Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Paris Continuation of First Day

So, this is part three of the first day in Paris. It's like the day that never ends! These are mostly weird interesting things that I passed by. For example in front of Notre Dame is a little square with a sculpture of Charlemagne. I kept thinking my students would love to see it!

Although he was a "Frank", he spoke German, so I find it funny that the French love him so much!

He looks more like Attila the Hun to me, but it could just be the copper and the way it has aged and colored! I guess we older folk should be happy with what we get!

This building has the words Art, Morale and Science on it. It's probably some kind of institute, but how cool to live in a place like that!?

Whoever told me the French don't like Super heroes was wrong! Not only was this a huge comic book store with action figures and models and tons of comic books, but there were a lot of them around and they even have tv shows on Super heroes like the new X men film. These aren't my Father's French any more! (smile)!

I have to stop myself from taking pictures of every butcher shop, bakery and fish seller on  the street. I find them all intriguing, appealing and mesmerizing. This guy had seafood that was beautiful! And look at that fountain/water wall in his shop!

The school for girls - isn't it an attractive building!? (Probably it is something else now - it is near the Sorbonne, so it could be part of that complex, but I love the colorful brickwork - it is very lively compared to the drabber gray buildings of Paris.

Look at the paint left on this pillar from this early Gothic church I visited ! I believe it is St. Severin one of the older churches in Paris. It was dedicated to a hermit from the 6th century who would pray there. The original edifice was reputedly destroyed by Vikings and not rebuilt until the 13th century (hence the gothic elements.)

Here is a view of the interior. There are stained glass windows from many different periods in the church, but I don't really have any good pictures of them.

I think that is the Sorbonne. I popped by just to see where I would need to go on Thursday! Of course it turned out that this is the wrong Sorbonne (more on that later! ;-))

You sure wouldn't recognize the Parthenon while it is under construction!

There's a big sculpture of Sumo like Mongolian figure outside. That really had me confused. 

This railing is gorgeous (and looks lethal too!)

It couldn't be Paris without nuns. These sisters were sitting in the Jardin de Luxembourg listening to the music of an American swing band.(More on that later too!)

Et le voilà.

To me these statues are quintessential French garden. I'm not sure why the lion is so far away given there is good meat to be hunting near us here, but that is the way it is!

There are more than a hundred statues in the jardin de Luxembourg, including  20 sculptures of famous queens.

I was struck by the first one I saw because she seemed to be an alien with multi-antennae growing from her head.

As I looked at the next statues they too had these appendages and I finally figured out it must be to keep the pigeons away.

The garden was built by Henri IV's widow, Marie de Medici in 1630. This shot is from Wikipedia:

She bought the hotel de Luxembourg and turned it into a palace and added this nympheum to the back.

Of course I have forgotten which queens I decided to photograph, but here is another one.

This weird alien antenna kept showing up in my pictures (below).

I love this shot, because this is the "Permitted Lawn". It was so crammed with people trying to enjoy the sun that I can't see how they could really be enjoying themselves, but they were happily ignoring each other and basking.

Leaving the garden I saw this interesting tattoo. I guess it is true that mystery is far more compelling than knowing the secret.

I never got a good view of the whole image and so I am left wondering is that brown thing near the left bottom the trunk of a tree, an animal? The top is a tree with birds.  Whatever it was, it was intriguing.  (Of course I took this picture without permission and on the fly.)

From the garden of the Cluny museum. There were these weird "mecs" sitting in the arch - looking hung over and surly. I was almost afraid to go up and take the picture.

There is a little play park there right in front of the runs.

These gardens were lovely with roses and lupines and of course more people sitting out to enjoy the spring day.


And this may be one of my favorite picture of the trip. Here you see the broken arches near the garden.


And with that I conclude the tour of my first day in Paris. It was a full day and one not to be rivalled by any other on the trip.

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