It just goes on and on and on. The opulence is a bit nauseating after a while, and the only part I actually liked was the outside. The gardens are beautiful and at least the area provides a home for wildlife.
The day we were at Versailles was close to 100 degrees Fahrenheit, one of the hottest days of the summer in Paris and much to our chagrin, (that's a French word for parched throats), there was no water for sale on the grounds of the palace. Turns out there was a selling bottles of water from a cooler outside the gates, much like at Reds and Bengals games, but we didn't see him before going inside and he was gone once we got done. So we decided to try to make a quick stop on the way back to Garches for some water.
After about ten or fifteen minutes of driving in the big blue MB diesel-powered station wagon (maybe I'll shorten that to MBDPSW the rest of the way), we spotted what looked like a supermarket to the right of the road. The parking lot was very small, only about twelve spots and not much room between the cars on both sides. I drove to the end of the lot searching for a spot, and couldn't find any. I noticed the white reverse lights come on on a car to our right, so I decided to put myself in position to grab that spot, but it was clear that the driver somehow didn't see the MBDPSW and was heading right for us! I put the MBDPSW in reverse and hit the gas, which turned out to be a short trip as I backed right into a mini-van with a fairly loud collision.
Sacre Bleu! I've managed to crash a car that I don't own in a country where I don't speak the language. Super! I got out of the car and was confronted by the driver of the mini-van, a fairly large man with shoulder-length kinky hair and two or three poodles, (probably of the French variety since we were in France), who were barking their little kinky-haired heads off. The driver started barking something at me in French, so we had quite the tableau unfolding: Three or four kinky-haired animals barking things at me which I didn't understand.
Fortunately the bumper of the MBDPSW and the bumper of the mini-van were at exactly the same height, so there was no damage to either vehicle. I know the phrase for "I'm sorry" in French is something like "Je suis desolee" but all I could come up with in this time of crisis was a string of French gibberish, something like "parle vous Inglais, au revoir, merci, croissant, foie gras" which i repeated over and over as I quickly got back in the car and on the road back to Garches. A major international incident narrowly avoided. That would be just the first of a few adventures in and around Paris in the MBDPSW.