Category Archives: Tracing the Past

Tracing the past – La Norville

La Norville, Essone, Ile de France

One of the reasons I am wild about hiking in Europe is that I get  ecstatic everytime I stumble upon structures, architectural fragments or building ruins of  a bygone era.  Indeed getting up, close and personal to these vestiges of the past is definitely more fascinating than reading history books, although I also love doing the latter and I have built up a huge collection of books on European history bought mainly from Charity Shops in the UK (they sell as cheap as 50pence, mind you!) but the problem is, I can’t seem to finish even a chapter due to the many activities I do in life!!!   So what I do instead, with photographs taken on my walks,  I try comparing them with those of ancient postcards, research the story and voila… I am slowly creating my own history blog!

By the way, I shall be focusing more on this theme,  Tracing the Past,  in future posts as I do love history so much!  Don’t you?

Come and let’s browse on this pictures of  Norville, a village of 4,000 inhabitants situated 32 kms southeast of Paris.

After and Before:  Iron-grilled gate which used to protect the  Chateau de Norville (1662)…but the Chateau seems to have disappeared!


 After and Before:  The bollards protecting the (disappeared) Chateau are still standing!

This is a vestige of an old water pump which is given pride of place in someone else’s property.

Another ancient water pump that is now used as decor

Le Mairie or Town Hall, not that old but I am showing you this
as it is where you can find a cute litte ‘gargoyle’-like plumbing fixture on the side

Here is the gargoyle!  Wonder what era is it…

A charming stone house would show up once in a while

Or an antiquated archway entrance  that had been given a fresh look

Good thing about Norville is, even the residents have a sense of history.
This plant holder reminds me of the Roman-age sarcophagi on display at the Louvre or at the Vatican Museum.

 But sometimes, modern decors also give a touch of character to a building!  It creates a WELCOME-y atmosphere!


 We got lost in the back alleys and saw this garden of cabbages and brussel sprouts – a great winter provision!



And last but not least, this beautiful old plane tree who has witnessed the comings and goings and the many transformation of this village
– still proudly standing at the Town Hall park despite the signs of aging.