On December 26th we went to the Eiffel Tower. It was very cold but luckily it was one of the clearer weather days, which worked out perfectly for some sightseeing. After going into the Eiffel Tower we wandered over to the little Christmas village - Village de Noel, I think - that had been set up in the big plaza area across from the Tower. There were a lot of booths selling food and knicknacks, as well as music and an outdoor skating rink. We found an empty table next to the skating rink to sit and rest at, and since the view of the Eiffel Tower was pretty good from there I decided to try painting. I was determined to do at least one on location painting while we were in Paris.
I had to work fast because my fingers were getting really cold, and the sun was rapidly setting. The orange lights on the Eiffel Tower turned on as we were sitting there. While I was painting, a small group of kids stopped by the edge of the skating rink and watched me. They started talking to me, but since I don't understand French I could only smile and shrug. The kids had a hastily whispered conference and then attempted to talk to me again, with the lead girl haltingly saying, "You draw bee-yoo-tiful!" I laughed and thanked them. They giggled and skated away. Cute kids.
After finishing the little watercolor painting, we went inside one of the food tents so I could hold my sketchbook by a heat lamp to get it to dry. The cold was what kept me from doing much painting outside - too hard on the fingers and the paint just took too long to dry. Once I could close my sketchbook, we walked around and took some more photos of the Eiffel Tower.
And the next morning Jeff asked me to marry him. Definitely the best Christmas break ever!