On Friday, we went to the covered market, Les Enfants Rouge on Rue de Bretagne near our apartment. It was not as exciting as the Rue Cler street market we visited yesterday, but we got some ingredients for lunch.
The big thing for today is our 2 hour evening tour of the Louvre with “Paris Walks.” There were purposefully only 6 people in our group that was lead by Malcolm, a quick-witted Brit who has lived in Paris for 45 years. The idea is to do in 2 hours what would probably take 2 days (or even 2 weeks) to do if we did the whole museum. We got there via the Metro when the long shadows of late afternoon were crossing the courtyard. A representative from Paris Walks greeted us and introduced us to the other two couples in our group and to Malcolm.
After a quick trip through security, we were whisked to the hall of statues as we traversed the huge open spaces. Then on to the great halls of the royalty with their grandiose dining, living, and frolicking. We learned of the geographical dispute between England and France over who would have the prime meridian. Was it to be France or England? We saw one of the markers for the French line as we walked along. We also saw an impressive archeological excavation that showed the ancient walls of the city. At last we were in the presence of Venus DeMilo. She is considered the epitome of the female form and Malcolm told us that a plastic surgeon used her as a model for his work. However “Winged Victory” was a far more dramatic statue and was displayed in a very imposing manner high above all viewers.
It was now time to visit Leonardo da Vinci and The Mona Lisa. We had to beat our way toward this small painting that seems to be overrated. It was amazing that photography (without flash) was allowed everywhere in the Louvre and here the cameras were snapping like crazy.
We bid adieu to our group and headed back to the Metro and stopped for a late dinner at a nearby bistro.