We are at last back from what I believe is the most amazing vacation my husband and I have ever taken. Far too much for one post, I plan to capture highlights of our vacation under future themes of parks, history, food, architecture, etc.
There were moments on this trip when I actually got teary. Sublime moments I never want to forget:
One: A pre-dawn stroll in Versailles to Marie Antoinette’s hamlet, watching sheep graze, a Charles Shultz-looking sky break into periwinkle, rose, and peach, then realizing what time it was and sprinting back to the main Chateau for opening at daybreak.
Two: standing on the Rue Royale with other “low-key” revelers (the true partiers were on the Champs Élysées, pictured below during our earlier walk through the Christmas market), sipping a glass of champagne, surrounded by countless nationalities, ringing in the new year as the Eiffel Tower sparkled. Passersby in cars honked and yelled “Bonne Année!”
Three: Watching a string octet perform Pachelbel’s Canon, Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, Bach’s Ave Maria, and more in La Madeleine, a 400-year old church where Saint-Saëns once played the organ, where Chopin’s funeral was held, and (more grimly) where Louis XVI’s body was carried after his execution. The music and the surroundings brought chills. I could revisit that point in my life again and again and not tire of it.
I will post more later. For now, however, I am so happy to be back among sunshine, normal sunrise hours (8:45 is hard to get used to!), and a job and life that I love.