Travels through Western Europe travel blog

Rumanian scammers

Heavy military presence

Alice and the Mona Lisa

Jet formation over the Louvre

Sculpture - woman worried about bird poop

A grave mountain in Barcelona


Get up early and pack our suitcases and take them to reception so they could be stored until we got back. Then down to the corner and got a cab to our meeting place near the Louvre. It was outside a gift shop so we waited a while. Cars could not get close to the museum because of Trump and the holiday, but there were groups of (mostly) Rumanian (mostly women) scammers all about. They would approach with a petition to help… any sort of cause, starving children, deaf people, all sorts of stuff. If you’d sign they’d ask for a small donation. Anyway, they tended to act in groups and pass any money off to a single guy.

Tour ‘guide’ showed up and took us into near the entrance – then gave a brief overview of what was in the museum, handed out tickets, and said goodbye… So we got in line which was long but didn’t take too much time. When we got to the gate they told us it was free to enter today – so much for the tickets!

The place was mobbed so we headed off. Alice wanted to see the Mona Lisa so we headed there first. As expected, big crowds. We stopped in one of the cafes to have a bite to eat then made our way through the museum. Really overwhelming with so many images and statues. The crowds made it very difficult to really appreciate the works so we headed on toward the exit. In the pyramid there was a flyover by many French air force planes to celebrate Bastille Day. We got a bit lost and ended up in the Louvre Mall.

We finally surfaced and there were huge crowds and music in the distance, but I was worried about additional Trump delays, so we headed back to the hotel, got our bags, and took a taxi to Orly Airport, We were two hours early and the place was a mob scene. We sat for a bit, got up, lost our seats, found out the plane was going to be up to two hours late so we sat, then got up, then lost our seats… Over four hours in the airport.

We finally took off on Vueling airlines – a no frills flight where there weren’t even snacks! We got lucky and got the exit row so plenty of leg room!

Into Barcelona and no problems. Nice efficient cab allocation system. We got to our hotel in the downtown and checked it – and there was a problem. The tour company booked the room so the credit cards didn’t match. It took about an hour to straighten that out but finally, after lots of strange connections and statements, we got it worked out. Nice room overlooking the city.

Tomorrow we tour and to the beach!

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