Sam au Louvre
Today was another successful day that started out with picking up my museum pass. I could've taken the metro to get to the tourist center, but I ate an unfortunately massive breakfast in an attempt to talk to my roommates longer, so I decided that walking there would be best. At around 8 am, the streets were quiet and it seemed like all of Paris was still asleep. I mapped out my route before I left the hostel, but I still got lost in the tight and winding streets. Eventually I discovered that there are in fact streets signs--they're hanging on the sides of corner buildings. If those didn't help, I could dash into a Metro stop to reorient myself with a big and clear map.
I left early enough that I could take my time on the way. I glanced into churches and other buildings of interest on the way. The architecture everywhere was stunning.
Museum pass obtained, I headed to the Louvre. On an early Monday morning, it wasn't too busy. My pass let me skip the worst of the lines.
It was interesting to compare my Louvre visit in fourth grade to my visit now. When I was 9 years old, I knew of the Mona Lisa, thought the Egyptian department was really interesting, and appreciated the art in general but didn't know the history behind it. Today, I walked into the Greco-Roman statuary section and I cried. As a Greek and Roman classics enthusiast, it was entirely overwhelming. I got to see some of my favorite statues as well as some of my favorite figures from history and myth.
I could've spent days in that section alone, but I wanted to see as much of the Louvre as I could. Another highlight was the Egyptian section. Seeing mummies and sarcophagi was cool, but what I loved most was seeing little bits of jewelry and beads and mundane things like toilet devices. It was amazing to think that people thousands of years ago wore and used these things as part of their everyday life, and they were real people, and now they're long gone but I'm standing a few feet from part of their life that has lasted all this time.
Next I saw a variety of paintings. Some were surprisingly huge (Liberty Leading the People) or small (Mona Lisa). It was chill-inducing to see such famous paintings in person and fun to find less well-known paintings that I loved.
I saw thousands of pieces of art but it was still hard knowing that there was so much that I didn't see. I might have to go back another day.
Deciding that I wanted the best day of my life to continue as such, I walked over to a comic shop by the Notre Dame. Finding the street where it was located was a bit like finding the Room of Requirement from Harry Potter. After about 30 minutes of circling the area, I found it, and it was worth the search.
Then began the long walk home. After all the walking I did earlier in the day, the last couple miles were excruciating. I didn't have a single regret, though.
Now I'm back at the hostel. As I was typing this, a new roommate walked in. She lives in Germany and is traveling to New Zealand next. We might hang out somewhere tomorrow afternoon. It's nice to be around people my age who are so friendly; it helps with homesickness.
It's getting pretty late so I'm going to grab a quick bite to eat in the neighborhood. Tomorrow will feature the Musée d'Orsay and who knows what else!