Thursday, August 31, 2006

Paris Souvenir

Some Paris Souvenirs crack me up. This one, for instance, I could not resist photographing. On a bad taste scale from 0 to 10 I would give it a... 15. But, of course, this is only my opinion. I do hope I am not offending anyone who came here and invested 14,50 € in such a lovely Eiffel Tower French CanCan combo! PS: Wako, this one is dedicated to you ;-)

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Food Chain in the Luxembourg Gardens

So you thought the big chain food chain thing would only take place in the middle of the jungle between Lions and Antelopes? Wrong. It can also happen right in the middle of the urban jungle! I took this photo in the Luxembourg Gardens (6th arrondissement) just after this seagull spotted a poor goldfish in one of the ponds where kids generally play with their small sail boats. Quite unexpected, isn't it?

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Paris Cocktail

Every year it's the same. At the end of August, the social - and business - life takes a new start. Yesterday evening I then attended my first social event of "la rentrée" (back to school) at the musée Jaquemart André, where Samsung was launching a new range of cameras. They had the clever idea of giving a memory card to all the guests and lend them one of their new cameras for the evening so that we could all go home with our precious shots! This photo, for instance, was taken with their brand new NV3 (yes, it's free advertising!). Not bad eh?!

Monday, August 28, 2006

Feels good to approach Paris!

Of course I like going on vacation, lay in the sun, discover new cities like Istanbul... but I can't help it, after a certain time I miss Paris! I have to confess it, flying over the city a couple of hours ago felt great. I am also very glad to find you back here although I have not had the time to read all your comments yet. But I will... Right now I just feel like going to bed!

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Back home to the Eiffel Tower

If the plane did not crash, if I have not been sent to a Turkish prison, if I did not like it so much that I extended my stay... Today, is when I should be back from my vacation and reconnect with you all ;) Who knows, I may even be on time to watch the sun go down on the Eiffel Tower...

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Fast Food French Style

Move over McDonalds, Cojean’s in town! A new concept in fast food here in Paris, this restaurant boasts a healthy menu delivered fast. Fruit juices, vegetable juices, soups, salads, and sandwiches, and as you’ll see, no doubt yogurt as well. This particular photo was taken at the Group Danone’s HQs off boulevard Haussmann, where they have co-branded with Cojean to reconnect with the daily life of its consumers. Interestingly enough, Danone has also made another clever maneuver…according to the Financial Times and Danone’s president, Zinédine Zidane could soon become part of Danone’s Board of Directors.

Note: I am currently on vacation at the moment and I will be back on August 27. I can read your comments, but will not be able to reply until I return, thank you.

Friday, August 25, 2006

A Montmartre Restaurant

One place you must visit if you come to Paris is the infamous Place du Tertre. Known for its artists and romantic feel, the little village at the top of Montmartre attracts tourists and locals alike. After taking a stroll around the place, you then might want to drop into this little place called Aux Cadet de Gascogne located at number 4. I know there are many food lovers among you, so you can see their menu here if you want to pre-plan! FYI, la Gascogne is a beautiful region in the South West of France and Les cadets de Gascogne were famous soldiers under the reign of Louis the 13th.

Note: I am currently on vacation at the moment and I will be back on August 27. I can read your comments, but will not be able to reply until I return, thank you.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

The one and only Arch

Remember yesterday when I told you we had a fascination for arches of Triumph? Well here is another one, and probably the most famous monument of Paris after the Eiffel Tower: l'Arc de Triomphe de la place l'Etoile. Huge, superb, magnificent, glorious... Little quiz. From which avenue did I take this photo?

Note: I am currently on vacation at the moment and I will be back on August 27. I can read your comments, but will not be able to reply until I return, thank you.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel

If you think we like ferris wheels (see here), then you’ll see we also have a fascination with arches ! The Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel, was built by Napoléon Bonapartre just off the entrance to the Louvre (now museum) and the Tuileries garden between 1806 and 1808. As most arches since ancient Roman time were built to celebrate a victory or series of victories, this one celebrates the French army’s victory at Austerlitz.

Note: I am currently on vacation at the moment and I will be back on August 27. I can read your comments, but will not be able to reply until I return, thank you.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

What goes up, must come down

I never realised until I started taking photos for this blog that we are actually quite attached to ferris wheels, we Parisians. Unlike the one I showed you here, this one is assembled for the summer and sits on the rue de Rivoli, not far from le Louvre museum.

Note: I am currently on vacation at the moment and I will be back on August 27. I can read your comments, but will not be able to reply until I return, thank you.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Paris, the City of Light (Houses)?

I bet when you think of the city of Paris as the city of Lights, you don’t once think of coming across a Lighthouse (un phare)! Well sure enough, just off the rue Castagnary, you can find this beauty. Associated with a local fish market, this one towers over the street to let people know where to find their fish, but if you want to take a look at some real phares, here’s a link to the ones in France.

Note: I am currently on vacation at the moment and I will be back on August 27. I can read your comments, but will not be able to reply until I return, thank you.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Paris Liberation

If you have been to Paris you may have seen these plaques throughout the city. They are meant to commemorate the death of several Parisians who have been shot by the Nazi either during the war period or right at the liberation of Paris that occurred between August 17 and August 25, 1944. That is exactly what happened to this guy (Jean Pilot) who was shot near the Assemblée Nationale (Parliament) on August 20, 1944, exactly 62 years ago.

Note: I am currently on vacation at the moment and I will be back on August 27. I can read your comments, but will not be able to reply until I return, thank you.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Paris Plage last day

Everything comes to an end. Soon Parisians will be back and their cars too. The rat race (Métro boulot dodo in French!) will start again. It's the time I like the least in the year! The first sign of this is the end of Paris Plage which will be tomorrow. I did not spend much time there, but I took one of my all time favorite photos on PDP, so I guess I should be grateful! The good news is: there will be a Paris Plage next year for sure..

Note: I am currently on vacation at the moment and I will be back on August 27. I can read your comments, but will not be able to reply until I return, thank you.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Elvis Lives!

Ironically, not far from the Opéra, you can find one of the rowdiest American places in Paris. Located at 21, rue Daunou in the 2nd arrondissement, The American Dream Café boasts all kinds of shows and American food. I’ve never been inside, so I can’t tell you about the quality, but if you judge a restaurant by it’s cover, then take a look for yourself here. The video should give you a good idea of what to expect!

Note: I am currently on vacation at the moment and I will be back on August 27. I can read your comments, but will not be able to reply until I return, thank you.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Snake charmer

Today I am off to Turkey for 10 days. I will not check my mail nor connect to the Internet or this blog (which will of course continue while I am away) for 10 long days. It will be hard, but I'm sure I can manage (well, sort of!). I will miss you, but I will be happy to read your comments on my phone, but won't be able to answer until I come back. Well... IF I come back. Who knows, I may come across a dangerous snake and no snake charmer like this one that I photographed in Le jardin des Plantes!

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Come on, cheer up a little!

I don't know why, but some of the faces carved on the facades of some monuments (here, Le Grand Palais, near the Champs Elysées) really look ugly and wicked. This one looks even so upset and angry that I couldn't help but smiling while I was focusing on him to take the photo. He looks like he just ate or drank something terribly bitter!

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Académie Française

Under this dome 40 académiciens (members of the French Academy, also known as immortels (immortals)) spend most of their time discussing what proper French should be and completing a never ending dictionary... Lucky them! More (in French and in English).

Monday, August 14, 2006

The best way to discover Paris

You think driving a bicycle in Paris is like being sentenced to death? Wrong! First of all Parisian drive much more slowly than before. Second, there are now 314 kilometers of bicycle paths inside Paris and a lot of temporary operations to stop traffic on some streets (especially in the center) on Sundays and public holidays. Third, renting a bike is easy and you can even take part in a bike tour that a couple of associations organize throughout the year (more info here - in French, sorry). Update: here's more info in English. Merci Steverino!

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Other kind of fantasies

Enough sex for a while... Let's give our brain other reasons to fantasize: art! If you're looking for a cool modern art gallery to visit while you're in Paris, I highly recommend you go to Les Abesses (the area where the movie Le fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain was shot) and go to 44 rue Lepic where you will discover the world of Galeriew. In this picture you can see one of Betty Hanns' magnificent sculptures and some of Troy Henriksen's stunning paintings .

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Paris anti Aids campaign

Quite logically after yesterday's post (which triggered many more comments than the Maria Callas' post, God knows why!) I thought I would show you the 2006 Paris anti Aids campaign (Paris protège l'amour = Paris protects love). It looks like a quiet sunset on the Conciergerie, except that if you look more closely the moon is... a condom. Sorry the photo is not very good.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Still hot in Paris!

Paris, the city of love? Well, yes... So it seems! Things have changed since Doisneau's baiser de l'hôtel de ville!

Thursday, August 10, 2006

All you ever wanted to know about Paris Traffic Lights!

It's weird to see that despite the globalisation of the economy some things remain very local. Traffic lights (Feux rouges or Feux tricolores, in French) do belong to this category. First of all in Paris, they have this typical shape. Second, they are not located after the crossings like in the States but before. Third, they do not hang across the lanes but stand on the right sidewalk. In addition, they go directly from red to green unlike in other places where there is a transition to amber. Also, you are not allowed to turn right when it's red unless you see a little flashing amber arrow. Now the quiz part: when and where was the first automatic traffic light installed?

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Marias Callas' tomb

You all know the famous opera singer Maria Callas, right? Well today I was listening to one of her arias (La Mamma Morta from Andrea Chénier by Umberto Giordano) and I remembered I took a photo of her tomb in Le Père Lachaise Cemetery (well it's actually just a plaque, as her ashes were actually spread in the Aegean sea when she died) . You can also see the graffiti left by her admirers from around the world.

If you want to listen to La Mamma Morta, click on the little arrow :

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Shabby, not chic Café

There are enough "chic" cafés in Paris, but I liked the idea of showing a typical low-end café through one of their ceiling mirrors (probably used to watch the back of the place, in case somebody wants to order something). This place was so charmless it made it attractive in a certain way: ugly tiles, boring bar, "turkish" toilets (where you cannot sit!) and a perfectly inattentive waitress. No I won't give you the address, even if you insist, but let's just say it wasn't far from where you can find the fish with 3 eyes!

Monday, August 07, 2006

Flying Frenchman!

Who said men cannot fly? Some can and some do especially when they play with their skate board! It's not a typical Paris scene of course, but I thought it was a good way to start a very very quiet week: all Parisians are gone, the streets are clear, the weather is just fine and there are tourists all over the place. My favorite time of the year in Paris...

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Catch of of the day

I took this photo yesterday (Saturday) on the bank of the Port de Plaisance de l'Arsenal (Yacht Club), near Bastille. There, not only can you enjoy a nice walk, have lunch in the local restaurant or have a look at the boats; but apparently, also fish for your dinner according to Nicolas and Fabien. Quite honestly, I did not think this was possible and, frankly, considering the water pollution, I would not eat those fish!

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Mannequins delivery

I came across this truck delivering mannequins on the boulevard des Capucines (2nd arrondissement). I jumped off my motorbike, grabbed my camera and started shooting! The delivery guy was really amazed but I ended up talking to him and he was very friendly. The funny part is that I already photographed this exact same scene two days ago but due to a bad setting of my camera (remember it's not my usual one) I couldn't use the photos. Have a nice week-end everyone.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Crossed lines

Weird effect isn't? I took this photo last evening in the Tuileries Gardens (1st arrondissement) where, every summer, they install a small amusement park. They have a Ferris Wheel of course, but also this flying trapeze. I love the contrast between the straight Haussmann style buildings in the background and the cables holding the free hanging baskets in the foreground. As you can see the heat wave is history: now the sky is grey and it's a little chilly!

Thursday, August 03, 2006

No bill posters!

Using the public buildings to post bills and placards throughout the city (remember this photo?)is not a new phenomenon. Back in 1881, the French government had to pass a law against bill posters (actually to keep the official billboards from private posting) and had it painted on many walls throughout Paris. You can still see many of these "Défense d'afficher" (bill posters prohibited) signs on the walls and, the weirdest thing, is that they are still pretty well respected!

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

If it looks good, it tastes good!

I pass by the boulevard Raspail every day on my way home but I discovered this colourful eat in/take away place only recently. I had to stop and make a photo for PDP. If you're in the neighbourhood you might try it (the exact address is 79 Blvd Raspail, in the 6th arrondissement) but I have not tested the food. The risk is limited though; somebody who design her restaurant so nicely cannot be a bad cook! BTW, did you know that colour had an influence on your appetite? Read this.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Smile, you're on PDP!

Today is August 1st and it's a DP theme day... All those who participate in it (see list below) had to take a self portrait in their favorite location. To be quite honest I could not decide on what my favorite location in Paris was so I thought to cheat a little bit. Here is the deal, today is your turn! If you have a web cam on your computer, click on the "Take a new snap" bar on the left, right below the "about me section" and follow the instructions. By magic, your photo will appear on PDP right away... [now closed]

List of participants: Porto, Alexandria, Manila, Twincities, Newcastle, Trier, Greenville, London, Saarbruecken, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Copenhagen, Sydney, Chattanooga, Rotterdam, Albuquerque, Washington DC [Jenni], Washington DC [Passante], Sharon, Singapour, Oulou, Seattle, Bastia, Berlin, Szentes, Honolulu, Guadalajara, Trondheim, Hyde, Willemette.