Monday, June 23, 2014

Pigale and Montmarte - Sacre Coeur Day 11

 Today we decided we would take a little stroll around Pigale, the part of town where you will find the Moulin Rouge.  I overheard a young British girl say to her friends, "Really that's it, it sounds so romantic to say we are at the Moulin Rouge, shit it's like one of our shitty old pubs back home."  Pretty well sums it up actually.  The Moulin Rouge sits faded red between two rather unremarkable white buildings, like some weird windmill in a town full of filth.  The Pigale area, apparently meaning Pig Alley, is the red light district.  Every other window is filled with sex toys and skimpy lingerie.  On the train over,I was confronted by a woman, well I think it was a woma.  She looked like she had had a bad dose of botox and acne scars, well let's say she wasn't a beauty.  She sat with a friend a darker haired version of the first, drinking wine from a glass in the train, with the bottle squeezed between her legs.  She said something to me snarling really, I had no idea what she said, I smiled and she snarled a little more.  I mumbled Merci, what the!!!!! What was I thanking her for ha ha!  She glared at me, her friend gave her a dig in the side.  Everyone on the train looked the other way.  Adrian was a bit away from me, he could hear her talking but didn't know she was talking to me.  A gypsy woman jumped on the train and started singing, weird lady sang along and at the next stop I rushed over to where Adrian was standing.  Far out.
We took a very brief walk around Pigale and headed up to the Sacre Coeur.  There is a Funicular there now so you don't have to walk the hundreds of stairs, that Monmartre is notorious for.  For the cost of a metro ticket you get to stand in a little glass sauna and ride up the staircase.  This is the skyline from the Sacre Coeur, the pictures above.
 Take a stroll around the back of the big church and you will find some little laneways, away from all the crowds.  You might even find people having a picnic lunch/celebration.
You might see this beautiful vine covered walkway.
Maybe you catch a glimpse of another skyline, the one that is Montmarte.  
Then never ever if you can possibly avoid it catch the RER Blue line.  It is always having difficulties and today we spent 40 mins roaming around the Gare De Nord trying to find the Blue line that would bring us home.  Little did we know that it was once again not working.  That's the problem when all the notices are written in freaking French.  Everyone else is making their way to the alternative train platform, we are roaming up and down miles and bloody miles of terminal trying to find a bloody train that isn't ever coming.  I seriously had a panic attack, I felt like I was going to be eternally stuck in the bloody train station.  Finally home, I needed a vodka and a sleep.  Tonight we are going to L'Orangerie for dinner with Stuart and Darlene, and if I hear another bloody siren or horn toot, I am going to stick something in my ears so I go deaf.
Till Tomorrow


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