I have been lying in bed, two dogs pressed like hot water bottles to my side for the past week. Watching bad TV and sneezing until I thought my sore throat was completely etched. Gah. I'm sorry for the tardy end to this lengthy adventure. (Who knew you could pack so much into three days? And so little into seven?)
Hud needed to have the French national sandwich, the Croque Madame! So we stopped off for a bite to eat at a little bistro. As you do.
I had a beautiful Caprese salad. They peeled the tomatoes! Fresh Mozerella! Giant fragrant basil!
Fortified, it was off to pay our respects to Napoleon Bonaparte at the Hotel des Invalides.
Napoleon's Tomb rests at the base of a rotunda, under the glow of a golden altar.
You enter by way of stairs on the backside of the altar and between two giant statues.
That's my red head on the lower right. His big toe was the length of my hand.
Above the doorway is a quote by Napoleon, "I want my ashes to rest on the banks of the Seine, amid the French people that I loved so much."
He rests inside of series of caskets on the bottom floor past the entry to the war hero catacombs where his son lays.
On the walls surrounding him are scenes of him as a Grecian god, enumerating his many conquests.
At the rear of the tomb is a gold encrusted statue of the emperor.
We turned to go back upstairs.
Past the catacombs of war heroes.
We made our way back up the marble stairs.
Out by the altar.
To view the tombs of other notable war heroes of France. Lyautey, Marshall of France who passed in 1934.
And the tomb of Marshall Foch, from the First World War among others.
But the day was getting late and we made the long stroll up under the Eiffel Tower and back to the hotel for a brief nap before going to the Eiffel Tower for New Year's Eve!
It was simply the best New Year's Eve of my life. Thank you, my sweet husband for such a beautiful memory. I'll treasure it always.
I hope each of you are as blessed as I am.