For our last full day in Paris we spent Friday doing as much as we possibly could, from museums and cemeteries to shopping and one last picture stop by the Eiffel Tower. We set off early Friday morning in search of a fire station, which we learned that Paris doesn’t really have an official one. However, we did pass by a hospital later and we found a fire ambulance so my friend was able to trade fire station shirts for her dad. We then made our way to the metro station and headed to the Latin Quarter to do some of our last shopping. Then we made our way around the corner to the Musee de Moyen Age (the Museum of the Middle Ages) which is housed in the Cluny abbey. The artwork inside was incredibly amazing from the tapestries to the architecture of the abbey and of course the triptychs and other books that were gilded in gold and other precious metals. We then walked over to Notre Dame where we went into the crypt, an underground archeological exhibit that is the length of the Notre Dame courtyard above-ground. It was really impressive to see remains that date back to when the Romans ruled this area. I find it really neat to have walked in the Roman Forum last year and then to see how far the Romans had an influence over was truly amazing. We then hopped back on the Metro to find the Pere Lachaise Cemetery where Jim Morrison is buried along with many, many others. It took us a few minutes to find the right entrance to the cemetery and then a little while to find his grave. It was amazing we didn’t get lost in that cemetery, it is certainly its own maze. Along the way we discovered some pretty interesting tomb stones, both new and old, broken and polished. After visiting two cemeteries and passing by others I realized how different these are from ours back home. At home, there may be some graves that have a mausoleum or larger headstone, but in France every grave seemed to have a large stone coffin if you will as the grave marker. Some of these were flat to the ground while others were their own individual prayer box (see picture above). It was very interesting and something I will have research as to the reason behind it. Then we went on another adventure to find the aquarium, from changing metros several times to figuring out which was the right side of the street that the aquarium would be on. We were very much relived when we finally found it. I didn’t really know what to expect to find at this aquarium, but I was certainly surprised with some of the fish that they housed there. Most of the fish came from countries that the French flag has touched, along with a Nile Crocodile and a Mississippi Alligator, quite the intimidating creatures. And then there was a tank with sting rays and some kind of sea turtle. It was the funniest thing to watch how the sting ray would glide right over the turtle. We then left the aquarium to find that it had begun to rain and headed for the metro to take us do some last minute shopping on Champs Elysee. After a few stops in Channel and a chocolate shop we headed back to the hotel to get ready for our farewell dinner.
Despite the rain we walked in cheerful spirits with umbrellas in hand past the Eiffel Tower down along the river Seine to where we found the bistro right on the river Seine. We had a great table, right under the Eiffel Tower so we were able to watch the lights change and the twinkling all night. Dinner was excellent with great food: a French salad complete with a pouched egg, chicken and bacon, followed by chicken and mashed potatoes and ended with crepes paired with great conversation about our last day and the sharing of our favorite memories. Then we headed back up the hill and took more pictures before we returned to finish packing and hung out in the lounge before bed. It was a great end to a wonderful and memorable trip.