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Reflections on Paris

FRANCE | Monday, 26 November 2012 | Views [729]

On my arrival and first evening in Paris

Was suppose to get into Lyon Station at 9:30am, but the train was delayed 3 hours, which cut into my exploring a bit. Regardless, this city is amazing. After dropping of my bags at the hostel, nestled in a sidestreet right below Montmarte, I caught the subway to the Louvre. Walking around the plaza with the great glass period and enormous line of prospective museum goers, I was awed by the gradeur of design. Leaving behind the queue encircling the pyramid, I ambled into the Tuilleries Gardens and was pleased to find chairs strewn throughout allowing the population sit and soak in the beautiful atmosphere created by the fountains and landscaped greenspace.   I found myself in the far corner of the gardens, waiting in a much shorter line for the Musee de l'Orangerie, which beautifully displays Monet's "Waterlilles" and a lot of other beautiful pieces from cezanne, picasso, Renoir, and more. I discovered Soutine today and his skewed view of the world, which was so fresh to me, as I'm sure I've never seen his wonderful work before. Then walked the Champs Élysées up to the Arc de Triomphe. It's much larger than I realized and I climbed to the top for a glittering night view of the Paris skyline. The Eiffel tower towers above the rest of the night sky and dominates the eye. It drew my weary body to get a closer view and I was not disappointed, as the moment that I was standing in its immediate glow, it's sparkling lights came to life and dazzled my eyes and all of the city whether near or far. I can't believe I've never been here before and I am amazed that each city I visit seems to one-up the last.


Oct. 31st, 2012, 11:49am (Garden of Versailles)

This is a true gem of the world. The Gardens, which I have only begun to walk through are breathtaking. My heart is soaring being outside and closer to nature and I can't stop smiling. Even though the fountains aren't running and many sculptures are covered, the expanse of these grand gardens is overwhelming. This is at the top of my list for places to return, particularly during the Spring/Summer when the flowers, which clearly decorate a long part of this space, are in bloom. This is the greatest landscape design I have experienced and surely must be near the top in the world... 4:02: I've walked all over and even took a bit of a nap at the north field and eventually found my legs had carried me to Marie Antionette's Estate, specifically the Queen's Hamlet. All the buildings have been preserved and transport one's mind back to that time very easily. There's a wonderful farm, full with animals and a quaint olf farmhouse that appears to be in residence, and I'm sitting below the second floor balcony of Maison de la Reine. The whole space so perfectly captures the feel of the time and what must have been an escape from the gradoise palace and a return to a slower pace of life for the queen and family. This is a place that people just need to experience, as it's hard to put into words the variety of emotions that this space illicits.

Tags: paris, versailles


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