paris: a moveable feast

"If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast." 

- E. Hemingway

There are so many fabulous things about Paris, I wanted to share more of my memories from our last visit, so this is mostly going to be photos...

looking at ile de la cité (where you find notre dame & ste. chapelle)

looking at ile de la cité (where you find notre dame & ste. chapelle)

the louvre - the building was originally a palace

the louvre - the building was originally a palace

 

La Musée de l'Orangerie was amazing - and it's small enough to see & enjoy the collection in about an hour.  The museum features modern art from Cézanne, Renoir, Picasso, Matisse and others.  Of course, the showpiece of the museum is Monet's "Nymphéas" - two large oval shaped rooms, each with 4 enormous canvases wrapping the walls with visions of Monet's gardens in Giverny and the lovely tranquil waterlilies and willow trees.  It was incredibly peaceful and relaxing to sit and admire the paintings - I almost felt as if I was in the garden, living life as if painted by Monet.  Sadly I don't have any photos from those rooms (they were the only places you couldn't take photos in the museum).  The museum website has a 360-tour here.

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admiring some monet

admiring some monet

Lunch at Chartier.  I've been there twice before - here & here.  It was still fun this time and the food is good.  I had salad frisee with lardons (bacon) and a roasted quarter chicken with frites. 

notre dame by night

notre dame by night

Shakespeare & Company bookstore - I came out loaded down with new & vintage books

Shakespeare & Company bookstore - I came out loaded down with new & vintage books

We found the Luxemborg Gardens by accident, but it turned out to be a wonderful find.  The gardens were beautiful - the sculpted flower beds were filled with a jumble of yellow flowers (I loved it so much I might try to do this in my own yard).  There was a large round basin just in front of the Palace where children were sailing little boats.  I'm a big kid, so we probably should have rented one too - I think it was only 2 euro for 30 minutes.  There was also an orchestra playing under the trees nearby and lovely happy music floated down to us as we enjoyed the sun & the sights.  It was so lovely to spend time in the garden, I would completely recommend a visit there if you're in Paris.

Lunch at a little brasserie in St. Germain (sorry, I didn't catch the name).  The 3-course menu was only 12 euro.  Cheesy french onion soup, mussels and beef bourguignon.

 

Just before we headed to the train station to head back to Amsterdam, Trev and I set out on a random walk on the Right Bank.  Just in case you're planning a visit to Paris, it's worth noting that pretty much all stores are closed on Sunday - even in busy shopping areas, so it's best to plan accordingly (ie, don't leave all your shopping until Sunday).  Anyhow, as we were walking we stumbled upon l'Opéra Garnier.  The building was comissioned by Napoleon III and construction was completed in 1875.  The interior is richly decorated in marble & gold - it's not hard to close your eyes and imagine fashionable Parisians of the early 1900's swishing up the grand staircase in silk ballgowns... The opera & ballet take a break over the summer, but it would be fabulous to see a performance there if ever I get the chance!

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Well, there you have it...Paris, the moveable feast.  There are just so many wonderful things to see and do in Paris and if you haven't been, it's hard to convey a sense of the city, even with photos.  They just don't capture the atmosphere and ambiance that has me completely smitten, but I hope you've enjoyed scrolling through as much as I enjoyed picking out which photos to share.