A morning walk, Paris

Traveller 996. I would say 2.10 or 2.20 ms tall? (Many feet.) Browsing at the bookboxes along the Seine. I like the green hair.

Come to think of it, I believe I only had “escargots” once during the stay. (Darn.) Vintage ad in a café.

Just a door knocker… Parisians are such snobs.

Mardouk, Medical school, Rue des Saint-pères. The construction of the school lasted twenty years from the 30’s to the 50’s. WWII kinda put a spanner in the works. The walls are decorated by sculptures of historical or mythological characters related or not to medicine. Mardouk or Merduk was the patron god of Babylon. Couldn’t find the name of the author(s?) of the medallions.

Penal court of Paris on the Ile de la Cité. (No, I never was subpoenaed to go inside).

The Pinta, Santa-María, and Niña, Colombus’ three ships. Salvador Dalí, 1958-59. Atelier des lumières. The actual painting is different, with only one ship, but those guys at Atelier des lumières are geniuses.

The new adventures of Panama Joe. Beer was good.

Saint-Merry church, near Beaubourg. Though built in the early 1500’s it still retains a Gothic style. The statues represent the apostles. The belfry houses the oldest bell in Paris, dated 1311. Yesterday. Didn’t get the bell’s name. (My sources are coming short)

Claude Renoir as a clown, by Renoir. Petit Palais. Renoir painted one of his sons, Claude (1901-1969) around 1910. Several of Renoir’s children became reknowned artists in their own fields. Claude became an assistant director and production manager. His brother Jean Renoir became one of the best French directors of the 30’s to 50’s.

Travellers 995 et al. Atelier des lumières. Where else? Salvador Dalí painting forming on the glass ceiling:

Pont des arts. An almost daily walk from our place. (On Rue des Saint-pères, left bank to the right). Now compare with the next picture, taken on the right-hand side of the Pont des arts:

Jean-Paul Sartre on the Pont des Arts, 1945. By Cartier-Bresson. During the war, Sartre and Beauvoir spent their days at the Café de Flore a few blocks away on the Boulevard Saint-Germain. The café had the enormous advantage in the winter of having central heating. A luxury since essential items such as coal were restricted. (Merci Zig-Zag Paris for the anecdote) Today the Café de Flore is a huge tourist trap.

Monet’s nympheas at the Orangerie. (Sans “punk” travellers). A gift to France by Monet on November 12, 1918. The day after the end of WWI.

Another doorknob? Come on!

“Les sanglots longs des violons de l’automne

“Bercent mon coeur d’une langueur monotone” (Verlaine again)

(The long weeping of Autumn’s violins

(Rocks my soul in a monotone languor.)

Those verses were the signal sent from London to the French Résistance on the eve on D-day, June ’44. Street art, Rue Jacob. Eisenhower and Churchill didn’t tell De Gaulle of the exact date until late in the day of the 6th. Hmmm.

Méditerranée (1895), by Maillol, who, apart from being an exceptional sculptor was a very good painter. Petit Palais.

Fancy a short walk up to Montmartre?

Salvador Dalí again at the Atelier des lumières.

In the jungle, the mighty jungle of Montmartre, the lion sleeps tonight…

I see a (blue) door and I want to paint it black. (Jagger/Richards). (Used those lines before. Need to renew yourself, Man). And a thought for Charlie Watts. We’ll miss his beat.

Street art by Konny. Konny Steding was born in Germany in 1963. Now lives in Paris, gracing the walls with her unique style.

Travellers 995 to 992. Street market on Place Maubert. The metro station there was my station of choice every morning for close to two years when I studied – or pretended to – in the Latin Quarter.

Noooo! Not another door knocker! I beg you.

“It was an itsy bitsy teenie weenie blue polka dot mini-skirt that she wore for the first time today.” Hmm. Yellow? Not blue? A bikini? Not a mini-skirt? Was I misinformed? (Traveller 991 Quai Voltaire, on her way to the Pont du carrousel.)

“Gotta get out of this place”. (“Now my girl you’re so young and pretty…”) Eric Burdon and the Animals. At the corner of Rue des Saint-pères and Boulevard Saint-Germain.

Captain and crew thank you once again for flying Equinoxio. Flight schedule should go back slowly to normal. A bientôt.

115 thoughts on “A morning walk, Paris

  1. Thank you for another wonderfully evocative Paris series Brian. Some are familiar scenes, others not but they all make me want to jump on the next flight out. Sigh…

    • Thank you. And yes, Burden was great. (Still sings, I understand?) A doorknob is called a “heurtoir” from the verb “heurter” to hit or strike. Come to think of it, the english verb “to hurt” may have come from “heurter” with the Normands. 😉

  2. Most excellent to be travelling with you again in the last two posts. I feel immediately more cultured and part of the world. I suffered through Simone’s “Prime of Life” and finished it too but it felt like a trap throughout. I mean, I know that the war was coming and that’s no fun as such, but damn was she a bore. Your snobbish knockers remind of those around here. No end of ideas for them. I was most glad to see the hat and beer photo. That’s the way to spell Paris.

  3. Marvellous, Brian,
    Love me some Dali.

    Short tale.
    The first time I stayed in France – student exchange, I was 13 – the family I resided with lived in a house on the outskirts of a small town called Labruguière on an acre stand that had ditches on three sides.
    The town is about 5knm from Castres.
    The first weekend there, I went out with my friend Patrick and his mum, torches in hand, to the ditches looking for snails!
    They make a hissing noise when dropped in boiling water, by the way.

    I haven’t eaten a snail in decades and now I’m vegetarian I wouldn’t.

    Did you know the mini skirt was named by Quant not because it was a tiny skirt but but after the car!

    Sad new about Charlie Watts. I was fortunate to have seen the Stones twice. The second time I took the kids!

    • Dalí was one of the first art books I ever bought. If I’d had a bit more money then, I would have bought a litho.
      I remember your student exchanges. The whole snail process is a bit disgusting. In Burgundy they put then 24h in a bucket to spill out their… “bave”.
      I didn’t know about that story on mini-skirts. Mini (Coopers) were expensive. Only one friend had one. We usually packed many inside.
      And yes, Watts is sad news. You went twice? Green with envy. I only saw them once when they came here to Mexico. Fab concert.
      Cheers Mate.

  4. Enjoyed the flight so much
    Love your humor with the doorknobs and song refs

    And steer art to soak up with your in the moment street shots.
    And the street shot of the lady with the phone in her waist of true white shorts? I often carry my phone like that 📱

  5. You know Paris better than me . However I know well the Quartier latin and the Boulevard St Germain . Not far from this boulevard I ate a couple of time at the restaurant “le Procope “, coming from the XVIIth century and where the French philosophers loved to be .
    I read your post with a great pleasure.
    In friendship

  6. I thought the last photo was a Banksy for a minute!
    Love the post which prompted many memories of music, times gone by, and thoughts about the irony of existentialists or nihilists sitting in a cafe centrally heated for hours while others froze.
    Looking forward to the next instalment of Panama Joe!

  7. If you only pretended to study, then it means you had capacity, wonderful, I pretended too and wandered off down town. So many references, Sartre, Dali, Burden, I hate tourist traps and stay right away, as a result have found some special places over the time, and I’m sure you have too. A wonderful way to begin my day.

    • Actually I never studied so hard in my entire life… French elitist system. And once you’re in, it’s a cruise… 😉 (But hush, don’t spread it)
      And precisely, early 70’s we never went once inside the Flore. Used to go to the Drugstore St-Germain, across the street.
      What are your special places if I may ask?
      And references? I’m a weird kinda Frog… 😉

      • I educated myself in women, snooker, surfing, food, beer, music and reading. The city of Fremantle was home to my wanderings. Cully’s Tea Room, Mills Record Bar, The P&O Hotel (pub), Fremantle Billiard Hall, Independent Cinema, Port Beach, the floorshow at the Odd Fellows pub … It was such fun. Weird is great!! 🙂

      • Had to look Freemantle up. My knowledge of Australian geography is scant at best…
        Compliments on your education. Made me recall the snooker room at the Parlklands club in Nairobi. Forbidden to children and women (!). I used to sneak in my BFF. Pretend we were 16. (14 really) Until a senior member kicked us out once, saying: “If you’re 16, which I doubt, then become junior members. Until then do.not.set.foot.here.”

  8. There’s always familiar air through the streets of Paris, which is never quite the same or quite another. Between a postcard panorama and the inhabitants’ reality, the eternal Paname, in perpetual motion, is constantly evolving, keeping the living traces of its history in its heart of stone.

    • Sadly it still is. And every year worse. The mayor’s priorities are not cleanliness. Some places are cleaner than others, others are full of litter. I just try to avoid them in the picture. 😉

  9. Those door knockers are so ornate. Do folks pause to see them, I wonder? And that man with a shock of green hair reminded me a villain from one of the Bond movies. He was that tall. Re: escargot? Do you enjoy them? I could never have them.

  10. More fabulous images that really bring Paris to life. The Salvador Dali paintings illuminated on the glass ceiling are fascinating. I’m familiar with Paul Verlaine’s poem, but I didn’t realise the significance of it until now. I love the idiosyncrasy of the door knockers. A smashing variety of subjects. Thank you. My favourite areas of Paris are Montmartre, particularly the gorgeous basilica of the, Sacre Coeur and the Place du Tertre with the artists. I could wander around there all day. I also loved the Left Bank, and spent some wonderful evenings there – good food, wine and fabulous music. Looking forward to your next series of photos.

    • The Atelier des lumières really do a superb job. Projecting everywhere: walls, floor, ceiling.
      Verlaine now? I’m not sure about the significance, but I’ve been wanting to illustrate it for a while. How come you know verlaine? (Or is it just that the nation most likely to learn french at school at the Brits?) (They already know English)
      More coming on Tuesday. Cheers.

      • I did study French in Grammar School many years ago. But I first heard of Paul Verlaine here on WordPress a few years back. A site I followed [but cant find now] posted the full poem in French and the English translation. I thought it was beautiful. I think I even reblogged it on an old site of mine.

      • Grammar school. I get my English and my American system all mixed up. Grammar school is secundary or high school? O levels or A levels? (If that still exists)
        And Verlaine, well… Equal to none but Rimbaud.
        Le ciel est par-dessus le toit…
        Si bleu, si calme,
        Un arbre par-dessus le toit,
        Berce sa palme.
        (One of the first poems I ever learnt, centuries ago. There was a palm tree in front of my window…)

      • Back then, it was either secondary school or grammar school, depending on whether you made the grades for the latter. [aged 11-16] The final exams then were GCE O Levels, but they don’t exist now, neither do grammar schools. I think they call them Comprehensive schools now.
        I haven’t heard of Rimbaud, but I’m going to look him up. Thank you.

      • Ha! So all those concepts I’d learnt went down the tube? Zut alors. I guess it’s like in France, since they can’t “fix” education, make it work, they just change the name. While I was at the Atelier des lumières, mesmerized by the Dalí show, one of the songs struck me: Pink Floyd’s “Wall”. “Teacher! Leave them kids alone”. “Just another brick in the wall.” I disagreed with those words when I first hear the song. But sadly, they were right. We are just brick in the wall.
        Oh. Rimbaud. You’re gonna love him. (He was Verlaine’s friend/lover) try “Le bateau ivre”:
        Just fab. The entire poem is written on a wall in Paris, behind Saint-Sulpice.

      • Yes, I like the song and those words have turned out to be so true.
        I’ve been looking up Rimbaud earlier today. I learned a lot about his background. Yes, I discovered he and Verlaine were lovers for two years. Apparently Verlaine tried to murder him, because he caught him packing to leave. Fortunately for Rimbaud, he was only wounded in the wrist, but Verlaine went to prison for 555 days for attempted murder! That was the end of that relationship! So my next research will be his actual poetry and I’ll start with your link. Thank you.

  11. I sheepishly must admit to loving the second door knocker. I’d happily put a smaller version next to my front door. Also love the “I’ve gotta get out of here” mural even though painting such a thing is close to the last thing I’d ever do. Thanks for the taste of Paris.

    • Hi Kamila. So nice to see you here. (I’ve bee a bit out of the blogosphere. Thanks for the visit. I will hop to your blog in a minute. (or a day? 😉) Hope all is well?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s