Saturday, October 17, 2015

Fourth Full Day in Paris

Sleep is fitful at this point. I'm not sure why, it just is. There is so much to absorb here, and I woke up thinking about my sermon for this Sunday. I have waited to write it until I heard more from what the convocation is going through, to bring them good news. I hope, at least, to bring them good news. 

Steve and I awoke fairly early and headed out for our last tour with Sight Seekers Delight -- the most wonderful sight seeing tour company I have ever experienced (and I've experienced many). Lucie was our guide today, and she was wonderful.

We were on our way to meet our tour -- we knew it was a longer metro ride than we had previously experienced, so we left ourselves an hour to get there (should take 45 minutes from where we are staying). Well -- in the bizarre twist of the day -- Steve got in the metro but I was too slow so I stuck my cane in the door as it closed -- off went the train with Steve inside and my cane hanging out the door.
He managed to rescue my cane but injured his thumb in the process. I met him at the next station. Here he is at Starbucks (yes, really -- don't judge me -- it was the only coffee around that we could find...really. But here he is nursing his thumb with my cane hero!

We met up with the tour guide Lucie and two of the other travelers from the other day -- so good to reconnect with them! Once again it was the perfect small group tour. Thank you Karen from Sight Seeker's Delight for this great tour!

We started out with an explanation of this neighborhood -- Pigalle - right across the street from Le Moulin Rouge (the red mill). We heard about the history and the current context (big red light district). It was a pretty seedy neighborhood. But, the minute we started heading up the street it got better -- and better-- and better.

Among the BIG surprises (not just the "getting better" heading up the hill toward Sacre Coeur was the surpise of seeing the cafe that Amelie "worked" in -- in the movie of the same name. Wow! I was
hoping my daughter Jardine could be there with us to see this -- it is one of her favorite movies. 

We continued up the street and got to see various pictures of art painted on the buildings by modern street artists as we heard about the lives of famous artists that lived in Montmarte -- including Van Gogh and Picasso. 
Here is a picture of the placque that is on the wall of the place that Van Gogh lived (his brother Theo's place).

they lived on the third floor, and there is a sunflower hung off the window. You can barely see it in this photo -- sorry!

We continued up the hill and one street became more beautiful than the other.

As we continued up we viewed the private courtyard that once was the staging area for Jewish children in the area to come before being sent to concentration camps. How something so beautiful could have been the place of such tragedy. 

We continued on to view other streets and scenes.

We also saw the very old cinema that Amelie was in when she watched the movie -- it is small and shows independent movies today. The man who made the original Beauty and the Beast in French -- I think it was Jean Cocteau -- 

A little part of the walk later, we were introduced to this sculpture  -- an illustration of a story about a man who could walk through walls. The hand was fashioned in resemblence to that of Jean Cocteau -- and the leg is of his lover, who I THINK was the artist of the piece. Steve is holding his hand in this picture. It was great!

We continued walking and saw many great things and heard all the stories -- I'm not sharing everything because I refuse to give away the whole of this tour.

We DID make it up (and into!) Sacre Couer -- beautiful! We were not allowed to take pictures inside (many were, but I try to follow the rules). The nuns were singing -- I think they were Carmelite nuns. Very beautiful!

We headed down the hill through an artists enclave and saw where Picasso lived. 

We also saw the place where Amelie would see her friend -- and where she messed with the mind of his boss. So cool!

We made our way down the hill.

In the end, we said goodbye to our most wonderful guide. Some of the group stayed together and we had lunch at the guide's favorite restaurant.

Steve and I made our way over to the Cathedral to be there for the last session before the Eucharist tomorrow. On the way we got off at the wrong end of the train station and found ourselves at the Arc de Triumphe - nice coincidence!

Back to the Cathedral where I spent the rest of the afternoon listening to the small group reports from the Convocation members -- brilliant ideas and sharing on their current situation and mission and ministry! The picture is a little dark but you get the idea.

Back to the hotel after that to write the rest of my sermon for tomorrow.

An early-ish dinner and then now to bed.

Can't wait to be at the Cathedral again tomorrow!

Here are some other pictures --

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