Right before I left for Barcelona we were having incredibly hot summer weather in Paris. Around 33 degrees Celsius (which I'm told is around 90 degrees Fahrenheit). With temperatures like that and no air conditioning in most places, you really feel the heat and every little task becomes harder and harder to do as it drains you of all your energy. It's been brutal to say the least, but I've managed to find ways to cope.
On one of the very hot days I visited the (finally!) re-opened Catacombs. This was a great escape from the heat because it is located underground and stays very cool year round. The ossuary is a hike from most other sites and once you are there you have to walk down a very, very long and dizzying spiral staircase. The good news is that once you get to the bottom temperatures have already dropped by at least 10 degrees and you are free to spend some quality time in the dark with a lot of creepy bones!
At times, I felt like I was on the set of an Indiana Jones movie. Its just so unreal to fathom all these bones (piles and piles of them) once belonged to people, many of which were originally buried in cemeteries. I wasn't necessarily scared while down there alone, but it was surreal and a bit creepy if you actually thought about the circumstances of your surroundings. Nevertheless, it was a very interesting site and I'm glad I had the chance to check it out on such a steamy day!
A more classic Parisian ritual for cooling off is lazing in a public park, preferably one with a big fountain. While Gabby was in town we stopped by the fountain at Luxembourg Gardens and the other day I had a much needed rest at the Tuileries. I'm starting to think we need more fountains in New York!
I heard about the heatwave in New York . . . hope you are all staying cool and drinking lots of cold alcoholic beverages-errr I mean water!