Paris, France (Paris, France)
A morning wander down to the market bore many fruits.
Then we rocked up to the catacombs, but they were fully booked until 5:45pm, so we secured our slots for that time. With two hours to kill, we strolled along the boulevards of the Cimetière du Montparnasse, where many notable people have been buried. Following the map, we tried to locate the final resting place of Samuel Beckett but were unsuccessful. Unless you've been there, you have no idea how packed and jumbled the place is! (Though you can't tell from the photo, which looks extremely well-ordered. But once you get away from the path, it's chaos.)
The little bowl on a pedestal was where an eternal fire was kept in the quarry, to promote air circulation. We managed to get some photos without people, but the site was fairly busy. One tourist in particular stood out: Crazy Mike of the Catacombs. He had somehow got it into his head that these bones weren't from cemeteries at all, and that some genocide had taken place, stating "This is like the killing fields" and when his girlfriend (with audioguide) told him all about the relocations, he declared "I don't believe it. That story is bullshit!" In one part of the catacombs he pointed upwards to tiny stalactites forming from moisture and asked "Why is that not in any other part of the tunnels?" in a skeptical voice. He seemed to believe that he had uncovered a huge conspiracy - by whom and for what reason, who knows. Towards the end of the tunnels he pointed to a stone plaque from the 1800's and exclaimed "This is brand new. Look at it!" Becoming fed up by Mike's theories, his girlfriend just said "you look at it" and resumed listening to the audioguide. The funniest part was that between expressing his far-fetched concerns, he repeatedly posed with his girlfriend for selfies in front of all the bones.
Before heading out on our overnight train to Annecy, we partook in the bottle of rosé that our host left for us and relaxed in the apartment for a spell. Trekking with our heavily laden backpacks, we made it to the Gare d'Austerlitz, and waited for our train while people played on a random free-to-use piano as a snaggletoothed hobo applauded for them.
Today's post was almost called: Conspiracy Mike and The Subterranean Hike