impressions on impressionists and chocolate cake
deJean waits for a train at the D'Orsay.
deCol waits for the next one.
deJean along the Seine.
deCol likes Notre Dame because it makes her look more petite.

By now you can guess what time deJean and deCol stumbled into the daylight to begin their day at the Musee D'Orsay. They decided to walk over to the museum, taking in the feel of the city on the last day, rather than wizzing through it in a cab. Plus it looked pretty close to the hotel, according to the map.

The map was wrong. It was a very long walk, or they were both getting more lazy with time. They had already both agreed, the way the two of them ate and drank, they'd both die of gout if they stayed there much longer.

The Musee D'Orsay certainly housed many beautiful works, if you could see them. deCol and deJean were a little puzzled by some of the displays. Almost every Lautrec, Degas, and Gauguin were in tiny rooms off of the main hall, and were trapped behind glass walls. The lighting in those tiny rooms was probably only a little better than it had been when it was some railroad clerk's office. The lighting was from the ceiling, and it pointed onto the glass.

This allowed the viewer a lovely image of his or her own reflection, but left viewing the actual painting almost impossible. Which is why they spotted so many greasy nose, chin and forehead prints all over the glass. People were obviously trying to get past the glare to see the painting behind it. deCol found that if you got down on your haunches, you could see them ok. Or if deJean stood behind her and blocked out the ceiling light.

While suffering under these circumstances, deCol and deJean noticed that the same group of people seemed to be following their same path through the little, winding rooms. Including one odd couple, a man and a woman. The woman insisted on reading aloud every possible word printed in the guide book. And she was loud, as though she were onstage and needed to project to the person in the last row. The man she was with just stood there, head slightly tilted down, slowly nodding. When she was finished bellowing the information, she'd shut up long enough for him to go have a look. Then onto the next piece, and she was back at it again. deJean suggested that they skip a few rooms and escape from them.

ENNUI! deCol had had all she could take of beauty. It was all too much. Too much culture, too much talent, too many gorgeous and amazing things. Her senses were dulled and she could take no more. "France has too much damn art" she was often heard saying.

deJean was just saying "Pas de flash!" to anyone who looked American and was holding a camera. "Pas de flash!" he would admonish them while shaking his head in disgust. This amused deCol very much.

They escaped from the Musee D'Orsay and headed back towards the Ile St. Louis for some shopping. It was a beautiful day, and they took their time wandering through the streets, exploring and taking pictures.

deCol bought her weight in supplies from L'Occitane, a gorgeous little shop positively filled to the brim with thousands of essentials. She was bummed out later, when she returned to the states, and realized that that very shop sells one of the most remarkable hair treatments. Oh well, another reason to rush back.

deJean had to buy jelly and jam. He knew of a place that sold a kind he especially liked, and that added to the incredible weight of all of their shopping bags. Naturally, they had to stop in little cafes during this trip to take a rest every now and again. They tried to remember to keep track of the time, since they wanted to get back to the hotel to freshen up and go to their favorite restaurant before their trip ended.

Once back at the hotel, they started to sort out all of their purchases, and started packing a few things. deCol had purchased another suitcase while there, so she shoved all her dirty laundry into that. Both deCol and deJean had been collecting little trinkets for some of this kids back home. Candies and souvenirs, money and free shampoos from the hotel, all that kind of silly stuff. deCol remembers her grandmother coming back from trips with stuff like that for her and her sisters.

They dressed for dinner, having already asked the folks down at the front desk to make their dinner reservations for them, and off they went. deColette is very sad that this will be her last, fabulous meal. deJean promises her three lemon tarts in the morning, just to try to cheer her up.

Everyone at La Rotisserie d'en Face is friendly when you have a reservation. deCol and deJean chatted with the waiters and waitresses and the whole restaurant has a festive atmosphere. What the heck, it's Friday night, after all. One of the waitresses from the other night remembered us, and came over to make sure that we were both going to order the chocolate cake. We assured her that we were.

The meal was superb, and they both tried to make it last as long as possible, but eventually they had to leave. They went back to the hotel and decided that it was entirely too early to go to bed. So they went back out to les Deux Maggots for a nightcap. The place was really jumping. They found a great table outside, directly across the street from le Saint Germain des Pres church, and ended up closing the place with a nice American couple who ended up sitting next to them.

Neither of them felt like ending the night, but les Deux Maggots was closing and it was now 2am and they had a 7am wake up call. And there is still all that packing to do, so reluctantly, our pair walks back to the hotel. Very, very slowly.

day nine