In 2008 the band Coldplay released its famous hit Viva la Vida. Though it is disputed, many critics claim that much of its symbolism and lyrics deals with the French Revolution. The illustration of the album cover is the painting Liberty Leading the People which depicts a scene from France’s July Revolution. I’ve really liked the song and its cryptic lyrics. So it was interesting that we had the chance to visit where the beginning of the French Revolution began: Palace of Versailles. An angry French mob formed in Paris and marched their way to the Palace of Versailles to get rid of the monarchy. When the royal family (including Marie Antoinette) saw the vicious mob approaching they made a futile attempt to escape from the palace to flee to Austria. But from history we know that proved unsuccessful. The palace was a symbol of hierarchical extravagance and monarchical decadence for the revolutionists. It served as one of many reasons to dispose King Louis XVI.
On a hot Sunday afternoon we took a quick 1/2 hour bus ride outside Paris to the luxurious, extravagant, & lavish Palace of Versailles. The palace was the main center for French politics and was the living quarters of the French royal family from 1682 until the French Revolution in 1789. Today it serves as a museum. It is extremely extravagant: objects covered in gold, long corridors, spacious rooms, manicured gardens, artwork after artwork. It certainly let us travel back to a place of French royalty. The palace was amazing. It was so big we even got lost in it a few times. The place was mobbed though. As we waited in line to go to the next room a tourist slammed one of the 400 year old huge wooden doors against the wall-and the crowd went silent. Did someone just really do that? Some American tourist behind us snickered, “Let’s not break the 400 year old door-ya break it ya buy it.” Besides that it was quite an impressive sight. First the English Buckingham Palace, now the French Palace of Versailles, I guess you could say I’m almost royalty. Ironically what impressed me most was the garden. I am not really sure why it impressed me so much, maybe because it was something like out of a movie. It was bright green, well-kept, and adorned with statues from Roman/Greek mythology.
Ironically the Kardashian family was just at the palace just a day or two after we got there. Kim Kardashian and rapper Kanye West recently got married and had their rehearsal dinner at the Palace of Versailles just the night before. The entire family spent the week before the wedding in France. We saw multiple pictures of multiple members of the Kardashian family on Instagram in front of the Eiffel Tower, the Lourve, and other places. We thought we would have a brush up with the extravagant millionaire American family-only to find out they flew to Florence just a few short hours after we arrived. Maybe we’ll run into the supposed American “royal family” next time.