Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Wickre Travelogue (August 20th)

To the Waterloo Station ! Before the invention of the commercial airplane the The Waterloo Station was the main gateway from England to the rest of the continent of Europe. British troops headed for the continent always took a train from that train station. Well, today we were going to take the Eurostar train from the Waterloo Station in London under the English Channel and on to Paris! We checked out of the Sumner Hotel and took a taxi (which was pink) to the Waterloo Station and boarded the Eurostar bound for Paris - make unexpected stop at Lille due to train mechanical problems. Train stopped for about 1 hour. Once in Paris we got a taxi to our hotel. We stayed at the Duquesne Eiffel Hotel near (you got it) the Eiffel Tower. The hotel is not as nice as our London Hotel what with pealing wallpaper in the hall and a general thread bear quality but from our two windows we have a view of the Eiffel tower if you look hard to your left.It's about 5 p.m. when we get settled. We head to the Eiffel Tower. Takes about 1 hour in line to get tickets - then up we go to the second level a spectacular, breath taking view of Paris. We took lots of photos and eat a sandwich and have hot chocolate. The evening is mild and turns cool - especially the wind blowing up on platform - we waited for dark to see the lights of Paris and the Eiffel Tower to lite up - it was beautiful.I see why they call Paris the City of Lights. To be frank, I had some cultural shock upon my first glimpses of Paris but it fades away with the beauty of the city. As we left the Eiffel Tower about 10:00 p.m. and were walking away, the tower was lit with a "light show". It was fun. Then we headed back to hotel happy to be in Paris.