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Sam’s tonsils were still giving him trouble, so after breakfast our first stop was the pharmacy. We called Dad for his birthday and headed off for a day in Paris.

We finally found the Metro station at La Defense, the impressive part of the town consisting of the Grande Arche and other important defence buildings. Our first stop was the Arc de Triomphe and then we headed for Montmartre and the Sacre Coeur cathedral. Last time we visited there, we had Hannah with us and she was sick with migraine. this time Sam was not well. It seems this place is not a good one to bring children to. Sam was well enough to insist that we walk the many stairs to the cathedral rather than wait for the funiculaire. We walked quietly around the cathedral as Mass was being celebrated on the main altar.

Sam enjoyed exploring the artists’ area behind Sacre Coeur at Montmarte.

We then wandered around the artists’ area of Montmartre, having had a lunch of crepes and coffee at one of the cafes. Sam was interested in the work of the portrait artists and was almost tempted to have his face immortalised in crayon. The area below Montmartre has many souvenir stores so we made some purchases there and in the fabric shops that were also most plentiful.

We were soon back on the Metro to go across town to visit Notre Dame cathedral. We joined part of a guided tour and learned a little of the meaning of the stained glass windows and the statues around the altar section. Sam bought a candle and said a prayer for his parents.

Sam’s energy was waning, so we headed back for our hotel. We stopped at the supermarket to buy some meat, cheese, and salad for dinner. We spent the evening watching French television and Peter used the hotel computer to respond to some emails as the network connection was still not working.