Holiday Skating On The Champs Elysees

After we left the Eiffel Tower we walked along the Seine, crossed over, and explored the temporary holidays wonderland built on each side of the boulevard. As in prior days it was packed with people.

020To satisfy my holiday craving we bought some warm roast chestnuts from a street vendor. You eat them by peeling off the brittle outer shell then munching on the soft white nut. They are somewhat bland, but not bad.

We washed them down with piping hot glasses of spiced wine. In Paris, apparently, there are no concerns about people being injured by hot beverage spills; the glasses were filled to the rim with steaming liquid and so blazing hot that I had to put my gloves on to hold the plastic cup. It was a fine, warming concoction on a chilly evening.

There was a skating rink set up along the way, with dance music pumping, somewhat cheesy Christmas decorations on display, and skaters flying by. We stopped to enjoy the spectacle and sip our wine before heading home.

A Temporary Day Along The Champs Elysees

Yesterday we took the Metro to the Champs Elysees stop and got out to take a Christmas Day stroll down the grandest of Paris’ grand boulevards.

043The sidewalks along the section of the Champs Elysees nearest the Place de la Concorde were crammed with temporary wooden structures that looked like Alpine huts that were gaily decorated with lights and tree trimmings. There also were bright holiday decorations at the corners and on the fountains.

All of the huts were selling something. The most popular offerings were consumables, and the trade was brisk. Judging from the number of stands that were selling it, and the number of people who were drinking it, hot spiced wine is a popular Parisian treat during the holidays. It was just too early in the day for me to try it.

In addition to the spiced wine, people were noshing on hot, made-to-order crepes, hot sandwiches, popcorn, and some high-end and low-end candies. It being Christmas Day, I looked for some chestnuts roasting on an open fire, but no such luck.044