30 January 2009

Expos et promenades: Ma vie parisienne

Lately I’ve been doing a lot of what my friend Zoë so elegantly called “carping the diem.” And by that I mean leaving the comfort of my room, getting out there and doing interesting things in this lovely city. This week I’ve had a lot of “Oh yeah, I’m in PARIS” moments so here’s a brief rundown:
  • Watched François Truffaut’s Les 400 Coups and spotted 17th-arrondissement landmarks.
  • Explored the 20th and looked out on foggy Paris from Parc de Belleville, a vantage point 26 feet higher than Montmartre.
  • Navigated around the massive Père LaChaise cemetery taking in the sullen and tranquil ambiance and gawking at the graves of: Baron Haussmann, David, Vivant Denon, Jim Morrison (stereotypical, but I kind of had to), Honoré de Balzac, Eugene Delacroix, Molière, Guillaume Apollinaire, Marcel Proust, Oscar Wilde and Edith Piaf.
  • Took the bus – a lot – reading my collection of Anna Gavalda short stories all the while…oh how Parisian I have become.
  • Visited Paris la Belle, an exposition on poet, screenwriter, lyricist and artist Jacques Prévert in the Hôtel de Ville.
  • Browsed the Museum of modern art of the city of Paris.
  • Strolled around Passy.
  • Took advantage yet again of the soldes [sales] and spruced up my wardrobe more than was necessary – but when after someone asks me where I got such-and-such item I can haughtily respond “Paris,” it will all me worth it.
  • Toured Balzac’s House where he lived and worked for seven years in what was then the outskirts of Paris.
  • Benefitted from a fleeting sunny Parisian day by walking from my apartment across the Seine and past the Place de la Concorde to class in the 8th.
  • Perused an intriguing photography exhibit at the Jeu de Paume, entitled Un regard étranger. Paris / Les Américains.
  • Walked the length of the Tuilleries.
  • Visited the Palais Royal and peered through the multicolored glass panes which give a look through the construction barriers onto the restoration of Daniel Buren’s Les Deux Plateaux installation.
  • And I finished my sunny Friday afternoon reading peacefully in the Louvre.

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