Monday, June 27, 2011

STRASBOURG AND PARIS, FRANCE

(This is the last post about my recent trip to Europe. If interested, you may scroll down to the previous five posts to read more about the trip.)



We traveled from Cologne, Germany to Strasbourg, France by bus enjoying the countryside. The Gothic cathedral in the Strasbourg square was beautiful.




The pipe organ and stained glass windows were unbelievable.



They say Strasbourg is Germany & France all rolled into one fascinating city.



We took the train from Strasbourg to Paris. I had hoped to view some of the French countryside; but the train was traveling so fast it was impossible to see much.



Here we are in Paris with all of our luggage, but the bus that was to meet us was stuck in Paris' evening traffic. We ended up hiking to our reserved restaurant where the bus finally caught up with us after dinner.




Some Paris street scenes!





Every turn in the street is beautiful and enchanting.


Mr. Eiffel's masterpiece!


The Versailles Palace.


Notre Dame Cathedral


The famous Louvre Museum








Paris has so much more to offer than just the highlights above. It is just a magical city. We were only there three days at the end of a long and tiring trip. Since I had been to Paris before, I elected on the last day to ditch the formal tour with the rest and stay close to our hotel. It was such an enjoyable day spent walking and exploring the neighborhood. I watched the locals go about their everyday activities -- buying groceries, doing their laundry, getting caught in a down-pour of rain, etc. I missed so many great photo opportunities, however; as I had given my camera to my son to take on the regular tour.



A trip to Paris for me would be incomplete without a trip to Laduree to buy their famous macarons to bring home. I managed to get home with 23 of the 24 I had bought - just had to sample one!


Some closing thoughts---





Emotional Moment #1: As we landed at the Berlin airport, I thought about my great-grandparents who emigrated to the U.S. from Germany 130 years ago to help bring the sugar-beet industry to the U.S. They never went back to Germany; and Mike and I were the first in our line of descendants to step on German soil. As we traveled around this beautiful country, I wondered what it would be like to leave your 'motherland' and never return.



Emotional Moment #2: Dachau -- I was 7 years old when this concentration camp was liberated. I remember a lot about WWII - three uncles who went off to war (all returned, but one was never the same); my Dad was a farmer so had a deferment. I remember the rationing of sugar, gasoline, etc. and walking the two miles to town so gas could be used for farming. Also, remember taking my pennies to school to donate to the Red Cross and helping my Grandmother in the Victory garden; then the celebration in town when the war ended. BUT, our sacrifices were nothing, ABSOLUTELY NOTHING, compared to those who experienced a concentration camp.



Emotional Moment #3: Pinching myself to realize that I was back in Paris. As I made my way around Paris, my heart would skip a beat every time I caught a glimpse of the Eiffel Tower - it truly is magnificent.



Emotional Moment #4: This didn't happen until I arrived home and realized that my bible was not in my suitcase. You know the type of bible -- read from cover to cover with hand-written notes and underlined verses. I must have left it on the nightstand in my Paris hotel room. I can't believe I did that as I'm organized and a very good packer. Hopefully, someone found it, will cherish it, read it, and develop a relationship with God because of it. Maybe that was the whole purpose of my trip.



4 comments:

Sue said...

OMG.....I forgot this was your Paris year....I have not even read one blog in four month, isn't that ridiculous!!!
We have been back in Georgia for the past two weeks but are leaving again in the morning to go back to Jersey with a stop to leave the Big Boss' ashes for safe keeping at Arlington National Cemetery....the full military service will be this Thursday.....then about two weeks in Jersey to recover and then back home to Georgia....And yes, I got a Porsche Cayenne (the SUV)
and have to get it bak to Georgia as it's currently in storage up there....We also bought a huge house and we are having a pool installed....very fancy schmancy....SO I have tons to blog about....DOn't know if anyone will be interested but I will be back to blogging by the end of July.....
SO I'm assuming your trip was fabulous....will look at all your photo's.....can't wait to hear all about it....
Oh and I haven't written since the estate sale.....between the 2003 Ford Taurus with a big dent and alot of crap we made $8500.00......

Confessions of a Plate Addict said...

I really enjoyed this post! I have been to Strasbourg, too...very unique city! And how fun...I wonder if you were there when we were..June 5-12! It was cool and rainy for us, too. I'll bet that if you call the hotel, they have your Bible. I know my hotel kept a stack of books that the guests had left behind. If not...your thought is lovely!...hugs...Debbie

Susie Q said...

Just so loving traveling with you this way...I long to see the sites you visited so I am enjoying each word, each photo. Thank you for sharing these Sally! I love it...
Love,
Sue

laurie @ bargain hunting said...

Sally, your photographs are gorgeous! What a wonderful trip. I love your attitude about your Bible, and I suspect that you are right-someone needed all of your marginal notes even more than you! laurie