Paris Plans (the Itinerary)

May 25, 2008

bassist, computer sketch by aka Lavenderbay, 2008

If music be the food of love, play on! — John Keats.

Ladies and gentlemen, it is with either stupendous hubris or daft optimism that I unveil to you… my proposed 10-day itinerary of our vacation in Paris!

It is also with an ulterior motive that I do this: you and I will have a reference point for each daily post-card-length entry. You can do your own research (Who was “Jean Sans Peur”? What’s the Pantheon? How did the Latin Quarter get its name?) . Then when  I write things like, “Windy, so no Eutelsat. 😦 ” , you’ll know what the heck I’m talking about. Here goes!

 key: museums; castles, palaces, and prisons; greenspace; churches; music; other

Tuesday, May 27: Fly to Paris [Already plans are awry: no seats left. We’re going to Frankfurt instead, and doubling back, arriving five hours later than we had originally planned. Eesh! ]

Wednesday, May 28: Locate apartment and landlord, 2nd Arrondissement. Get groceries on nearby rue Montorgueil. Turtle takes Jack to final day of Foire du Trone funfair [this last plan is already scuttled since we’ll be arriving so late. Not batting a thousand yet, am I?  Instead, after supper maybe we’ll go up the Eiffel Tower — the crowds are thinner at night.]

Thursday, May 29: 1 000 ans du Rive Droite (1,000 years on the Right Bank)

  • 10 00  Carnavalet Museum (historical artifacts of Paris)
  • 11 30  Victor Hugo’s house
  • 12 00  find a creperie or something
  • 13 30  Cognac-Jay museum (French objets d’art, mainly 18th Century)
  • 14 30  the Tower of Jean Sans Peur (a real-life “Brave Sir Robin”, for Monty Python fans)
  • 15 30  Musee des Arts et Metiers
  • 18 00  supper at the apartment
  • 20 00  Messiaen centennial organ concert at Holy Trinity Church (where he played for 60 years)

Friday, May 30: Les Jardins à travers le temps (Gardens old and new)

  • 09 00  look around the Jardin des Plantes
  • 10 30  buy picnic things on Avenue Mouffetard
  • 11 00  visit the Museum of the Middle Ages, including a presentation of medieval motets, and the medieval garden
  • 13 30  picnic lunch in the Luxembourg Gardens
  • 15 00  Bourdelle museum
  • 16 00  Post Office museum
  • 17 00  Jardins Atlantique; then home for supper

Saturday, May 31: Versailles, including the Grandes Eaux Musicales; home in time for supper

Sunday, June 1: Les Musées sans frais (Free museum day, 1st Sunday of each month)

  • Morning:  choice of Louvre, Orangeries, Orsay, Pompidou, Rodin, or Picasso; lunch at a café
  • Afternoon:  a different museum from the same list; home in time for supper

Monday, June 2: Chartres. See the Cathedral, explore the town; home in time for supper

Tuesday, June 3: La génie de Paris (The genius/engineering of Paris)

  • 10 00  Le Corbusier house, 16th Arrondissement
  • 11 00  buy lunchables in Square d’Auteuil
  • 12 00  Parc André-Citroen; picnic; 10-minute ascent in the Eutelsat balloon (the following day, June 4, is the 225th anniversary of the first public flight of the Montgolfier brothers’ invention!)
  • 14 00  walk along the Seine past the Statue of Liberty and the Eiffel Tower; visit the Musée des égouts; home in time for supper

Wednesday, June 4: Les Savants (The Learned Ones)

  • 09 00  Notre Dame de Paris Cathedral
  • 10 30  the Conciergerie and the Sainte-Chapelle
  • 12 00  walk through the oldest Latin Quarter streets
  • 12 30  picnic in the ancient Roman arena
  • 13 00  the Pantheon and/or the Marie Curie museum
  • 14 30  visit to a post office that houses a bit of the old City Wall in its basement; buy souvenir envelope there
  • 17 00  home for supper
  • 20 00  musical “Porgy and Bess” at the Opéra Comique

Thursday, June 5: Le 8ième (How to Spend Next to Nothing in the Most Expensive Part of Town)

  • 09 00  window-shop on the rue Royale (and look for the Nicest Bathroom in Paris); church-hop the Madeleine Church and St-Augustin
  • 11 00  buy lunchables at market on Corvetto Street
  • 12 00  picnic in Parc de Monceau
  • 13 30  Arc de Triomphe; walk down the Champs Elysées
  • 15 00  Stamp Market, then the Petit Palais across the street
  • 17 30  home for supper
  • 19 00 Musée d’Orsay open late

Friday, June 6: Memento Mori (All good things must come to an end)

  • 09 00  Père Lachaise Cemetery
  • 11 00  Belleville Cemetery entrance (highest elevation in Paris); buy lunchables at market in Place des Fetes
  • 12 00  picnic at Parc des Buttes-Chaumont
  • 13 00 shopping, packing
  • 17 30  supper at the apartment
  • 20 30  concert, Duruflé’s Requiem at the Basilica St-Denis 

Saturday, June 7: Skedaddle to the airport.