We got cleaned up, ate a nice continental breakfast, and then got a cab (it took a while to find one) over to Musée de l’Orangerie, next to the Louvre. We got there at about 11A and had to wait until 12:30P to go inside, so we went shopping around the Louvre and had lunch at a cafe on Rue de Rivoli. There’s an amusement park in the Tuileries with at least one really interesting ride – here’s a video.

Then we walked back over to the museum and waited in line – luckily we had the museum pass as it let us wait in the shorter line.

The Musée de l’Orangerie recently reopened after a long renovation; it houses the large water lily paintings by Monet in two rooms.

I saw a woman walking by each painting, videotaping them, so I decided to try that as well – here are the videos (this seems to work better than trying to piece together a bunch of pictures into very long, narrow panorama):

We hiked down to Ile de la Cité, an island in the middle of the Seine, stopping at a church we found on the way, St-Germain l’Auxerrois. We just happened upon it, we didn’t plan to visit this church. It turns out this is where the first bells were rung to start the St. Bartholomew’s Day Massacre of the Huguenots (French Protestants).

Then it was on to Sainte-Chapelle, one of the two buildings remaining from the original palace of the kings of France built for Louis IX. Once again we got to cut ahead in line thanks to our museum pass – these things are great! This church was quite a surprise – we entered from underneath the church, which is where the bookstore is, and then climb a claustrophobic spiral stairway to the main church.

We strolled over to Notre Dame next; in this case, there was no cutting in line, we waited for at least 15 minutes in a very long line.

We walked back to the hotel, stopping to have a nice sweet snack at a little pâtisserie on the left bank. Aviva also stopped at a Starbucks (yes, we’ve seen three at least so far on this trip) – she asked me not to tell anyone she went inside but here you go, proof after all (she got a frappaccino to help wake her up).

After resting a bit, we ate once again at Le Procope – its close by and we were both too tired to walk anywhere. We walked a couple of blocks after eating to walk off our meal, and then hit the rack.

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