Paris, Paris…..

Today I am taking you to a virtual trip to Paris in the comfort of your cozy rooms. We were there today and at 6degC, it was freezing cold that our faces were as cold as ice cubes when we made our bisous-bisous with friends whom we met up with. It was also an expensive sightseeing trip for we kept sitting in cafes, eating light snacks in restaurants just for the purpose of warming up. All in all, we spent 100euros, trains fares included, oh well, It’s Paris and we just adore walking the streets of this beautiful city, looking at shop displays and artistic sights!

Our first stop: rue des Rosiers
(“street of Rose bushes” in English)

This is the Jewish quarter of Paris where Jewish boutiques, snack bars, restaurants and food shops are found.

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This is the tile facade of what used to be a historic deli,”Goldenberg”, closed several years ago and now taken over by a fashion boutique

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Hale, bagels… all Jewish bread

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A boulangerie selling Latkes or Jewish potato pancakes

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queueing up for falafel, a vegetarian snack of chickpea patties and fita bread….5euros if take away, 6euros if eaten in their restaurant

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This is the falafel, so good and so filling!

rue des Francs-Bourgeois
A trendy street of fashion boutiques and ancient hotels

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“Je ne suis pas inspiree”……(I am not inspired)

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door of an ancient hotel

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door of Hotel d’Almeras (1612)

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I wonder if these candles are scented?

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This book sells at 15euros

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The Rooster signifies fortune, luck, fidelity, protection as well as bossiness.

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A plate of oysters and a poster

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Vintage toy horse

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The Good and the Bad

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The flying shoes

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Foie Gras Royale

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Sepulcher maintenance, all cemeteries
I’ll take note of this

The Parisians

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Off for a smoke break

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on the Metro

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Homeless and patriotic. Wait, why the British flag….?

Flowers, Flowers….

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Flower shop in Blvd Haussmann

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This flowering plant looks so good to eat, it reminds me of the lettuce

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Daffodils infront of the Notre Dame Cathedral

Art for Art’s Sake

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The small picture at the bottom is supposed to be an apple

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If you are wondering what is that hole at the bottom, it’s actually the entrance to the basement

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The metallic trimmings of the main door of the Notre Dame Cathedral

More Photos:

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“Moving to a new accommodation? Our company can do the transporting of your household effects”..so says the ad on the mover van

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The saints of Notre Dame Cathedral

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Vide Grenier, February 2011

“Vide Grenier” in French literally translates to “Empty the Attic”. It is the same as “flea market” in English and is normally held on Sundays or public holidays. For many, it is one good reason for a Sunday out and to be amongst the crowd, for the others, it’s a way of finding collectables and basic items at bargain prices. Today, we went to our first Vide Grenier of the year, held in our local car park. We are lucky with the weather as it has been raining the past few days but it was freezing cold nevertheless.

We had a fun time looking at treasure-troves and some odd and outlandish items! 

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A vintage gas cooker, a collectable item!

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Vintage bar chair

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This copper vat is old.  It belongs to the grandmother of the seller.  It costs 150euros!  Great for cooking jams.

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One man’s garbage is another man’s treasure.

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This could be made into a wedding dress…”something old!”

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More Photoshoot with my Point-and-Shoot

After the photoshoot in Sermaise, I wanted to put my new P&S into more tests.

For Motion Photography, here are the shots taken from our moving car:

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The (now bare) tree-lined avenue of Le Val du Marais.  This road gets thick with foliage in the summer.

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This old manor house now the seat of our region’s Conseil General

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 Chateau du Marais
Le Val du Marais, Ile-de-France

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Everytime we drive around this roundabout, I can’t help but notice this perfection, thanks to the town gardeners who meticulously trim the grass, pluck off the weeds and change the flower display every turn of the season.

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A car barbecue? No, the wood is too long…..oh well, just pray that no traffic police is in sight

(Almost) Close-Up Photography 

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My mint plant is coming out! Hurray! Soon, we would be enjoying mint tea evenings, curry meals, mint and tomato salad to accompany a meal of grilled fish, etc..

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After the snowdrops, now the primroses!  I just love Spring!

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Didn’t feel like cooking lunch so we went for a sandwich formule at a bar-tabac. A Formule is a combination of a bite and a drink for a reasonable price. Here, we had ham and cheese sandwich accompanied by glass of beer, all at 5.70euros

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A miserable dog…

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…in his miserable sweater….in a miserable winter afternoon

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What are these? They are the diggings of MOLES!
These small mammals attack in the winter and early spring. They are the bane of farmers, gardeners and golf clubs because they ruin lawns and damage gardens.

Verdict on my P&S:  Very Good!

A Photoshoot in Sermaise

To test my brand new Point and Shoot camera (Olympus), we went driving in the countryside today for some photoshoot. Despite the grey skies and the light drizzle, I think this camera is not bad, considering that at 79euros, it did not really break the bank!

First stop: The village of Sermaise
30 km southeast of Paris, 10 km from Versailles

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Cross at the entrance of the village

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The village of Sermaise

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Church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary

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Side entrance to the church

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A guard dog. In 1855, the first tax on dogs was voted in Sermaise. One Franc for guard dogs and 5Francs for hunting dogs.

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A monument to the memory of the children of Sermaise who died for France

Little Chefs

I was practically wailing the other night.  My DSLR camera is not working and I just sent it today to Canon France (Paris) for repair. It might take them months before they can send it back to me. Meanwhile, I was looking at the cheapest cameras in Carrefour today, Canon Powershot (79euros) and Olympus T-100 (69euros). I know, they are only P&S cameras but at least, I can go on with my life..  I am miserable without my camera, been suffering withdrawal symptoms… I want a camera badly..SOS!

(Breaking News!)

We went to a nearby shopping centre today to finally buy the Point and Shoot camera we saw yesterday! Not really a high tech gadget, just a simple one to get my photographic juices flowing continuously while waiting for my SLR to get fixed. On the way to Carrefour, we saw a cooking workshop ongoing and it’s quite cute to watch kids getting so absorbed preparing their chocolate tarts out of Nutella.  This is the perfect moment to try my new P&S, I thought,  so here are the first shots!

 

 

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It’s the two-week winter holiday in France and school children have until the end of the month to take advantage of the free activities on offer like this cooking class offered by the centre management.