My name is Anthony, and I have an addiciton... I am addicted to postcards, I just can't stop myself buying the fuckers... 5 more today I think.
Anyway I'm in Paris right this moment, trying to write this on the most confusing keyboards I've used this trip (seriously... azerty? and who needs to hit shift for a full stop?). Paris has not wowed me nearly as much as Berlin did... Now I'm not the biggest Francophile out there (except when it comes to Yoann... I love that kid) and I don't quite get the Paris hype. I guess I'm not the biggest romantic out there, so Paris had an uphill battle to impress me more than ''alternative'' Berlin... Paris is just a little to stylish and impressed with itself for me. It does look very nice and old though.
I hopped a train from Nantes yesterday after staying with Cam (thanks again Cam!) and got to Paris about middayish... One thing I noticed very quickly is the metro system here... It is awesome, I wish we could have something like that in Sydney, but we just don't have the population density =( not having to wait more than 4 mins for a train rocks almost as much as train stations every couple of hundred meters...
Once again I had hostel issues, but this time the lovely French chick at the counter of the first one I went to called around until she found a super dodgy hostel on the other side of town (called Bed and Breakfast) that had space for me. There are some cool guys in my room though, including two mexicans a german and an Irish guy. Words can't really describe how dodgy this place is (the shower costs extra! and they moved a new bed into my room taking away all the floor space) but the bed is clean (I think) and it's very cheap for the locaion.
After check in I decided to spin across town to go to the catacombs, but they were to full and it was to late, so I decided to do the touristy thing and went to see the Eiffel tower, then the Arc de Triumph (which I climbed... not worth the money they charged) and finally Notre Damme... All big and old and kinda sceni... but not mind blowing.
Today was different though, I skipped off to the catacombs early and went in at opening... VERY cool. Basically after a 20m descent below the street you hit these old mining tunnels that they relocated a few graveyards into a couple of hundred years ago. So you have between 1-2km of dark underground tunnel lined with human remains in decorative piles... Macabre and AWESOME... But hard to photograph and capture the atmosphere (I was wandering through listening to the Danse Macabre on repeqt). I was in line with a girl I thought was French (given she was speaking french) and she was in front of me as we wandered the tunnels. She walked into the ossuary a few seconds before I did and came running out because she wasn't expecting to be confronted by piles of skulls... So Holly (I found out her nqme later) ran up to me babbling in French and all I could say was ''deep breaths sweetheart'' ''Oh, you're english, I thought you were French...'' so it turns out I could pass as French OR German now... provided I don't open my mouth. Not sure how I fell about that... Germans are cool, but I don't think I'm chiche enough to be French.
Anyway, morale of the story is 67 million people's skeletons stacked on top of each other looks pretty cool... but the dulcet tone of the American accent yelling ''WOW hunney! We don't have THOSE at home!'' ruins it like everything else in life.
After that I nipped off to the Lourve... and spent 6 hours there... Very cool. I think I took over 100 photos today of bones and paintings/sculptures (often of bones). I saw lots of cool old and very old things, but there were heaps of big tour groups around. Watching these busloads of people walk in a big group taking the same photos of the same thing they are told to (''this is art, appreciate it now'') kinda fills me with equal amounts of anger and pity though.
I think I prefer sculpture to paintings though... Maybe the 3d nature appeals to my borderline add attention span, or perhaps it's just less wanky (or more morbid). It's also easier to skip the boring busts and look at the cool grisley ones... On that note the romans may have kicked the known worlds ass, but they really sucked on the weird/cool sculpture front).
As for the cliche Lourve things... Venus de Milo has the best sculpted abs in the museum and the Mona Lisa is bigger than I thought. Everyone told me it was smaller than you'd think... So I expected tiny, but it's a reasonable size... And seeing those two gave me half a ninja turtle adventure.
So today was good, but I still prefer Berlin
the Lourve and catacombs make Paris cool, not vice versa like mqny people assume
Lové hugs and kissès