Monday, December 15, 2014

The Louvre/Our Last Day in France

Monday August 26th

Even though I didn't want it to, our last day in France had crept up on us. While I was tired and ready to see Garrett and our two cat sons, I was not at all ready to go back home. I swear I would live in Europe if it were feasible.

I'm getting to where I am having a hard time remembering exactly what we did, and since I didn't write in my journal everyday like I promised myself I would, I kind of have to wing it. 

Mom and I slept in that morning and then met the girls at the mall. This mall was HUGE, like 7 stories, and was home to some of the most expensive things. We left with a couple of souvenirs, but none of the Charlotte Olympia or Alice & Olivia things I wanted but couldn't afford.

Later, we all went to the Louvre. At this point I was about museum'ed out. We had been to so many! But, nonetheless, it is the Louvre and it's not everyday you get to go there. We had a tour guide and we only saw the "big" things. This was by far the most awesome and encompassing museum I have ever visited. You could spend all day there, hell all month, and still not see everything. My favorite thing about this museum was that it wasn't all paintings. There were paintings of course, but also sculptures and ruins. Unfortunately, it was insanely crowded. 

I don't have a ton of pictures because I actually didn't even bring my camera this day. Just my trusty iPhone! One thing I learned from this trip: carrying around a big camera gets old!

One of my very favorite things I have ever seen to this day is this Sphinx. The Great Sphinx of Tanis. For some reason this half lion, half King really mesmerized me and still does to this day. It also creeps me out and gives me the willies a little bit.

It weighs 24 tons and is made from granite. It is huge and definitely awe inspiring. The creepy part? It is so old. It's the oldest thing I have ever seen. It was inscribed with Pharaoh's names that date back to 1929 BC. BEFORE CHRIST! Archaeologists think that it actually dates back to an even older period- 2600 BC. Just think about that for a second. It's mind-blowing that something that ancient Egyptian Pharaohs created is still around today. Ahhhhhh! My mind is blown. 

Side story: One night Garrett and I were laying in bed talking about this Sphinx and how creepy it would be if you woke up one night and it was just there, in your room. I mean, it's got to be haunted. See? I told you it was creepy. 

One of the next things we saw that I got excited about was Venus de Milo.

I am definitely no art connoisseur, but as soon as I saw this I recognized it. This sculpture is believed to be of Aphrodite and was found in Greece in 1820. The sculptor is unknown and she is dated back to about 120 BC. When in the presence of things that are so incredibly old, I always think about the things they would have seen if they had eyes. It's incredible all of the things, people, and era's that have come and gone while this statue remains. 

Last, but not least, the Mona Lisa was also something that I was really excited about seeing. 

That painting had more security than Taylor Swift. It was encased, you couldn't get all the way up to it, and there were guards there. Also, it was fight to the death to be able to get as close as I did. That room was crowded and people were pushing each other to get up to it. You bet your ass I pushed my way to the very front. 

The painting in the center of this picture is the Mona Lisa, that is how many people were crowded around her.

Everyone had warned me that I would be disappointed in the Mona Lisa because it is so small, so I wasn't surprised by the size at all. The fact that that is the real thing is what is so spectacular, not the size. It is worth it to get past the crowd just to say you have seen it.

That night we went to bed fairly early after getting all of our belongings packed up and ready to go. The next morning we were shuttled to the airport and flown home. That was it. The trip I had anticipated for so long was over. And it had been amazing. Something I will never forget!

After a long flight, a several hour lay over in Dallas, a short flight to Denver, and 306839 tissues (I had a wicked cold), I was home with my little family.