Finishing the pictures from our recent trip to Paris, I thought I would end with a piece of architecture that universally symbolizes France, and especially Paris. This structure is adored by visitors and shunned, like an ostentatious painting hung in the guest bedroom, by Parisians. Debate over whether or not the tower is a work of art, or a gaudy iron monstrosity, has gone on for decades.
Originally the tower was built for the 1889 World’s Fair by the engineer Gustave Eiffel. Its permit was for twenty years, after which it was to be gifted to the city and dismantled. During the years it stood, it became an integral part of the growth of broadcasting. Antennas worked very well high up on the tower. I could also imagine that it brought in quite a pretty penny seeing how popular it had become. Over 200 million people have visited the Eiffel Tower, and that milestone was set back in 2002. Obviously, since it is such a tall building, you can see it from almost anywhere in the city of Paris. But to experience it like so many people have, you have to see it up close.
From the base one feels like an ant. I remember looking around to make sure I wasn’t shrinking, and was just as tall as the other tourists, so I could regain my sense of scale. Strangely though, just as the giant erector set seems massive, it also gives the appearance of fragility because of all the space between the giant girders. If you visit Paris, spend an afternoon there if you want to ascend it, or climb to one of the bottom tires for a meal, but I think what makes Paris great is elsewhere. It’s in the art, the culture, the food, the very style of Paris. Paris means so much to the world in so many ways. Enjoy an adventure in France’s capital and savor the memories for years, but don’t think you’ve seen Paris because you took a picture of the Eiffel Tower.
Nikon D800 Nikkor 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 @ 32mm f/3.8 ISO 3200 1/60 sec