France | Paris | Place de la Bastille | Fall colors from Port de l'Arsenal
October 28, 2015
Dear Family and Friends, Beautiful fall in Paris. The weather has been lots drier than the UK was this summer. We had a week of colder weather with highs in upper 40's then it went back to 60's with a high of 70 yesterday. That said...it's raining today so we are off to get much needed haircuts:-)
Our time here is flying by... We joined Musee d'Orsay and l'Orangerie for the year which we have visited a few times enjoying especially the 5th floor focusing on Impressionism. We sure like not having to wait in any lines and spending an hour or so each visit. Our last visit to the Lourvre we focused on the Napoleon apartments which were quite interesting. Our other big find was Classical concerts free or relatively inexpensive around the city. We've been to two excellent afternoon concerts at the Louvre auditorium and some free concerts at some nearby churches.
France | Paris | Eglise Marie-Madeleine| Faure Requiem
We heard the Faure Requiem song by a Dutch group with Parisian soloists at Eglise Marie-Madeleine. Al and I sang this when we were in college so it was fun to hear another group sing it. We just look online and can find all sorts to choose from each week.
We've gone to a couple of Thursday "French Classes" in the marina meeting room. Actually the rule is no English and bring wine. Well Al and I really get into the wine bit but French only makes for very little conversation by us or understanding what is being said. Reading French is a bit easier as we can look at it for awhile and figure it out. If I pick up a few key words I can sometimes get the gist of what is being said. But hearing French spoken quickly and not have a general idea of what is being talked about loses me totally.
We had our first medical experience...flu shots. We like to get a flu shot early because of traveling and not wanting to bring sickness when we visit our kids. So we went to the pharmacy and discovered that we should buy our flu shot for 6.50 Euro each and then take it to a doctor to administer it. Fortunately Charlotte our "French teacher" took us under her wing and away we went to her doctor's house/office. He would have come down to the boat but we said no we'll come to him. She introduced us, we got our shot, he refused payment and off we went.
France | Paris |Notre Dame |Carin, Al, Lars and Boris (dog)
France | Paris | Jardin Tuileries
October 18, 2015
We had sailing friends visit for a few days from Sweden. Lars, Carin and Boris (10 month puppy) came to Paris in their camper. We helped them get settled at Bois de Boulange campgrounds which is near the end of our Metro line. Boris is very well behaved and seemed to enjoy all the attention he would get from the locals. It seemed everyone who passed us buy needed to pat him on the head. Al teased Lars that he should start charging 2 Euro to pet Boris. (Funny story...on their way back to Sweden, Lars and Boris were waiting for Carin in a train station. Lars set his hat on the floor by Boris and a lady went by and stopped to pet Boris (he thought)but instead she tossed 2 Euro into his hat!)
France | Paris | Montmartre | Sacre Coeur| Mn friends Mark and Connie
We also had visitors from Minnesota passing through Paris on their way to Dubai. We had a fun day showing Mark and Connie some of the sights, speaking English again, and sharing a few meals. It's probably not funny but Al and I caught ourselves tripping over each other's conversations while we eagerly expressed ourselves in a language we could not only speak but understand.
France | Vincennes | Chateau Vincennes
October 27, 2015
We had another beautiful Fall day reaching 70F so we packed and picnic and hopped on the metro to enjoy another park we've been meaning to visit. We first toured Chateau Vincennes and Saint Chapelle Vincennce. It was built as a Hunting Manor in 12th century, a fortified royal residence in 16-17th centuries and then a military stronghold in the days of the Empire.