Sunday, 9 June 2013

Le Retour

It's been a long time since I sharpened the end of my finger, licked it, and jotted down a few words.
I'm sorry about that.
Life, as everyone knows, sometimes takes over.

And now suddenly it's June. Blazing June even - at the moment, anyway.
I can only really believe it is June because it was my birthday on Friday. (As I'm going backwards these days, 'Bring 'em on!' is all I can say.)
But more exciting even than a backwards-birthday, is that we have just returned from Paris.

La Conciergerie

I love Paris.
I daresay that's a bit of a cliche, because who - in their right mind - doesn't?
I don't find the Parisians unbearable, or, generally, rude. The city never ceases to thrill me, and no matter how often we were to visit, I'd never get bored.
However, I did have to part with both my kidneys on this trip - Paris has become even more shockingly expensive than before. But on the plus side, life back home seems much cheaper by comparison. And in a country that never seems cheap, that's quite a bonus, even if it's short lived.

As for coming back to blazing sunshine - well, that's even more of a bonus.
Sitting in the courtyard with a glass of wine, I can almost trick myself into thinking I'm still on the Ile St Louis.
Or heading home across Le Petit Pont.
Well, if I close my eyes, that is.

Notre Dame from the garden of Julian le Pauvre

As we were walking down towards the Seine from the Opera a few days ago, I idly asked the In-Charge what 10 individual words he would pick to sum up our time in Paris.
I guess everyone plays these games.
Our favourite is when we visit an exhibition or gallery or museum, we both afterwards have to say which item/artwork we have walked out with under one arm.
Sometimes we have to allow ourselves two. (Each)

The Opera

My question in Paris wasn't that easy to answer, and we discussed it all the way down to the Pont des Arts. Inevitably, while we had some overlaps, we also came up with some different answers.

'€€€€€€€kkk !' was the In-Charge's immediate response, and - with the kidney-removal-scars still fairly raw - I had to agree; although my first thought was 'Pounds, Pounds, Pounds, Pounds, Pounds!'
(Why did no one remind me that the average person's visit to Paris will result in The Kilo-a-Day-Weight-Enhancement-Effect?)

So my standing on the Pont des Arts didn't help it any.
These days it is bowed down with padlocks, and one wonders how heavy they are en masse, and if or when the poor old bridge might sink beneath the grey-green-but-not-greasy waters of the Seine.

Pont des Arts looking towards Ile de la Cite

Apparently the Pont des Arts is where you place a padlock with your life partner (should you feel so inclined), but if the padlock is for your lover, then you should go to the Pont de l'Archevêché. 
Just a hint, if you're heading to Paris...
The padlocks were all removed in 2010 and although everyone blamed the City Council, it turned out they were taken by a student from the nearby École des Beaux-Arts to create a sculpture.
I feel the sculpture ought to be on public display on the Left Bank.
Perhaps it is, but we didn't see it.

Padlocks on the Pont des Arts

Anyway, we still haven't finalised our list, but I shall keep you posted.
Not today. 
While the sun is shining, I feel it behoves me to sit in the courtyard, close my eyes and have another sip of wine.
At least this glass won't cost my liver... (Ha ha)


  1. lovely.... thank you for pics o' Paris!

    1. Hi L - glad you liked them! I expect there'll be more to come. Nice to see you - hope you're keeping well.

  2. Great pics of Paris - I have been to France a few times but never to Paris. One day.....

    1. Yes, definitely put Paris on your list for your next visit to France (but start saving now!)

  3. Glad you enjoyed your trip, and have a very happy birthday, which ever way round you celebrate it.

    1. Thanks Isobel. Hope you are ok. I have been totally off-line for ages, so am not up to date, but I'm sure your days are up and down. Take care.

  4. Welcome back. Glad you've had a great time in Paris and belated birthday greetings.
    I love Paris too, everything about it, but especially the architecture and art, the elegance and style of the Parisians, and
    the bakeries.

    1. Thanks Mairead - how nice!
      Yes - have to agree with everything you say, even though the bakeries have contributed hugely to my downfall...

  5. Interesting the locks, love your pictures and a very Happy Birthday Wish to you!

    1. Thanks Pix. The locks are actually amazingly beautiful. They are new since our last visit.

  6. Oh my goodness, I love the photos!! We were hoping to go to Paris but had to go to Milan instead :( Would love to go to Paris, I love the bridge with the locks!


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