Thursday June 7th, 1990

Arrived in Paris, raining. It's been raining everyday which kind of sucks for us touring, but up until now, it was just sprinkling. It's downright crummy now which definitely dulled my 1st impression of Paris. Though, I'm sure that once the sun shines, so will this city. This city is VERY old. There is so much history here.. I'm going to extend my budget to $50 per day because I can't see or do anything otherwise. Good thing the room is only $17/night.

Dinner was absolutely delicious - true to what they say about the food! Afterward, we strolled and ate crepes.

HDR photo by Trey Ratcliff, Stuck In Customs

This morning, we went to Musee D' Orsay. Spectacular! VERY beautiful! It's a former train station converted to an impressionistic museum. Matise, Van Gough, DeGas,Monet, Renior, together with some impressive sculptures. It's an architectural wonder. No one speaks English - or even tries. Communication is very difficult and frustrating. Tomorrow, hopefully we'll get some clear skies and see Notre Dame Cathedral and Eiffel Tower.

HDR photo by Trey Ratcliff, Stuck In Customs

Tonight was nice, we walked down Champs Eyleses, the famous French street with fine shops and great cafes. Paris at night was definitely magical. I loved seeing the bus stops with the fashion models on Vogue covers.

HDR photo by Trey Ratcliff, Stuck In Customs

Friday June 8th, 1990

Went to Notre Dame Cathedral. Spectacular and breathtaking! It's the most magnificent cathedral I've ever seen! It's massive and architecturally stunning. It had the most beautiful stained glass windows. The ceilings are about 200 feet tall! It truly makes you feel the spiritual presence of something larger than man. I kept thinking of the Hunchback, though.

HDR photo by Trey Ratcliff, Stuck In Customs

Later we strolled to the Georges Pompadue Center of Modern Art. What a CONTRAST! It was the most unique post-modern structure ever seen. Loved the glass and industrial steel elements, and the Miro-inspired dancing water garden. I only recently completed my art history minor at Tulane and was digging that I had just studied and recognized the master works by Leger, Dali, Miro, Picaso, DeBaffet, DeKooning, Kandinsky as well as some really modern objects of 1990. Very fulfilling jaunt to my favorite genre of art that I studied at school. After dinner, we saw the Eiffel Tower at night. It was simply divine! It's so romantic here at night, and while I'm without a lady on this cross-continental buddy trip, I'm enjoying myself to the hilt!

Photo by Stefano Pinci

Saturday June 9th, 1990
It's amazing what the weather can do. It rained all day again! Such a bummer! I'm really feeling down on this city right now. The people don'e even attempt to try and understand what you are saying. Just to go some place and sit down for a coffee costs an arm and a leg. Rain making me grouchy.

Sunday June 10, 1990
This was the most complete day in Paris. Went to the Louvre. It's enormous. I think it's the largest gallery in the world. I mean, can anything be bigger than this? Again, we saw all the major works of art that I studied in art survey at school, which I really enjoyed. Some of the paintings on the walls were enormous. How do they paint such staggeringly large images on canvas? The Mona Lisa was cool to see, but I never really got all the hype.

HDR photo by Trey Ratcliff, Stuck In Customs

After many hours, we needed a break. We were getting art fatigue. So where did we go next? Another museum! We went to the Muse D' Armery (The Museum of War) where Napolean's tomb was kept. Napoleon was worshiped by the French and his tomb was as large as the Lincoln monument. Inside was section of the museum devoted to WW II and the Holocaust. Seeing pictures of the concentration camps was extremely distrubing. After seeing the pictures, Danny is changing his mind about to going on to Germany with us. I can see why.

After the museum we finished our final night in Paris with a sunset trip to the top of the Eifel Tower. It was easily the most scenic and beautiful view of Paris. Rolling grass lawns surrounded by giant trees evenly planted in neat rows (like Oak Ally in New Orleans, only 100 times larger),. Water fountains shot up like hot springs in the earth - completely surrounded this magnificently constructed sculpture of steel. Me, Danny and Steve went to the top and had the most stunning view of the entire city. We were able to see every historical monument and cool sight from the top. I took many pictures so if you reading this and looking at them at the same time, then you're hooked and can envision what I was seeing - it was breathtaking! On top of the Eifel Tower, I bumped into Bryan Sher! That was so random - and I was psyched to see him. Danny, Steve and I are the picture kings - we took 4 rolls in just one day (editors note: lol). I feel so much happier than yesterday. I'm telling you, the bad weather really crushed my spirit in this city, but we were redeemed today!

HDR photo by Trey Ratcliff, Stuck In Customs

MJ on top of Paris:

Monday June 11th, 1990
Lazy day. Did wash, then went to Jim Morrison's grave at the Cemeteiere Pare Laishei. It was a beautiful cemetary where many illustrious personalities were buried. It was a cool thing to do and glad we checked it out.

On our way back, we walked down Champes Elyses and that was exciting too, but I kept looking for all the famous Parisian good looking super-models. Didn't see many attractive people here, actually. Wonder what that's about. We just saw very gaunt, high-cheek-boned (but sunken cheeks) skeletal looking people. No one uses deodorant here. What's up with that? I don't dislike this city, but I don't really love it either. It has so much to offer, but the attitude and vibe of the people are an issue for me. I would love to come back with my wife one day, with lots of cash, I'm sure that would be a much different trip. :) If you haven't been yet, you can look at my picutres, I'm sure they'll suffice.

Next stop: Munich, Germany and Lotz. What is Lotz you ask? That's easy...lotz and lotz of beer!