frustrated with how broken my body continues to be.  Today I told E that the only physical benefit I seemed to have gained from the Camino is that my ability to keep walking/standing despite being in agony is greatly improved.  After the bakery, we headed home, had some dinner and then went for drinks in Montemartre and then home again.

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