I got this picture in my e-mail basket today from Ian and Jo in Rivel. I just can't believe it. I am so impressed with their creativity. I don't think they knew my birthday in advance, so they must have had to act with incredible speed. After they read the blog and found out it was my birthday, they must have called Paris and arranged for the banner to be made up. My God, it's a big one and it must have cost beaucoup euros. Ian didn't say how he did this so I am making some guesses and presumptions at how they managed to pull this off. They must have driven up to Paris non-stop from Rivel and picked up the banner just before the banner manufacturing shop closed for the night, crammed it into the Volvo and raced over to the enduring symbol of France, l'tour de Eiffel. Then (I'm still making assumptions) Jo must have distracted the gendarmes while Ian somehow got that huge banner into the freight elevator. I'm sure it was nip and tuck getting the banner secured but knowing Ian and Jo they came prepared with winches, cables, ropes, carabiners, connectors and all the paraphernalia they would need to secure that banner to the Eiffel Tower. I suspect this took all night and they probably had to climb down the outer framework, no doubt in black suits or some kind of camouflage, to avoid the security personnel. All this in a stiff wind. Just look at how that big banner is flying in the breeze. That's got to be a thriller climbing around on the Eiffel Tower in a wind like that. I'm sure there were some tense moments when things didn't go exactly as planned. That's when you have to improvise. I can only guess at their fear, because I know Ian can hardly stand to be on a ladder, but they obviously overcame their paralysis. Then they had to get down on the ground, just as dawn was breaking, get in a boat on the Seine (I'm looking at the bridge in the lower left.) and take a picture. All without getting caught. Masterful. Either that or the photo is computer generated. In any case, I appreciate the effort, and yes, I did have a Bon Anniversaire. Thanks Ian and Jo.