|The Orsay Museum in Paris|
Last evening, we were treated to a Welcome Reception and Dinner. Those in our travel group were not too jet-lagged to enjoy the evening. Started with champagne and appetizers while all crew members were introduced from the navigation crew to the kitchen group and housekeeping, along with hotel managers. Many were from Slovakia and the Czech Republic. The Chef is Czech. On a French shihp! But let me tell you, the man knows how to cook French!
The dinner was superb with many courses, each one beautifully presented by a most attentive wait staff. I was startled when I noticed that the kitchen is below the restaurant so the wait staff must carry all the food up a stairway, not an easy task with so many people to care for. I ate til I could eat no more. The dessert looked so good, creme brulee and next to it was a small piece of Belgian waffle with a scoop of ice cream and raspberry sauce. Ken told me I missed a real treat with the dessert plate.
We both slept well after going with no sleep at all on our travel day and night. Feeling a bit more human today. A sumptutious buffet breakfast greeted us this morning, including an omelet station, many choices of fruits and juices, delectable French sausages, bacon, gravy with a kind of biscuit, scrambled eggs, cereals, French toast, and trays of pastries and breads that I'll dream about when we get home.
Then it was off to see the highlights of Paris by bus. We are divided into 3 groups for the sightseeing parts of the trip. Isabelle is our tour director, a lovely young woman who is half French and half Icelandic. We drove through the heart of Paris and saw the Eiffel Tower and Arc de Triomphe up close along with palaces and embassies, parks and the Champs de Lysee with all its upscale shops, Notre Dame Cathedral and more. Ken and I left the group when we reached the Orsay Museum. It is close to the Louvre but I liked it much better. The building was once a railway station. The glassed dome and walls around it are exquisite art itself and the perfect spot to display the Impressionist art that the museum is noted for. Sculptures as well as the paintings, even furniture that is amazing art, porcelains, cameos, silver and more. All is presented beautifully.
We had gotten directions on how to take the train back to the ship, and miracle of miracles, it all worked just as it should.The sun has come out today and it is a pleasant upper 50's day so the walk back to the ship from the station was invigorating.
I don't usually post on the week-ends but will do so while traveling. There may be days when I won't be able to post, depending on what place we dock in. Tomorrw we visit Versailles and then the ship sails north along The Seine to Conflans.