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Above Paris

I’ve been above Paris in two ways: by book and by Eiffel Tower. The book Above Paris, with photographs by Robert Cameron and text by Pierre Salinger, is a collection of aerial photographs taken over Paris in 1984. The book includes historical maps and drawings, and is divided into sections on Paris, the periphery and the environs, and Ile de France (the region around Paris).

I have also seen Paris from the second level and the very sommet (top) of the Eiffel Tower. The second level views on that clear mid-September day looked very much like the photographs in Above Paris: buff-colored buildings with canyons of dark green trees, accented with exciting round and curved landmarks.

When I took the  elevator to the sommet, it was hard to see the area around the tower. You could see things off in the distance (like the Longchamps racecourse), but those areas were a long metro ride away, not like the things you’d be seeing once you descended and walked away from the tower . . . like the wonderful crepes place where I bought a big folded pancake of ham and cheese.

Visitors should save some euros and skip the trip to the sommet. The views from the second level were like looking at Cameron and Salinger’s book but with a steady breeze and a good crepe to look forward to.

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