Monday, November 27

Rue de la Néva

Old fashioned elevator in a Parisian building. When I was younger (not that long ago!) most elevators in Paris were like this, now these have become much rarer, replaced with modern "normal" ones that are no doubt much safer - no risk of getting anything caught in between the 2 doors - but with much less charm...

Sunday, October 22

Place de Clichy

When is this station ever so empty? Sunday morning... Posted by Picasa

Thursday, October 19

Holiday lights

...have been strung up on the trees along the Champs Elysées. They don't get switched on until early December, I think, but they're up. Christmas is coming and the goose is getting fat...

Saturday, October 14

Saturday, September 30

Sunday, August 27

avenue d'Ivry

Durians for sale, lots of them, piled up on the sidewalk.

Sunday, August 20

Place des Etats Unis

This would be an appropriate post for the 4th of July, but I don't feel like waiting for next year.

Bassin de la Villette

Sunday, July 30


The Mitterand library and - more importantly ! - MK2 cinema complex.

... and underground, the entrance to metro line 14.


Love the Chinese style landscapes painted on the big concrete flowerpots.

Saturday, July 29

Friday, July 14

Parc de Sceaux

Not Paris, but close enough and easy to get to via RER. Lovely picnic there today - so few people, sunny and warm, but breezy. Large expanses of lawns, wooded areas, a big canal, fountains, ducks, a swan and two downy cygnets, good company, home made quiche, a ripe peach, juice dribbling down my chin and sunshine on my shoulders.

Saturday, May 20

Hôtel de Ville

A handful of CGT trade unionists were holding some sort of rally in the Hôtel de Ville this afternoon. And I do mean a handful - they looked quite lost in the middle of the wide esplanade. Cheerful bunch, too. They were playing music and handing out balloons.

Nearby avenue Victoria was filled was police trucks - most of the policemen were sitting in their vehicles looking bored. Perhaps they had been expecting to do battle with a huge angry mob. Or maybe they were supposed to be somewhere else. Who knows. One young cop sat on a bench in the sunlight, drinking a soda. Several small groups loitered around the square, eyeing pretty women as they walked past. Ocasionnally they were distracted by tourists wandering by, in groups or alone, holding up maps of the city, asking for directions. They seemed happy to help. No tear gas or burning cars in sight.

This is a type of scene I've witnessed so often over the years - it makes me sad when people feel obliged to ask, due to events in the past few months, whether Paris is safe for visitors.

Yes, it's safe. It's beautiful.

Thursday, May 11

Ile Saint Louis

on a beautiful spring evening.

Tuesday, May 2

avenue Montaigne

There is a herd of cows around the Rond Point des Champs Elysées at the moment, decorated by various artists. These 2 were on avenue Montaigne, in front of the Gucci store.

Saturday, April 8


photos courtesy of the Mairies d'Arrondissement websites, inspired by a trip to the Barbes market with only a camera phone and no way of getting any decent shots...

Thursday, March 16

Hôtel de Ville

Warm tones of sunlight on stone walls. One of my favorite things about Paris.

Friday, March 10

Champs Elysées Clémenceau metro station

This morning in the Metro station, there was an old man busking. He was playing the violin. He wasn’t playing from memory, nor did he have a stand with sheet music in front of him, a woman (his wife?) was standing near him, holding the sheet music up to his eyes, turning the pages as he played.

Who are they ? Is this a hobby, something a retired musician does to pass the time, or do they live off the coins thrown in the violin case by commuters in a hurry ? What was the woman thinking as the crowd swirled around them, was she content to be there, standing by her man, watching him, listening to him ? Did she wish she could get on one of the passing trains and go somewhere, anywhere else and do something different with her morning ? Her face gave nothing away.

Quai d'Orleans

Friday, March 3

Hôtel de Ville

We're spoiled with not one but two interesting photo exhibitions at the Hôtel de Ville, no entrance fee (merci Bertrand!)

Willy Ronis à Paris, Monday through Saturday 10 to 7, except bank holidays, until May 27th.

Paris au cinéma, same days and times, until June 30th.

Sunday, January 15

Saint Germain des Près

This is the church at Saint Germain. And across the street, a Dior boutique.

Avenue de Clichy

Image hosted by

My favorite tree.  It's in a little garden just off avenue de Clichy.  It's tiny, but there is grass and a playground.  And this tree.  I find it very graceful. 

Saturday, January 14

Rue de Rivoli

This is a very long street, and it has several personalities. One section is rather posh, with fancy old hotels and tea rooms opposite the Tuileries. Another is full of tacky souvenir shops.

And yet another is Paris' answer to the ubiquitous English High Street, teaming with shoppers on their way to and from the Gap, Body Shop, H & M, Zara, Foot Locker, etc etc...

Today, the first Saturday of the winter sales, that section of rue de Rivoli was overflowing with people. Walking on the sidewalks required patience, speed, and fast reflexes.

Two RATP (public transportation) bus drivers idled their engines side by side, bemused, as the crowd surged on and off the sidewalk in an effort to get somewhere, anywhere, quickly ! in search of a bargain. The buses were halted, not by cars but by bargain hunters. One driver opened the door of his bus to talk to the other driver through his open window.

- It's crazy today, isn't it ?
- Yes, all these people have left their brains at home.

Gallic shrugs all 'round. The buses start up again and we're off.

Friday, January 13

New Year's resolution...

.... update this poor blog which never really got off the ground.

Was toying with the idea of getting a digital camera as a Christmas gift to myself, in order to upload photos of 5 Streets (and more !) but did not.

Since then have been paralyzed by writer's block (to be honest, indecision and feelings of mediocrity). Because, after all, it's not as if writing about Paris has not been done before, in great detail, by some of the truly Greats.

Enough dithering. There will be updates, I promise.

Watch this space !