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Report - Paris Catacombs, 13th District 15/05/08

Discussion in 'European and International Sites' started by Rookinella, Jun 7, 2008.

  1. Rookinella

    Rookinella I should have danced all night
    28DL Full Member

    Jul 16, 2006
    Likes Received:
    Visited with Rug, SparkUK and OT.

    It was 5 o' clock in the evening and we had just said our goodbyes to the guys who were taking the Eurostar back on the Thursday. We'd done nearly 22 hours underground without any sleep (for some) but it was far from over because tonight Rug had something very special planned for those staying another night. After a quick meal and some Parisian street squatting, we dispersed to our various accomodation to have a quick change (no time for showers!) before we were back out the door and on our way to Gare du Nord to meet Rug. I was so tired by this time because I hadn't been to sleep for nearly 40 hours and I was seriously flagging. Using a helmet as a pillow and my legs (still sweating inside my waders) propped upside down against the wall of the station, I fell asleep by the roadside.


    It wasn't long before OT snoozed off and lay slumped against the station wall too, leaving SparkUK to stand guard as the unsavory characters of the night prowled around our camera equipment and sleeping bodies. I was awoken only when someone poked me to say Rug had arrived with a big map! He excitedly told us of the trip he had planned for this night ahead and said we wouldn't be finished by at least 9am:eek:

    As much as we wanted to see this, it was clear that it wasn't going to be. We were fully exhausted and another 12 hours of underground looked unlikely so after much deliberation, we finally decided on a few beers in the 13th District. Access was funny and something I will never forget- "sheer disbelief" on the looks of faces is probably best to describe it. We had to wait for a while for some police vans to move so we kicked back with a beer and chatted into the evening until the coast was clear.



    Down, down we go, down and deeper until we eventually reach the bottom and despite my tiredness, I'm raring to go. We have a choice of two bits we can see before we have to be back at the station to catch the last metro back to the hotel so we decide on the minerology office.


    There's a fair bit of walking and a crawl where "you have to turn your head sideways!" to get through but we got there in the end. I was so glad we chose this room because, not for the first time this trip, I was blown away. The markings on the walls, the cleanness of it was just incredible.

    Nord, couchant, midi, levant


    Evidence of hard work down there-superb stuff:thumb

    More beer and some smokes and we discuss all things Catta like carbide suppliers, cheese and new rooms. It's not long after this chat that OT manages to sneak rocks into Rug's bag (sorry Rug!:p) but it seems to be the challenge of the trip!


    It's getting late and we need to start moving fast if we are going to catch the last metro home so we do a quick detour to see this:


    They are the last photos I took underground because now I'm so knackered that I'm bouncing against the walls and falling asleep standing up so SparkUK takes my camera and tripod to stop me smashing it against the rocks (thaaaanks!:eek:) We are really running out of time now so we begin running the tunnels. I feel like Forrest Gump as I have Rug behind me shouting:

    "Runnnnnnn rookinella runnnn! You will miss your train!!"

    So we run. And it hurts. But we make it. With all the strength left in our arms, we put the cap back on top of a secret underground world that very few are privy to see.


    I am exhausted but fulfilled as we make it back to the metro, wobbling in time with the rhythm of the train like zombies. We bid farewell to SparkUK at his metro stop and exchange tired handshakes. It seems like a long walk back to the hotel with incoherent ramblings of skincare regimes, new and wonderful chocolate bars and how we can turn Box Quarry into "The Catacombs of Wiltshire" We get back into the hotel room where my body begins its final protest of what I have put it through and I have one of the biggest nosebleeds ever! It fills my hands, face and the lovely cream carpet. Light-headedness is an understatement right now as I finally flop onto the bed fully clothed, feet still in waders and drift into dead and deserved sleep.

    A big thanks to Rug for taking us down to District 13. We were too intimidated by your big map to go through another night of adventuring but we definately enjoyed ourselves. May you always hold the keys to your city:D:p
    #1 Rookinella, Jun 7, 2008
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2008

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