What's with all the people? Are they giving away gold up there? It only took about an hour to get through the line though.

Quite the display…

…of power, fortune and design.

We took the train just west of Paris to Versailles. We were lucky to find out about the side-trip from Kristin’s cousins Mike and Jenny. They had just traveled to the area about a month before we had, and said it was a sight to see. We’re glad we went, though my feet are not quite as sure.

The place is surreal and enormous. And all together rather beautiful despite it’s stature of pompousness. The main palace area is the major tourist area and had some really interesting elements to it, but the gardens and Trianons are much more interesting and fun to be in. Might be because I didn’t have to feel like a fullback on a Sunday afternoon in the AFC Central.

We roamed around a bit, grabbed some lunch at a little place hidden among the trees between the palace and the Grand Canal, then rented bikes to get out further into the gardens. Riding around was probably the highlight of it all. It was nice to not walk on our tired feet and feel like we were back in the saddle a bit. We both were kind of jonesing for a ride, despite the crazy riding we had just done. The lines and grids of the gardens was fascinating.

After finishing up with our jaunt around Versailles, we headed back to Paris on the train to see if we could get up the Eiffel Tower. But the lines were immeasurable and we decided to go find food before we harmed anyone from the deranged hunger pangs. After a bit of fussing with maps on the iPhone we managed to find a Thai restaurant not far from where we were. It was a terrific find. Amazing food and even better desserts. There was a newlywed couple from L.A. sitting next to us, and the bride’s father went to school with the owner of the restaurant in Laos back in the day. So it was interesting to hear all that, as well as the sad news from Aurora and the shootings at the movie theater.

After dinner we stopped back by the tower, but with only one elevator working to take people to the top and the line a mile long we decided to head in for the night and take it easy after the long day out in the gardens. We figured we could give it another go tomorrow.

-JL

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