Wednesday, April 25, 2007

April in Paris Easter 1974 (Pt.3)

Gay Paree!
The next day, Saturday, we went down to breakfast or, in this case, petit déjeuner! It was a typical French meal comprising of crusty rolls, butter and confitures. (jam, to you!)
We were sharing the table with another couple who were a lot older than we were. It was their first trip to
Paris and we had noticed them the evening before in the lounge bar. The man, Alf, as it happened, said “Eyoop, tha goin’ ter get an eyful o’ t’tower?” I shuddered inwardly! I learned later that they came from Barnsley; I might have guessed!
Naturally, the
Eiffel Tower was a priority on our itinerary and we made our way towards it enjoying the scenery alongside the river. Iris was in a flippant mood, singing an old French song, “Sur les ponts de Paris” giving a passable impression of Eartha Kitt! We were walking hand-in-hand like a couple of teenagers but who cared? We were in Paris and we were in love!

The weather was very kind to us while we were there and our ascent up the tower really got to Iris. She’d never seen anything like it before, apart from a day-trip to Blackpool some years previously!
Naturally, we had coffee and gateaux in the café at the top of the Tower. Iris selected some postcards to send back and posted them there to get the special “Tour d’Eiffel” postmark. She was doing quite well, I reckoned. She had gone to the kiosk, bought the cards and the stamps, paid with francs and “Mercy bucketed” the sales girl. Iris was certainly turning quite Gallic!
It was quite warm for April so forsaking lunch for a baguette, we made our way to the river. There were trip boats on the
Seine and we opted for a journey downstream. There was plenty to see from the river and we both enjoyed the tranquil navigation through the heart of the city.

That evening, there was an optional trip to the Moulin Rouge. About half a dozen of us decided to go and we arrived there about 7pm. Everybody was given a half-bottle of champagne as a courtesy and the meals were absolutely the finest that Paris could offer. I remember choosing escargots in garlic butter sauce for starters followed by fillet of beef in red wine. Iris also had the beef but demurred at snails, opting for moules marinière instead.
I had seen the show a couple of times before, some years ago, but Iris had never seen anything like it. There were two hours of non-stop entertainment including, of course, the famous ‘Can-Can dance.’ She enjoyed every minute of it; she was absolutely over the moon!
We returned to the hotel in the early hours of the morning after a wonderful night and proceeded to do what every other lover in
Paris was doing!!!

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