The Paris Chronicles: Part one – Random Thoughts on a Random Walk

Paris!!! What more to say?  Unfortunately we had a stressful entrée into my favorite city on the planet, as there was a miscommunication with our landlord and we ended up stranded for several stressful hours until I was able to reach him to let us into the apartment. We also had to hassle with returning the car.

But then, finally, we were free. Hallelujah! And finally I could relax, and enjoy my town. And I did, and we did! We walked and walked and walked. I’ll post on our restaurant and other experiences and deep thoughts separately. This post is just a tour of our random wanderings all across and all around my favorite place. And lots of pictures (like this one from our apartment window.)

We had no agenda and no plans. We made our way over to the 5th for lunch one day,

and enjoyed a stroll up rue Moufftard, enjoying seeing the market bounty,

and reminiscing about previous strolls and experiences…

On our way back across the river we happened upon this church.

For some reason Jim decided to go in, so I followed. Wow, what a beautiful place!

What was the name of this church again? Hmmm. St. Genevieve. Who was/is this St. Genevieve? http://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=120

OMG, get out!! The Patron Saint of PARIS! Paris has a Saint? Why have I never known of this Saintly woman? You better believe I will be praying to her from now on. I ever saw some of her REMAINS! Jim saw this and said look, it’s St Genevieve’s finger.

And then we read that it is supposed to be one of her bones. The POPE had been there…

You never know what you’ll find wandering around Paris.  Swept away with my newfound religious fervor, I decided that St. Genevieve wants us to buy this abandoned house on Rue de la Montagne Sainte-Geneviève.

HER street, So please join me in celebrating her feast day, January 3. It will be a big par-tay. Let us pray.

Still feeling full of the Holy Spirit, we walked over to  Notre Dame. Some people need to see the Eiffel Tower to know they are in Paris. Me, I need to see the Flying buttresses and then I know I’m home.

And the bridges. The bridges make me sigh

Sigh

Sigh

Bridge of sighs

I love this song. It reminds me of standing on these bridges:

We did manage to fit in some culture in between our debauchery,  We spent a few solemn moments at the memorial to the deportees.  I had never known of its existence, right next to the Seine near Notre Dame. It was very moving.

We also went to a new to me museum called the Pinacotheque, where we saw a Van Gogh exhibit called Rêves de Japon. There were two exhibits, one of the Van Gogh paintings that were paired with the Japanese prints that inspired him, and one of the works by the Japanese artist Hiroshige This was particularly interesting to Jim, who recognized several of places in the Japanese prints.

There was a lot of explanatory material accompanying the exhibit, so my eyes and brain were too exhausted to accompany Jim to Hiroshige exhibit so we split up and I went to another kind of museum (shrine) Galeries Lafayette.

Now this is a department store.

We also spent a day at the Orsay, communing with the rest of the Impressionists and looking out over Paris.

Of course no trip to Paris would be complete for me without seeing the Tuilleries, my favorite garden (I don’t know why, it just is). I was filled with joy to see the flowers in bloom. So beautiful.

It must have been lunch time, because all of the of Eiffel Tower key chain sellers were on break. I was glad to see that they get a rest…

And what’s a trip to Paris without a view of the city from Sacre Coeur?

We were there at night, having gone to a restaurant that sits on the other side of the Butte.

All those Montmarte steps = calories burned. You need to have some motivation to climb that many steps.

These are just a few of the moments that made me happy. There were so many more.

What is it about Paris?  Others way more gifted than me have tried to capture the reason why it calls to so many of us. In some ways it’s easy to explain,, And in others, it will always remain a mystery,

Next, I try to unravel some mysteries…

10 thoughts on “The Paris Chronicles: Part one – Random Thoughts on a Random Walk

  1. Oh Dawn, I’ve been up since 4am, can’t sleep, worrying about the future, and I come across this post that made me sigh and smile, all at the same time! Your pictures make me feel like I’m right there (why, oh why, can’t I be, lottery Gods!). I too love the bridges, they ARE Paris to me. I have that song in my head now and your post will carry me through the day. I love the reflection of you and Jim in the restaurant window and those night shots of the Montmartre stairways. Love Van Gogh’s trees! Can we split on the place on rue de la montagne Ste Genevieve?
    Jo

  2. Yes Jo, St. G says we can be roomies in Paris.
    Thanks for your encouragement and support of my ramblings. If it’s any consolation, know that I was also very worried and nervous 4 years ago, when I made the scary decision to leave a boring but well-paying and pretty secure job to come to DC, not knowing how it would turn out (which it did in a great way). I am confident that you will emerge from your transition better and stronger and happier.
    Bonne Chance ma cherie!

  3. SE, I have not been to OPF in a while but did today. What a delight to find your blog! WE do love our City!!!!
    so glad you have discovered Sainte Genevieve! You can now go back to see Midnight in Paris and enjoy seeing that beautiful Church (only the outside,though).
    Merci, mon amie pour la plaisir de Paris!!!!
    Lilia

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