MEANDERING THROUGH PERE LACHAISE CEMETERY IN PARIS, FRANCE

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April, 29, 2014

A cemetery  is many things. It can be  a place of grief or of peacefulness.  A gentle and crowded reminder that none of us are going to get out of this world alive.  The Pere Lachaise Cemetary  was an interesting place to wander aimlessly on a beautiful Paris day during my recent visit.  There are numerous  notables buried among the 70,000 graves, such as Jim Morrison of The Doors, Frederic Chopin, Oscar Wilde, and  Sarah Bernhardt .  The cemetery, established in 1804 by Napoleon, was named after  the Jesuit priest, Pere Francois de la Chaise, who was the confessor for  King Louis  XIV.  Come meander with me a bit………

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Jim Morrison’s Final Resting Place

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Frederic  Chopin’s  Final Resting Place – his fans still bring him flowers…..

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Necropolitaine – city of the dead / cemetery

Le Memoire – the memory

 

 

 

 

 

 

POMPIDOU CENTER in PARIS, FRANCE

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April 22, 2014

Posting from home now.  All wonderful trips must come to an end and I’m now back to reality – not everyday can be  spent in Amsterdam or Paris.  But I do still have a lot to share…..such as the…

Pompidou Center !  A crazy looking place and how fun that can be!  It contains  the Modern Art Museum  ( Musee National  d’Art Moderne) and even if you  are not a fan, you should walk by  and check out the “exoskeletal” building. All the functional parts are on the outside, so they say.  I loved the fountains (free) that are adjacent to the building ” Homage to Stravinsky” .

Btw, Word Press seems to be cutting off some of my photos if you are viewing them on a large screen – please bare with me as I’m trying to find a solution. : )

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Back of the Pompidou Center, or is this the front?

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I’m pretty sure this is the front, but maybe it’s the back? ??

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Close ups of  my favorite pieces of the fountains.

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This church  and the building with the “shhh” mural sits right beside the Center.

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Gotta Love Paris!!!  Hope this made you smile.

Thanks for reading!

MORE WANDERING IN PARIS….

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April 17, 2014

More on my day of wandering in Paris….

I happened upon this huge St. Sulpice Church and snapped this shot just as a flock of birds took off.  You ask, why do I say the church is huge?  Look at the back – it literally took up the whole city block.:

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The “Love Locks Bridge” was another find.  Officially it is called  Pont des Arts Bridge.  Over the last few years a fad has been happening ( all over Europe) where couples attach a padlock with their names written or engraved onto  the railings or grates of the bridge  and then throw the key into the River Seine. There is some concern  about the metal pollution to the river from all of the keys and sometimes  police patrol the bridge to try and stop the keys from being pitched over the side,. Also, obviously, there is  concern about the added weight to the bridge from  all the locks, but  no word on a plan regarding that issue.  How Paris say no to love???? 

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This is a full shot of the  bridge and all of the “gold” color is padlocks, packed full, both sides, all the way down, layer upon layer, some locks locked on to other locks even. 

It’s a booming business for the padlock makers!!!!

Thanks for reading!

 

 

 

 

A DAY TO WANDER IN PARIS

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HOTEL  DEVILLE

April 16, 2014

It’s fun  to take a day and wander around, discover places and things you didn’t plan on and  to look for the beauty and humor that might have escaped you otherwise.  That’s what I did today and I found many nooks and crannies that made me smile.

Such as the photo above of the Hotel DeVille – that’s what the Parisians call their City Hall.  

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Paris has a healthy  crop of Gum Drop bushes.

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 Not quite sure what’s going on here……..but don’t think I’d want that job……

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Look at this Gasoline Station – can we call this the definition of “minimalist”?

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You gotta love it !  Oh how I can  expand on this!

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and last but not least….. a typical Paris sight.

Lot’s more to come…..

Thanks for reading……

 

 

 

 

 

VISITING NAPOLEON IN PARIS

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APRIL 15, 2014

Hello again from Paris!  Today I spent a major part of my day at the Museum Orsay  which was spectacular!  It is known for it’s large collection of Impressionism, Post Impressionism, Neo-Impressionism (and however far you’d like to follow that time line)  art pieces and I loved every moment.

But this posting is focused on Napoleon’s Tomb  which is very impressive.  With all there is to see in Paris, this destination might easily get bypassed but it should not. It’s   located  just a couple of blocks from my hotel or I might have skipped it myself.   As you look at my photos, just keep in mind, they could not begin to capture the enormous presence of  the Tomb and everything surrounding Napoleon’s Tomb.

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 Napoleon’s Tomb  is  directly under the dome in this building.

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The tip top of the building’s dome.

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Inside of the dome.

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Crypt door guards.

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There he  is.   By looking at the people, you can get an idea of just how large the tomb is and how tall the statues are.

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That’s an  over all photo of the whole layout.

What do you think? 

Thanks for reading!…… Until tomorrow and more sights of Paris……

 

BONJOUR FROM PARIS !

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April 14, 2014

April in Paris is  incredible!  The weather is lovely, people are friendly, and this city is hopping with energy.

Today we visited  Sainte-Chappell – a  13th  century chapel with oodles of stained glass  windows that sparkle on a sunny day. We had the sunny day but the chapel is also under  restoration so some of the windows were under cover.   What we could see were beautiful.

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Then  onward to the 700 year old  Notre Dame where we stood in a long line to  climb the some-odd 300 steps up to the façade between the two towers,  for not only  some breath-taking  views of the city, but also some close up views of the critters on top of the cathedral.

Let me give you some visuals….

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Is he sticking his tongue out at  the city of Paris?????

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These guys are laughing  at all those people in those looonnnnggggg lines to in get into this church.

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And look at this guy!  I guess if  I’d  been stuck up on the roof for 700 years, I would be so looney I’d  swinging a knife around also!   But enough of the scary stuff…….

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Close up of one of the three front doors of Notre Dame.

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Stay tuned…… more of Paris to come…….

Thanks for reading!

 

 

DAY TRIP FROM PARIS TO VERSAILLES CHATEAU

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April 13, 2014

Hello!   Chateau Versailles was the destination of  today. It’s an easy day trip from Paris via a regional  train ride and a 10 minute walk to the Chateau and well worth the time and expense.  Versailles was the home of France’s King Louis XIV , XV and XVI , until Louis XVI and his wife, Marie Antoinette were taken from the palace and beheaded.   It is  huge, plus there are 2 smaller palaces ( because the big one wasn’t enough),  the Queen’s Hamlet and the overall  gardens and fountains.  France, during this time period, makes for some very interesting  reading. But for now, here is just a brief  visual glimpse of how Versailles looks today.

The  photo above is only a small section of the front of Versailles.

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This is a close up of the top of the Chateau.

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Many of the ceilings were beautifully painted.

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This was Marie Antoinette’s bedroom and  the door on the left is where she run when the people came after her  during the Revolution.

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ONE of the fountains in the gardens.

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Called the Grand Canal, this area  sits beyond the gardens and fountains.

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There are also endless peaceful wooded paths to walk.

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The Queen’s Hamlet is tucked back in the woods.

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Lastly I think I should have this for my backyard birds – what a great bird bath it would make!

Thanks for reading and traveling  with me!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LAST DAY IN AMSTERDAM, TOMORROW: PARIS !!

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APRIL 12, 201

I love to look up and see the charming  architecture  and spires of Amsterdam against the blue sky.  I so enjoyed the city, the energetic people and the pancakes.  Did I tell you they have pancake restaurants on almost every corner?   The best  tasting and most unusual

pancakes I have ever seen.   I will have to come back again some time. Until then, here are some parting shots of this fun city.

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Westerkerk  steeple – the church where Rembrandt is buried.

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Dried flowers hanging from the ceiling at the flower market.

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On last canal shot…..

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Tulips  to bring home  that will last forever and never need watering.  Amsterdam thinks of everything.

A TRIP TO KEUKENHOFF TO SEE MILLIONS OF TULIPS !!!

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APRIL   12, 2014

Today was a trip to Keukenhoff,,  a 60 acre garden about an hour outside of Amsterdam , which is open only 2 months out of the year to the public  for a tulip  extravaganza!

It was WONDERFUL !!!    Beautiful, colorful flowers that smelled  soooo good were everywhere !!!  Just for pure enjoyment!!  We simply walked around enjoying the flower arrangement plantings, the authentic windmill and even a boat ride down the canals to see  the fields of tulips fields.  Hope you enjoy the photos!!

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This is a mosaic of  Amsterdam homes  that sits on a canal.

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Their pet cow who keep them supplied in cheese for the tourists.

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The ducks enjoy  attention and show off their tricks .

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And lastly, that’s me with my layers of clothes on to keep warm.  The weather has been perfect for doing lots of walking.

Hope you enjoyed my sampling of Keukenhoff !!  Thanks for reading!

 

 

DAY 2 in AMSTERDAM and the RIJKSMUSEUM

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Day 2 in Amsterdam and  my friend Judy and I were hit hard from the aftermath of  jet lag and slept in. When the  hotel maid finally  made us feel guilty enough for making her come back too many times than I care to admit,  we   ventured out  and headed for the Rijksmuseum. We went to the Van Gogh Museum yesterday  and, frankly, were a little disappointed.  But the Rijksmuseum was WONDERFUL!! If you go to Amsterdam and like art, do not miss this!  But  is also huge and would be difficult to see in an entire week, so, if possible, plan ahead of time what you must see.  There is something for everybody in the Rijksmuseum.  Art, furniture, fashion,  weapons, china, ship replicas, stain glass windows, ,,,the list goes on and on…   PLUS they let you take photos – always a plus!   (no photos allowed at the Van Gogh). Just a few of my favorites are  the 1737 Dutch pictorial  tiles (above) and……….Image

This beautiful floral  covered dish  with a  baby spilling flowers out onto the lid.  It was one of a set of 4.

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This massive yet  intricately carved  fireplace. 

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This collector’s cabinet  from 1730 held little bottles containing  medicinal ingredients……

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This ship replica  actually had moving working people  super- imposed onto the ship  to show a typical day onboard.

Kind of creepy, because they also looked sort of ghost like, but what a great idea!  How do they do it?????

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Plus hundreds of  beautiful  paintings, some familiar such as” Vermeer’s Milkmaid”  and  some maybe not so familiar.

The Rijksmuseum is fascinating!    I also want to mention we had dinner  at the  Small Talk Restaurant  where the staff is friendly and the Hungarian Goulash and Apple Streudel was great!   Btw, we  walked 7 miles today – that will give you an idea to the size of the museum because our hotel was almost next door to it.

Tomorrow we go to Keukenhoff to see the tulips!

Thanks for reading and traveling along with me!

 

 

 

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