Finally, I am in Paris, a city I always desired to visit but couldn’t for unexplained reasons, although it’s less than 3 hours journey on Eurostar. On my first day I got to see the basilica of Sacred Heart which is walking distance from the hotel, only awkward thing was it is located at the highest point in Paris.
It is a beautiful Sunday morning and I am leaving for Eiffel tower on subway to travel to Trocadero which is not the nearest metro station but the view of Eiffel tower is the best from there, I have been told. It is one beautiful vista of Eiffel Tower I must say from this end; it’s good 25 minute walk from the station. River Seine runs besides Eiffel tower. Home Notre Dame and the Louvre sit beside the River Seine, looking out on the river. Fences on both sides of river are filled with love padlocks, love padlock is a padlock where sweethearts lock to a bridge, fence, or similar public fixture to symbolize their love and its key is thrown away to symbolize unbreakable love. In January 2014, a campaign and petition, No Love Locks was founded by two Americans being in Paris in an effort to save the city’s historic bridges and monuments from the overwhelming number of locks.
Now I am standing right under the 324 meter high astounding Eiffel tower next to Alexandre Eiffel’s statue. I am totally lost and thinking how this tower got erected over 100 years ago. I have decided to take a lift to the crest of Eiffel Tower to view the city of Paris.
I must say it is an experience to touch at the top of the Eiffel Tower; when I left this morning it was clear blue sky and sun was shining but since I have reached the top, it has been raining – a completely different view.
Few words about the founder of Eiffel tower:
Alexandre Gustave Eiffel was a French civil engineer and designer. He established his name with various bridges for the French railway network, most famously the Garabitviaduct. The bridge was built between 1882 and 1884 opened in 1885. He is best known for the world-famous Eiffel Tower, built for the 1889 Universal Exposition in Paris.
I was unaware of the fact that he has contributed to build the Statue of Liberty. In 1881 Eiffel was contacted by Auguste Bartholdi who was in need of an engineer to facilitate him to realise the Statue of Liberty. Some work had already been borne out by Eugène Viollet-Le-Duc, but he had died in 1879. Eiffel devised a complex body part consisting of a four-legged pylon to support the copper sheeting which made up the body of the statue. The entire statue was erected at the Eiffel works in Paris before being dismantled and shipped to the United States
Eiffel tower had been a subject of some controversy, drawing criticism both from those who did not believe it feasible and from those who objected on artistic grounds. But as work began at the Champ de Mars, a petition was sent to the Minister of Works, and was published by Le Temps:
“To bring our arguments home, imagine for a moment a giddy, ridiculous tower dominating Paris like a gigantic black smokestack, crushing under its barbaric bulk Notre Dame, the Tour de Saint-Jacques, the Louvre, the Dome of les Invalides, the Arc de Triomphe, all of our humiliated monuments will disappear in this ghastly dream. And for 25 years … we shall see stretching like a blot of ink the hateful shadow of the hateful column of bolted sheet metal”
Work along the foundations started on 28 January 1887. Completed on March 31, 1889, the tower was the world’s tallest man-made structure for 41 years,however the tallest structure in Paris. The tower has been re painted 21 times since its construction which requires 60 tons of paint.
I must add that, I had the most perfectly baked pizza near Eiffel tower…….