Monday, 28 January 2013

Magical Monday - Paris in purple

We live just by the Cimetière de Montmartre. I sometimes take the kids there, they enjoy wondering around the alley ways and entering a fantasy world of macarbre stories.

On one edge of the cemetery we can see our apartment building. Here it is, framed in purple.

Every Monday, Magical Monday, I post a photo that is hopefully puzzling, fantastical or unexpected.

More photos from the Magical Mondays series can be found here.

Monday, 21 January 2013

Magical Monday - The Eiffel Tower in the snow

Every Monday, Magical Monday, I post a photo that is hopefully puzzling, fantastical or unexpected.

More photos from the Magical Mondays series can be found here.

More Paris snow photos can be found here, here and here

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Paris in snowy monochrome

It's snowing! Paris is white, beautiful and very very quiet.

I went on a long detour to get the croissants this morning. It is often said that Montmartre is like a village. Today it really felt one. People were walking in the middle of the streets as they were less treacherous than the pavements. Occasionally a car passed, but it was moving so slowly you could barely hear it. I mainly heard the crump crump of my boots in the snow.

Oddly, The park up on Avenue Junot was open (usually all public playgrounds are closed as soon as it snows). St Denis was looking even more forlorn than usual.

Here is the Place de Tertre. It was hard to take a photo that didn't have a gazillion people taking a photo in it.

The artists were not doing a lot of painting.

I've always loved this 'atelier' on rue Orchampt.

The flowers in the window boxes are valiantly struggling to survive against all odds.

Coming down these stairs was quite treacherous. Looking up them was quite magical.

The snow covered domes of the Sacré Coeur were camouflaged against the white sky.

Here is the Père Noël, this snowfall seems to be confusing him.

And here is a brave boatman rowing through the icy waters of Montmartre.

Saturday, 12 January 2013

Christmas-tree-ageddon in Paris

In the UK, taking your Christmas decorations down after the 6th of January brings bad luck, so they say. In the France they don't seem to have this superstition. Christmas decorations hang suspended across the streets of Paris as late as February and March. There is a small delicatessen near us where the Christmas decorations hanging across the shop front stay there 12 months a year. Hey, why take them down, when you just have to put them up again?

Through out the whole of January Christmas trees appear on the pavements of Paris. Strewn around lampposts.

By trees.

Tossed in gutters.

Here the tree has been dismembered.

Some body is making an effort here. It's IN a bin and everything.

Here the Christmas tree has been put in a biodegradable gold plastic bag. Apparently this is no longer what one should do, there are drop off points where you can take your Christmas trees all over Paris. They should not be left there in bags, and even less so dumped in the street.

Here the road cleaning heros of Paris are taking away a truck load of badly diposed of Christmas trees.

And here somebody is simply having a wee joke.

I spotted the below tree after writing the above post. That's no mean achievement to get that tree up there. I shall be keeping an eye on it to see how long it stays there. Watch this space!

Apparently in 2011, 29 000 trees were collected from official disposal points in Paris and in 2012 this figure had gone up to 37 000. People are learning. The hope is that in 2013 the figure will be greater still.

For information of where to drop off your Christmas trees in Paris here are two links with all the details:
Où amener son sapin? (Mairie de Paris).
We have a fake Christmas tree of sorts that is has now been used 8 times. I think we'll carry on with it for a few more years.

Sunday, 6 January 2013

Floods in Christchurch Meadows

For most of our time in the UK this Christmas it rained. And rained. On New Year's Day, however, the sun came out. We were in Oxford and the sky was this stunning blue. 

We gathered together welly-boots for everybody and headed to Christchurch meadows where we knew there were some floods. The water you see below is not a lake, or a river. It's flood water. 

We were a little mystified as to where all the sea gulls came from.

This path was apparently covered over a few days earlier. The bright winter light enhanced the colours.

There were lots of gorgeous reflections.

This boat had pulled up ashore and the owners, after having a picnic on the bench, took a stroll around the meadows.

We preferred to have our 'picnic' back at the house, with some homemade macarons.