Yesterday was a long day, we awoke early...if you can call ten o'clock early...and it was a long day as we finally turned out the lights about one o'clock last night. But a fun day! As you can see by the dates I'm posting the day after for the most part.
It was Sunday morning and the streets below our windows were quiet as we enjoyed a late breakfast and our computers. I'm having trouble putting my book down...I've several on my Tablet through the services of Kindle..."Paris...The Novel" by Edward Rutherfurd is the one that I've been reading since before we left home. The book covers the history of Paris from 1261 to 1940 in the form of a novel about inter-related families. Assuming that the facts are correct and they seem to be; it is a fascinating history of the city we are enjoying. I'm nearly three quarters finished and I find that I'm reading later and later each night. Jim is enjoying a book that he brought from home; "A Paris Christmas...Immoveable Feast" by John Baxter. This again is very appropriate for our month in Paris during the season.
The conductor flips a release but it takes a real person to actually open these doors.
We continued our journey out to the edge of Paris and the Perpherique, that large freeway-like road that totally encloses the city of Paris. We arrived at Porte Doree and walked over the Perpherique into the huge park known as "the lungs of Paris" or more formally as Paris - Bois de Vincennes. We only touched the western part of the park today, but still walked about two miles around a long lake. Along the way we saw children riding on ponies, rowboats stacked for the winter, a sign to beware of thin ice...not today as it's a beautiful day full of sunshine and brisk air. There was mistletoe in the tree tops, swans on the lake, two islands in the center that had only one way in and out...so we stayed on the outer edge as we enjoyed strolling with the Parisians on a Sunday afternoon. Near the end of the lake we watched a young man with a miniture radio controlled speed boat entertain everyone with his high speeds that frightened the birds off the water but only caused the gracious swans to turn their heads with distain at the distraction of the people who were feeding them.
Back to the Metro Station, we figured we walked at least three miles, across the Peripherique, and back into Paris. We decided to leave the train at the d'Austerlitz Station and walk to where we could catch the Batobus for a ride on the Seine River. We were headed down the steps and when I reached the bottom...I'd been busy putting on my hat and gloves...I looked around...no Jim! I walked back up the stairs...still no Jim. I got out my cell phone and called him; thank goodness we each have a phone for moments like this. Turns out he was in front of me and had exited the station when he realized I was not with him. So thankful at times like this that we had the good sense to get these little cell phones!
The city is full of French people and tourists who've come to enjoy the "Time Square" of Paris on New Years Eve: Avenue des Champs Elysees. At the next stop there were twice as many people standing in line as the boat could hold. We decided to depart at the stop for the Louvre and walk home along the Quai to the Pont Beau Arts where we crossed the river to the left bank and were soon tucked into our little apartment. It was five o'clock and time for a light supper and some time to read books for awhile.
At 7:15 pm we dressed warmly and headed out the door to our evening as "paying" guests of the American Expat Jim Haynes. Every Sunday evening he holds open house for a group of people numbering from fifty to seventy-five or more in the summer when the party can flow into the patio from the small apartment/garret on the first floor. It is a word of mouth gathering that has been going on for years. He has written some books and has even had the New York Times write an article about his gatherings. There is an internet site and you have to have a reservation to attend. There is always a waiting list and the donation suggested is thirty euros per person.
I hope you've enjoyed our journey for the day and also the slideshow: