Monday, May 21, 2018

Postcard from Paris

We're happily settled in our familiar hotel in Paris (such a warm welcome -- the front desk clerk came out to give me a big hug! -- made us up a tisane and then asked if I'd like a boulloire in our room. Do you think she's been reading the blog?! ;-)

The boulloire (kettle) arrived on a tray, with a théière (teapot), two cups and saucers -- tea-stained when I snapped this photo for you because we'd just drained them dry -- and an assortment of teabags. . . 

I'd love to write more, but today was a 17.5 kilometre day, and I'm knackered!! We had a 1 o'clock lunch reservation in the 12th, and on the way squeezed in a jog through the Chagall, Lissitzky, and Malévitch exhibition at the Pompidou Centre.  Some gorgeous large Chagall paintings, which were thrilling to see, but also very cool was the chance to see some of his studies for the big works. . . .

After our lunch, we thought we'd enjoy a stroll along the Promenade Plantée and then across the Seine on the beautiful curves of the Passerelle Simone de Beauvoir. . . And if our hotel had been just on the other side of the bridge, we'd have been just fine.

But it was another 4.5 kilometres onward, and some crankiness may have ensued. . . .

We've had glorious weather so far, but this evening a thunderstorm and downpour have me worrying a bit about my packing. . . It's not cold, though, and I do have an umbrella, and there's plenty to do indoors here as well. . .  We'll see. . .

Almost bedtime, though (I'm still adjusting to the nine-hour time difference, and not yet sleeping more than 5 or 6 hours at night). But before I go, I'll just quickly share the two pages I've filled in my illustrated travel journal. I haven't bothered with paints in the journal the last year or so, relying on just pen and ink, but the watercolour classes of the past weeks have encouraged me to commit to filling my sketchbook this trip. So far, then. . . .

Both these sketches were begun plein air -- on location outdoors, that is -- but I finished them back in the hotel room. Both are of scenes viewed from the Promenade Plantée (the inspiration for New York City's High Line,  I believe).

That will have to do for now. I've also been posting a bit on Instagram, although truth be told, I'm trying to unplug a bit and soak up the city while I have the chance.
Wish you were here. . . .


  1. A lovely post card. I’m most impressed with your water colour sketches. Really beautiful. Something you will treasure in years to come. Lucky you with the kettle, which reminds me we must pack a travel kettle for our French/ Italian rail trip next month. B x

  2. What a lovely post, better than a postcard even, it captures the spirit of the start of an adventure. And your sketches are truly lovely, they capture a bit of magic.

  3. Treasure of memories you are creating. Love the watercolors. Mardel said it "they capture a bit of magic". And I'm learning a few facts from your notes. Very interesting. I would love to see the Chagall(s). Very nice to hear that you received a very warm welcome back from the hotel staff. Amelia

  4. lovely paintings -- very impressed! Look forward to seeing more of them.
    Ceri in London

  5. I remember a large Chagall exhibit and feeling as if I had fallen like Alice into some dreamscape. The exhibit hall was very dark, which added to the atmosphere--you saw nothing but the paintings, which are so magical.
    Your watercolors do capture the spirit even better than photos.

  6. I can't get enough of Paris, so I'm thoroughly enjoying your IG posts and this one. It's good, as you've said, to unplug for a bit. Beautiful sketches that just keep getting better and better.

  7. For some reason (which I could not explain) I had always imagined Chagall's paintings not to be very big. Small people, floating in the sky above tiny villages. So I was absolutely overwhelmed in the Albertina museum in Vienna when I suddenly found myself in front of an enormous picture of a bunch of flowers. It was the only exhibit on a huge wall, and it seemed to fill the entire room.

  8. Congratulations on packing and using your watercolors - a whole new way of seeing your travels!


  9. Beautiful! Watercolour painting in plein air? Madame,you must be une Parisienne!

  10. Love that you are keeping the journal and adding those wonderful watercolour images...a treasured keepsake in the making.
    I laughed when I saw the kettle!
    Enjoy could you not?
    Please post more Paris I can travel vicariously.


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