The first time I went to the Eiffel Tower there was a sign on the elevator that said it was being repaired. But it wasn’t just that elevator; all the elevators were being repaired!
I was ten years old, we were living in Paris, and my older brother had decided to spend the day exploring the Eiffel Tower and I got to go along.
If you’ve stood underneath the Eiffel tower and looked up, you know the structure is massive and totally open.
“Let’s walk up,” my brother suggested.
I looked at the stairs, at the structure, and then at my brother. “All the way up?” I asked.
“Yes!” he responded.
Fear was starting to set in.
“Don’t worry, it’s safe, and if I can do it, you can too,” he assured me.
I was definitely not convinced, but we started walking toward the stairs.
As we climbed, it didn’t seem so scary—at least while we were still close to the ground. Once we got high enough to see the city, I felt I was climbing in the open air. The wire mesh that enclosed the stairwell seemed to disappear and the higher we went, the more exposed I felt. My stomach started doing somersaults. I must have looked a bit queasy because my brother told me to stop looking down and focus on where I was going.
My legs were so sore when we reached the top that it felt good to finally stop climbing. We walked around, taking in the views of the city of Paris.
When it was time to leave and the only way back down was again by using the stairs, my heart sank; secretly, I had hoped the elevators would be working again. We walked back to the stairs and my anxiety started to climb.
“It’s easier going down,” my brother assured me.
I don’t know about easier, but it was different and it did take time to adjust to going down.
At long last we got to the bottom and, despite the pain in my legs, I was ecstatic—not only because we were back on solid ground, but because I felt victorious!
To this day I say YES when I’m asked if I’ve been up the Eiffel Tower, and I tell the story, reveling in my triumph!
Would I do it again? Not a chance! If you're inclined, by all means, go for it. I promise the view It's a great story to tell your friends.
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