Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Boo Versailles, Bring On The Revolution!

Our first real day in Paris, we decided to leave.

We actually caught a train to Versailles, about 30 minutes outside Paris, to see the splendors of the French royalty. 

Okay, I'm just going to say it.  Versailles sucked!  It was a rough day.  That week had two French national holidays (V-Day and a religious holiday, the Ascension I think), so there were a lot more European tourists that usual.  Versailles was so very, very crowded.

When we got there, the line to get into the main palace was insane. We had bought these special museum passes, in part because they said you could cut the line at the popular museums.  Even the museum pass line, though, was so so so so so so long.  We decided to go to the gardens, the little palace, and Marie Antoinette's house first, in hopes that the main palace line would die down.

The gardens

The maze of hedges

The other rough thing about the day was all the walking.  It was a mile walk through the gardens to get to the little palace, and bit farther from that to Marie Antoinette's.  It wouldn't have been so bad if we hadn't been lugging a brick-like toddler on our backs.

Oh, sure, easy for you to laugh, pile-o-bricks.

We had read that you weren't allowed strollers inside the palace, so we borrowed Jenny and Tom's hiking backpack to carry little Levi.  But then it turned out you couldn't bring hiking backpacks into the palace, either, so all that work was pointless.
He did nap in the backpack, thankfully.
So we made our way out to the Trianon palaces.  The grounds were very lovely.

The royal bedroom.  Just kidding, I don't remember what this was.

Poking around Marie Antoinette's kitchen


So many people everywhere!!

We had a really delicious lunch along the way.  Seriously some of the best pizza I've ever had.  Then we made our way back to the main palace.
Little Levi liked being outdoors, but pitched a fit every time we went inside.

Okay, time for a little honesty.  Levi and I didn't even go inside the main palace.  The line was still really long, and we had had enough. Also, the little guy had not been behaving well inside the other palaces, and we didn't expect any differently in the main one, just with more crowds.  Jenny and Tom stayed, and we headed home.

But we needed to stop for a snack.  And look!  An automatic popcorn machine.  Awesomeness.
And just to add to the good times, it took us almost an entire hour to buy train tickets back to Paris.  Insanity.  I'm surprised there wasn't a riot in the train station, with all the frustrated and confused tourists.  At that point, I most definitely missed German efficiency.  The Germany train stations were nothing like this.

We stopped at a grocery store near our hotel (it was already 6:00 pm!) and put together a pretty awesome picnic dinner.
Baguette, jam, cheese, nutella, fruit, cookies, pretty delicious.

So, quite an adventurous day.  One that makes me laugh to remember.  But also one I'm not too keen to repeat.

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