This morning we got up early to avoid the heat and make the journey to the top of the Eiffel Tower. Wednesday was 102. Today was so much better, but still warm. We live a little over 5 minutes away by bike thanks to our bike share membership, and hoped an early start would make the ultimate tourist attraction slightly less of an ordeal. But even as we arrived just as it opened, it was swarmed with people. It felt a lot like Disneyland as we got shuffled from one line to another. We are always conflicted about doing these kinds of things because we often get [more than] frustrated in crowds as grown adults try to push towards the front, jostling for the best position. But be it fear of missing out or just pure optimistic stubbornness, we keep coming back. And I am still torn because the view from the top is incredible. After playing Where’s Waldo with our knowledge of the Parisian sites, we spent forever watching a triathlon from above, tracking the bikers become runners. Both the beauty of city and rather hypnotic rhythm of triathlon spectating, were incredibly special. It just took some creative boxing out to make it happen.
We went back home that afternoon after eating croissants to fumble our way through the ultimate cross-cultural rite of passage: laundry. The experience was so taxing we napped before returning later for a picnic in the park directly below the tower with Laura and Logan, where we ate bread and cheese and chocolate and humus. Ideal. It was basically a whole day devoted to Paris’s most iconic landmarks, and I am unashamed. When you are in a city for a month you can get away with these kinds of things. Plus, Jeff on a bike with a baguette in his bag on the the way to the Eiffel Tower is pretty much the pinnacle of our Parisian experience so far. That and the fact that the weather has dropped to the point that I can sit without needing a shower.