Wednesday, October 31, 2012

France trip - Part III

I have a complaint about Paris. In many places in Europe, you can find a really nice coffee shop pretty early in the morning for a lovely breakfast. ,Last year in Barcelona, one street up from our hotel, my husband and I would go to Mauri  (a beautiful coffee shop from 1929) at 8am for wonderful coffee and I always had a sweet bun with pate de foie gras and a boiled egg (ok, I think I just lost some readers now, please bear with me, I eat funny…)
Now I thought I’d do the same in Paris, and dreamed of this Parisian coffee shop with wonderful crisp and buttery croissants. I headed out onto the streets on the first day with Sandy on my quest for such a place and it was like a ghost town! Everything was closed! So every day, I had my breakfast surrounded by couches with bed sheets on them. Oooompphhh! I was not a happy chappy! Parisian people, I will return – and next time I want my dream croissant in a nice setting waiting for me. Be warned.

On Monday, I headed alone to the Marais district. I had not been there in my previous visits to Paris, but it is certainly on my list for my next visit. I specifically wanted to visit the Place des Vosges, which is arguably the most beautiful square in Paris. It is the only one where you can step on the grass and it was filled with people enjoying the day, soaking some sun, people with babies and children, older people with their grandchildren playing ... Everyone taking it easy, enjoying the moment. And so did I.

The square is completely surrounded with beautiful arcades where you can find quaint boutiques, artisan ateliers, art galleries, trendy restaurants… Around the area there were brasseries, more shops, Jewish delicatessen full of food treasures.

After a few hours, I headed to the Père Lachaise cemetery.
You see, I had a special assignment: a picture of The Lizard King's (that's Jim Morrison for those born yesterday) grave to send to hubby. And here it is:
Very unassuming, hey? Can you believe they have maps for the cemetery, because there's so many people visiting to see the famous people's graves?
I like taking pictures of the lovely angel statues and others, and I'm planning on using some in my pieces. But maybe I won't tell anyone where I took them...

I think she looks so peaceful... 

 And I like the way it looks like he's watching over someone.

The following day we flew to Toulouse and then had another hour's drive to Durfort. Cathy was driving, I was navigating from the front seat, and Mary from the back. Cathy made a few French enemies navigating the roundabouts but we made it safe and sound and had a lovely trip through the beautiful French countryside.

We stopped in a neighboring village for lunch - we knew there would be nothing in Durfort - and had a wonderful meal and got to know each other better and bonded.

And we arrived in Durfort. La Cascade is a beautiful rustic house with stone walls and wooden shutters, quiet and romantic. The perfect setting for a lot of things - jewelry-making included, although I'm not sure the neighbors appreciated all the hammering we did...

The front of the house...

The back of the houses and the small patios were so inviting...

And every night I would be lulled to sleep by the sound of the cascade outside my room... Bliss...
I was so ready to start some jewelry-making the next day!

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