Day 25: Hemingway, Obama pizza, lost items, and the Sacre Coeur

Today was a full day of touring–and it’s after midnight, so we’ll see how coherent this post is!

Walking tour of Hemingway's Paris

Walking tour of Hemingway's Paris

We began the day with a walking tour of Hemingway’s Paris, in the Latin Quarter, where, in addition to seeing places Hemingway worked, drank and lived, we also heard a gruesome tale that was the basis of Sweeney Todd, which I didn’t realize was a true story…

Apparently there were these priests who really liked these meat pies from a particular vendor, who was good friends with a particular barber, who seemed to ‘lose’ his clients quite regularly. Well, even though the priests did not know that they were eating meat pies that were a bit too realistically the body and blood, they were excommunicated for having eaten human flesh.

Having no other income, they became beggars but one day a bishop came long their street, heard the story, and allowed them to open a market to earn a living. This street is still a market street today. Rather than take our chances, we decided on some delicious looking but definitely vegetarian pizza. 

The guy who gave us our pizza asked, “Where are you from?” When I said, America, California, his first response was, “What do you think about your president?” In every place I’ve been along my trip people have asked me that–one guy, a Frenchman sitting next to me on the plane from Bangkok to Cairo, even shook my had to congratulate me for helping to elect Obama. Well, when the pizza guy asked us, I said I was very glad, but admitted that my mom is less than enthusiastic. He proceeded to tell us his opinions on the subject, which I happened to agree with, but which were entirely unprompted. It’s fascinating how willing, and how eager people are to talk about subjects that might be shied away from at home. 

After our visit to the lost and found, we stopped for a rest at this cafe where the man next to me, 83 and with a heart transplant (at least that's what I think he said, in French) befriended us.

After our visit to the lost and found, we stopped for a rest at this cafe where the man next to me, 83 and with a heart transplant (at least that's what I think he said, in French) befriended us.

After the pizza and a nutella crepe for lunch, we headed to the Service des Objets Trouves, Paris’ lost and found. Apparently stuff actually does make its way there, as did we after a few metro transfers, only to find out that if my camera had been found on the bus, and turned in, it would take them a week to get it. Argh. I’m not overly optimistic that it will be found, but I figured I should at least check. So, looks like we’ll be back to the Service des Objets Trouves again on Wednesday before leaving town…

We finished off the day with a Rick Steve’s recommended bus tour, and dinner in Montmartre after an evening view of Paris and a walk through the Sacré-Cœur–a quick one, since we were hungry after so much walking, touring, and only a bit of pizza at lunch! 

The walk back to the metro from the Sacré-Cœur was thru the Pigalle area, including the Moulin Rouge as well as many establishments that my mom and I were not going to visit!

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