Karen, Lee and Brian Duquette in Paris, France in 1984
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Karen, Lee and Brian Duquette's FLASHBACK
Paris, France

July 21 - 24, 1984
Page 1 of 2

On the first night that the tour bus arrived in Paris, around 8 p.m., most of the people on the bus went to eat in the hotel. But Karen, Lee and Brian Duquette went walking to find a local restaurant. They found a little French Restaurant about two blocks from the hotel. The waitress did not speak English, but the menu had English written under the French. They ordered hamburgers and they were served without rolls. But French bread was served on the side. The hamburger had an EGG on top of it. It was inexpensive hamburger meat and was a bit chewy. The Egg made it out-of-the-ordinary. (NOTE: Later, they saw pizza with an egg on it, but they did not order it). While dining Karen and Lee Duquette enjoyed talking to two American ladies in their late 50's who were seated next to them.

Their son, Brian Duquette, age 15. wanted to go back to the hotel, so his parents said okay since they felt like it was not that far away. (That was not the smartest response, however.) On the way to the hotel, a French kid approached Brian and started questioning him about how much money he had and if his necklace was real gold. After Brian told him that he had no money and his necklace was not gold, the kid left. (Brian later found out that he was lucky because many others in the tour group were not so lucky as time went on, and many of them got pick-pocketed. So Brian did not wander alone ever again while on this trip.

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Everyone had only three days to enjoy Paris and stayed at the Bagnolet Novatel Hotel. When Karen, Lee and Brian left their rooms on the very next day, they took the subway into Paris. Their suitcases were in their rooms and locked, as was the door to the room. But intruders entered their hotel room and cut open the zippers on the suitcases. Nothing was taken because there were no valuables in the suitcases nor in the room. However, the luggage had to be tied closed for the rest of the trip.

The weather was very hot here and there was no air conditioning, not even in the hotel, banks, stores or restaurants. Other than that, the hotel was okay. There were small packets of bubble bath in the hotel. But no shower curtain, so the entire floor got soaked when anyone took a shower. It was necessary to kneel in the tub in order to shower because It was a hand-held shower spray with a very short cord.

The hotel had a stocked refrigerator with miniature bottles of soft drinks, liquor, champagne, mixers, etc. Of course, they checked it daily to see what anyone used and charged extra high prices for everything.

Unfortunately, the 1984 photos of the hotel have been lost. (This page was not posted on this website until 2023).

Cadeaux Novotel
Below: By the time Karen and Lee Duquette reached Paris France, they had made friends with Rita, Stan, and their 23-year old son Paul, who live in New Jersey. They all stayed together for most of the Paris trip. They went to the outdoor Paris Cafe with them and Rita spoke some French and did an excellent job at reading the French menus and communicating with everyone. She was a real help when it came to the language and ordering food.

Throughout this trip, everyone thought the French pastry was a bit disappointing and they threw out a large variety of pastry that they had bought. It sure looked good, but tasted awful.
Stan, Rita, Paul, Brian, Lee and Karen Lee and Karen Duquette in Paris, France
As they ate at other restaurants in Paris, they discovered that most restaurants brought different silverware after each course instead of putting a bunch of silverware on the table all at once as most restaurants in the USA do. This of course, was in the better restaurants where even napkins were put on the table. No, napkins were not always available in the less expensive restaurants.
general information about Paris France

FYI: In public restrooms the water in the sinks were turned on by using foot pedals. Karen Duquette liked that.

Below; Tourists got around by using the Paris Metro (known in English as a Subway). The underground system had many interconnected lines that linked with other trains.

Metro ticket
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Below: The Hotel Des Invalides in Paris, France stands 95 meters high. It is an Historical landmark. Daily admission is charged. This was the church where royal mass took place during the reign of Lois XIV. Then it housed the Tomb of Napoleon I in the 19th century and provided shelter for Allied pilots in the second World War.

The Hotel Des Invalides in Paris France Tomb of Napoleon I
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Below: The Eiffel Tower, which is the landmark of Paris, was illuminated by night lights.
about the Eiffel Tower
The Eiffel Tower at night Paris postcard

Below: Karen Duquette bought several postcards of the Eiffel Tower, just in case her photos did not come out well. Plus she knew she would not be at the same angles as the postcard shots. It was a good thing that she did because most of her photos from this time frame have been lost through the years.

The Eiffel Tower and fountains The Eiffel Tower and fountains
The Eiffel Tower and gold statues
The Eiffel Tower The Eiffel Tower
Brian, Karen and Lee Duquette at the Eiffel Tower

Below: Views from inside the Eiffel Tower

Visiting the Eiffel Tower and climbing to the top of the tower to catch the panoramic views of the city was the biggest highlight of this trip. Standing tall at 300 meters, the Eiffel Tower is the tallest building in Paris, so the Duquette's were able to enjoy a glimpse of some of the city's major attractions from the top. Each level of the Eiffel Tower gave them unique views of the city as shown below.

Below: Located on the other bank of Seine,
towards the north of the tower,
is the Trocadero area, which is made of the square
and the gardens.

Below View of The Champs de Mars,
a large park located in front of the Eiffel Tower.

Trocadero area square and gardens Champs de Mars

Below: The Seine River goes through the heart of Paris, dividing the city into two parts— the left and the right banks. The photo below shows the beautiful bridges that connect the two sides.

Seine River and bridges

Below: Several views taken from inside the Eiffel Tower.

view taken from inside the Eiffel Tower view taken from inside the Eiffel Tower
view taken from inside the Eiffel Tower view taken from inside the Eiffel Tower
view taken from inside the Eiffel Tower view taken from inside the Eiffel Tower
view taken from inside the Eiffel Tower view taken from inside the Eiffel Tower
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Below: Basilica-of-the Sacred Court of Montmatre (The Sacré-Cœur Basilica) located on top of Montmatre Hill. It can be spotted from the Eiffel Tower. The Cathedral, in fact, is the second highest point in Paris. It was built on top of the Montmartre hill, at a height of 130 meters. Both the dome and the bell tower is 91 meters tall. So, the total height of the Sacre-Coeur is of 213 meters above sea level. Since the Eiffel Tower is 300 meters tall, the Sacre-Coeur takes second place in the highest points of Paris.
(at least in 1984)

Basilica-of-the Sacred Court of Montmatre
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Below: Arc De Triomphe with its Eternal Flame and Tomb of the Unknown Soldier of World War 1, plus many different sculptures which were quite impressive. It is one of the most easily recognizable attractions in Paris. The 160 feet high monument is quite easy to spot from the Eiffel Tower, as shown a bit above.

Arc De Trumphe  information Arc De Trumphe
decor on The Arc De Trumphe
Brian Duquette at the Arc De Trumphe Arc De Trumphe
Arc De Trumphe art sculptures Arc De Trumphe art sculpture
Arc De Trumphe postcard

Below: The Eternal Flame and Tomb of The Unknown Soldier from
World War 1 at Arc De Triomphe

Eternal Flame and Tomb of The Unknown Soldier

While visiting the Arc De Triomphe, Karen Duquette noticed lots of people running toward the street. There was also lots of cheering and yelling. So Karen, Lee and Brian followed the crowd. At first they could not see anything, but they knew it was an important cross country bicycle race that was happening. The crowd was already 10 people deep, so Karen climbed upon Lee's shoulders to take pictures. She just snapped away, without being able to aim the camera or make any dial adjustments of any kind. The bicycles moved so fast and it was not easy being on Lee's shoulders while wearing a sundress. Behind the bicycles came lots of cars with spare bicycles on their roofs. Unfortunately, those photos cannot be found at this time.

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After the bicycle race, Karen, Lee and Brian went to The Palace of Versailles. it was huge and had many works of art inside. The front of the courtyard of the palace was all in cobblestone. It was surrounded by a large gate with gold trimming. There were very large gardens and lots of fountains and more in the back courtyard. Things like this are indescribable, and it is a shame that so many of the photos got lost long before Karen Duquette made this website.

Rita, Lee, Stan and Brian Lee Duqtte and Brian Duquette in Paris
Brian Duquette at Versailles in Paris
Palace of Versailles gate Palace of Versailles gate
guard at Palace of Versailles

Below: The Palace of Versailles is a former royal residence commissioned by King Louis XIV located in Versailles, about 12 miles west of Paris, France. The palace is owned by the French Republic and since 1995 has been managed, under the direction of the French Ministry of Culture, by the Public Establishment of the Palace, Museum and National Estate of Versailles. About 15,000,000 people visit the palace, park, or gardens of Versailles every year, making it one of the most popular tourist attractions in the world.

Palace of Versailles
Palace of Versailles statue and gardens
gardens at The Palace of Versailles gardens at The Palace of Versailles
Lee and Brian Duquette in the gardesn Brian and Lee Duquette
gardens at The Palace of Versailles gardens at The Palace of Versailles

Below: Karen and Lee Duquette in The Mirror room inside Versailles

Mirror room inside Versailles
Brian Duquette and his father

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BELOW: Notre-Dame de Paris; meaning "Our Lady of Paris", is referred to simply as Notre-Dame. It is a medieval Catholic cathedral on an island in the Seine River, in the 4th sub-division of Paris, France. The cathedral, dedicated to the Virgin Mary, is considered one of the finest examples of French Gothic architecture. Several attributes set it apart from the earlier Romanesque style, particularly its pioneering use of the rib vault and flying buttress, its enormous and colorful rose windows, and the naturalism and abundance of its sculptural decoration. Notre-Dame also stands out for its three pipe organs (one historic) and its immense church bells.

Cathedrale of Notre-Dame de Paris sign
Cathedrale of Notre-Dame de Paris

Below: The Cathedrale de Notre-Dame de Paris, was an amazing beautiful church with fancy windows. The few photos that Karen Duquette still has do not do the windows justice.

Cathedrale de Notre-Dame de Paris, church window Cathedrale de Notre-Dame de Paris, church windo

look below

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