February 2, 2009

A New Home

Sad to see her go but happy to see her blogging again, you can find Chris at her new home:

Best Trip Ever.

Looking forward to more adventures.

March 29, 2008

Beating my heart and soul home

It's wonderful to be home! There's nothing as wonderful as being welcomed home by happy cats!

Three weeks away from my garden this time of year meant there were lots of surprises for me this morning: dogwood, azaleas, camellias, forsythia, pansies, stocks, iris, forget-me-knots, geraniums, sea lavender, sweet breath of heaven, wisteria, candytuft, lemon, lime and orange blossoms and even the first of the roses. It's spring!

I read somewhere and adopted the idea that jet lag is caused by traveling so fast that your soul can't keep up, leaving you in that exhausted, fuzzy state for a few days until it rejoins you. I definitely beat my soul home.

This time I also beat my heart home. We had one frequent flyer ticket for this trip, so I flew home Delta and Frank was on Continental. When we parted at CDG, I suggested we race home. I won. His flight from Paris was delayed, so he missed his connection and had to spend the night in Houston. I've only just picked him up from the airport.

March 27, 2008

Day 21: Over so soon!

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It seems like we just arrived, but it also seems like we've been here for months. It turned out to be a completely different trip than I'd imagined it would be, but that should be no surprise since my imagination rarely makes an accurate forecast. I loved it, and I love Paris, way more than when I arrived!

In spite of all my whining about the weather, I wouldn't have missed this or changed a thing. The cold and the rain forced me to forget my long list of things to accomplish here and just savor one day at a time.

It left me lots of time for just walking and looking, my favorite all-time Paris activity, and standing at the window and looking, my new past-time. The changing look of Notre Dame in different light and at different times of day reminded me of Monet's paintings of the Rouen Cathedral. If only I could take photographs like he could paint!

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I was disappointed today to see that the world's homeliest dog, who belongs to the bookinistes just below our window, didn't come to "work" today. I've enjoyed watching him just about every day.

Now I have to pack. I didn't buy much while I was here, but it may be just enough to make it difficult.

Thanks, everyone, for reading all of this. I wish I could have made it more entertaining!

Au revoir!

March 26, 2008

Day 20 - Musée d'Orsay

When I was planning this trip, I made a mental list of the things that we’ve done more than once on other trips to Paris and therefore didn’t need to do this time.

The Musée d’Orsay was on that list, but as I thought about what to do with our last few days, I realized I really wanted to go again. After all, it is one of my favorite museums in the world so it would be foolish not to. And it’s a rainy day, although MUCH warmer than it has been.

So today, we did, along with about a zillion other people. We were among the very few who didn’t take flash photos of every recognizable painting while scurrying past all the rest with hardly a glance. How can they not see they're getting lousy photos with that flash reflection in the middle of each one, not to mention they're missing their chance to actually LOOK at the paintings? The worst was the big guy with the huge monkey puppet wrapped around his shoulders who found it hilarious to plant himself in front of all the paintings and have his children take flash photos of him with the paintings. Grrr.

Still, I love this museum. I just read Susan Vreeland’s Luncheon of the Boating Party, a pretty bad novel which nevertheless provides a good description of how Renoir worked on that painting, so I was itching to spend a little time looking at the Renoirs. (I think that particular painting is in Washington, D.C., not Paris, but there were a few others he painted at the same time I knew I could see.)

Then there’s that room of Cezannes that I always love best. Fortunately, no one thought it was worth photographing the Portrait of Gustave Geffroy that I wanted to spend my time on, so I had it pretty much to myself. The photo in this link isn’t good—the colors are all wrong, at least on line, and all the subtle colors are just lost--but it’s an amazing painting.

A very nice next-to-last day!

March 25, 2008

Day 18: Walking tour of Saint Germain des Prés

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I brought a book called “Paris Walks” by Sonia, Alison, and Rebecca Landes with me to Paris.

It describes seven walks, with lively historical anecdotes as background for many of the sites along the way. Walk #1 goes right past our front door, so we did that one in the first couple of days.

On Monday, since it was a holiday and most businesses were closed, we decided it would be a good day for the Saint Germain des Prés walk. We both re-read the description of the walk, and started at the Place Saint-Germain-des-Prés, a spot soaked in the history of Paris. We’d been there before, but this time, we really paid attention and looked carefully at the garden with its Picasso bust dedicated to Apollinaire, the church itself (the oldest in Paris), and the remaining traces of the original abbey in the block or so surrounding the building. The little garden to the side of the church is really lovely. I imagine it is even more so in the summer.

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Once we left the immediate area and started to follow the suggested walk down Rue Jacob and Rue Bonaparte, streets we’ve walked many times in the past, we soon gave up on following the book. First it was cold, and hard to manage turning the pages without removing my gloves, so I kept losing my place. Then there were the distractions, first a stop at Paul for coffee, then window shopping along the way. I never seem to get enough of looking at the gorgeous displays in Paris shop windows.

It made for a nice walk on a very cold day. When we finished, we stopped for a late lunch (great!) at Les Editeurs at Carrefours de Odeon, and made it home just before the rain started to pour down.

About Me

I live in Sacramento with my husband Frank and our cats Carlos and Lizzie. We've been making trips to Europe about once a year for the last ten years. Read more

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