One more photo of my hometown (see yesterday’s post). We have a cathedral, Notre Dame, our Lady, which happens to be exactly 1000 years old. One of the side chapels, in the west wing.
As many of you know, I am not in BCN anymore. I am in Strasbourg, France, my hometown, this being for health reasons. All BCN photos are taken from a rather expansive archive, 6 years worth of photos, 110.000 of them.Many many more BCN posts to come!
This here is the area known as La Petite France.
And Weekend Reflections are right here.
Back to Paris… This is art. It is called Buren’s columns, after Daniel Buren, french conceptual artist who did this on commission of the french government in the inner courtyard of the Royal Palace. But les 2 plateaux was actually the original name of it when it was built, in 1986. I was living in Paris at that time, but I’m sorry to say that I never understood it. I remember well the intense discussion it provoked, over the integration of contemporary art and historic buildings. But hey, this was a car park before!
No, nothing to do with a rather average movie a few years back! This is better, this is Paris plage, Paris beach! Here is what it says on the municipal website:
A Seine-side holiday. That, in a nutshell, is what Paris Plages is all about – complete with sandy beaches, deckchairs, ubiquitous ice cream sellers, and concerts for French and foreign guests. Holidaymakers at the Bassin de la Villette (Paris 19) can also borrow books free of charge, play beach volley, take an aqua-gym class in a mini pool, or kayak around the lake – or, of course just chill and enjoy. The Seine’s banks become pedestrian and the beaches are spread across three spots (Louvre/Pont de Sully, Port de la Gare and Bassin de la Villette).
This was the first beach that opened in 2002. It spans three kilometres through historical Paris, and features open-air attractions (rollerblading, tai-chi, wall climbing, boules etc.). Refreshment areas, play areas and deckchairs are available for your time out unwinding by the river.
This is the latest addition to Paris Plages, and opened in 2007 round Bassin de la Villette (Paris 19). It stretches from Rotonde de Ledoux (nearest Jaurès Metro station) to the former Magasins Généraux (in Rue de Crimée) and features a proper water-sports complex (with rowing boats, kayaks, pedal boats and dinghies) alongside quaint quay-side restaurants and boules courts.
It all finishes next Sunday, so hurry up and go to Paris!!!
And back to Paris! Beaubourg, better known now by it’s official name of Centre Georges Pompidou (a former french president). It is a huge culture center/museum/library/exhibition center, with some cafes, situated in the Beaubourg area of the city center. Quite a lot to say about the place, you can click here and here for more info.
Hmmm…..OK, let’s do it, it is so hot
Leaving Paris, we are now in the city of Strasbourg, north east of France, at the german border. My hometown.
This is la petite France, the area known as little France, with a gruesome history to its name. There was a hospice in the area, called l’hospice des veroles, built during the 15th century, specially for people suffering of syphilis (most of them prostitutes). Syphilis was better known as the french disease, as it was brought by french soldiers. Therefore the name of the area…
Nowadays, it is the center of the old town, with a lot of very pretty houses, most of them over 500 years old, crossed by the river Ill. No hospice anymore, just lots of good restaurants. And tourists.
Have a look here to see many more weekend reflections.
One of the nicer places in Paris to have ‘un p’tit noir’, an expresso, the Nemours. In front of the Royal Palace, and facing the Louvre.
Let us stay in Paris a little longer. Paris has one of the world’s oldest metro network. And the entrances of most metro stations are in a lovely art deco style. But not this one! This one is right royal, it even wears a crown! Normal, it is the Palais Royal station, the royal palace.
Thanks to my friend VP, from Livorno in Italia, I can tell you now, hours after posting this, that it is called the Kiosque des noctambules, by Jean-Michel Othoniel. It was created in 2000, and is made of aluminium spheres and Murano glass. The Murano glass comes from the famous Salviati workshop.
Early morning at the Louvre.
And talking about good heavens, I would like to thank the ever so mysterious Cieldequimper, my good friend from Versailles Daily Photo, for 2 very nice hours! We’ll have to do it again. Somewhere…
Well, the theme day for march was cafe chairs. Here is my last photo about this, an early morning in the south of France, not too far from here. And a very happy Easter to everybody!
The theme for April 1st is pedestrian crossing.
This month’s theme day was about cafe chairs. And it’s a real joy for me, as I have some many many photos on this subject.
So, here we are in Strasbourg, Alsace, northeastern part of France. My hometown.
… in Northern Catalunya.
I spent the week in France, for urgent family reasons, and came back today by train, through the Center of the Universe. Yes, the Center of the Universe has a train station!
Following a visit in 1963, the Catalan surrealist artist Salvador Dalí declared the city’s railway station the centre of the Universe, saying that he always got his best ideas sitting in the waiting room. He followed that up some years later by declaring that the Iberian Peninsula rotated precisely at Perpignan station 132 million years ago – an event the artist invoked in his 1983 painting Topological Abduction of Europe – Homage to René Thom. Above the station is a monument in Dali’s honour, and across the surface of one of the main platforms is painted, in big letters, «perpignan centre du monde» (French for “perpignan centre of the world“). Or in Catalan, Perpinya, centre del Mon.
Yes, it is in France, but still in Catalunya.
Me??? I wouldn’t dare!!!
Some very colorful paints in this artist’s shop! All in all, should you think about some southern french/northern Catalan holidays, Argeles has it all: 7 km beaches, a lot of activities, hundreds of restaurants, a lovely old village, an English book galore, food to die for…
Here is a panoramic view of the seafront.
Our world on Tuesday, right here.
France has several national sports, among them: football (aka soccer), rugby (mostly in the south), the Tour de France (not cycling, just the Tour de France), and petanque, or boule. Yesterday, some important business was going on in front of the Argeles city hall: no less than a championship! Important business, no joking matter!
Not enough windows where you live? No problem: paint your own. It might lead to something nice!
Greetings from the lovely french seaside resort of Argeles-sur-Mer, in Catalan Argelers de la Merenda. It is France, but it also still is Catalunya, or Catalogne in French. I like to call the french part of it Northern Catalunya, or Roussillon (in Catalan Rossello) The people here, some of them anyway, speak a very close cousin to our Catalan south of the border.
Confused? Click here!
We’re here to celebrate France’s 14 juillet, or Bastille Day, with fireworks and dancing, yeah!