Monday, June 13, 2016

Departure and Arrival~Day 1.

As I mentioned our trip was booked quickly and not too long the trip became closer and closer we were made aware of certain turbulences..
such as the rain that just kept falling on Paris..w/ no reprieve..and the threat of a metro strike and controlers at airports etc..gas stations closed etc etc...
no metro was a huge thing for us as we had planned to use the metro to get around Paris.
And the controlers at airports.. what if..what the plan of a big suitcase to check changed last minute to a simple carry on..when you have a carry store above head and you can have a purse and a laptop..
and this is w/ Air Transat..not sure if the carry on rules apply to every airline in the same manner.
A carry on cannot weigh more than 10kg..and a check-in 23.

On yourself..or anything on board.. liquids ..gels etc.. have certain volume/size requirements..and  w/ your airline as to what size pouch you need to hold sample sized shampoos etc..

Be very aware of this..when I came home..I checked my carry did Jacques..and w/out thinking I had a small jar of mustard..and a facial mister..small size..a little bigger than the Evian mini..Monoprix brand..I liked the blue on the atomizer..
not expensive items AT all..but special to me..
they conficated them..the weight of the mustard wa s abit too high and the atomizer..had I checked them in my bag all would have been fine..I was told go back to check in and ask if they can add we went through the whole check in again..and they said oh can add them seperately for 75 euros..
the 2 together were perhaps 5 euros.
I gave them to the girl and said a use them.

IMHO..well you don't want to know.

I am going to tell you about the trip through my unseasoned traveler.

Jacques brought his purse doubles as a camera case/Ipad I brought another be a purse..but not..hard to explain..I am sure you get it..

friends and family had started to ask..Are you canceling?

Canceling was never in our vocabulary..first of all the tickets were paid for and so was the apartment..not sure how it works with an apartment..something for you to look into if ever this is a concern of I know you can cancel a hotel room..w/ some forewarning.
Anyway we did not consider it..

Plus Jacques said..if worse comes to worse w/ no metro/bus..we can stay in our arrondissemnt..the 7th..and walk to where we want to go..(you can't imagine really ..that 7 days w/ no transportation..only quite limiting..)

he also bicycles every day..I don't and had suggested maybe we could Vélib our way around..I said please don't get your hopes up about me on a bike in Paris..and  a friend wrote and said :"Mon..please don't ride a Paris.."
I so get it now!
Would have been a scream..and I would have screamed.

More on that later..;)

So we left from Pierre Elliott Trudeau Airport..named after our current Prime Minister's father  Justin Trudeau.
PET was once Prime Minister of Canada.

Last time I flew out of there..some renovations were happening.
Let me just say this airport is lovely and clean and new and so advanced technologically.
Caroline and Frédérick brought us and she gave me an envelope to open on the plabne..the kids were excited for us..although all the news was of concern for them over our pleasure of the trip..

The flight flew by..;)..and I watched 3 movies..

And I opened Caroline's note..a pretty Paris card..and out tumbled 3 art works from the boys wishing us a good trip.
Oy I missed them all already it seemed.

It all honesty..I am much more of a homebody .

When we arrived at CDG..a driver was waiting for us..this is arranged through the company we rented the appartment from and I had found info on this company at Chris and Scott's blog here.
Read all their posts on their April in Paris trip..stunning!!
Seeing their beautiful color photos right will see the complete opposite..for the beginning of our trip..

It was 8.30 in the morning Paris time when we arrived.. and we had not slept a wink in the you're up a LOOONG time:)
Adrien was our driver..28 years old raised in Orly.
He was much brighter than the weather but made us aware that there might not be much hope of sunny weather and the Seine was flooded..and the World Soccer championships were eagerly awaited..he pointed out the Stade..where lovely views of Paris beware of people walking up to ask asking us to sign a a ring etc..
A sweetheart and charming..
He dropped us off at our appartment..

and at the same time a greeter from the Company came to walk us through the rental.
we were lucky to be able to get in at 9.15 AM..Jacques and I went up..and then decided to explore the area as were were walking distance to Champ De Mars and the Eiffel Tower..

Surprise! Champ De Mars was closed off for a FANZONE..for the soccer..humongous screens were set up..for fans to be able to watch the games outside..capacity of 90,000 people.
77000 policemen and 12000 private security were to be on hand ..
This info I read online.
There are many links on Google that you can read up on..

So we kept walking in the grey of the day to the Eiffel Tower..
I decided to shoot in black and white or old fashioned certain shooting in color made no what you see is sort of how we saw it..:)

A huge soccer ball floats in the centre of the Eiffel Tower..

It is simply unimaginable how Gustave Eiffel..managed  to build it in 1889..
He was also responsible for the Statue Of Liberty.
Travel teaches you a lot.
I did not know he was the genius for both.
You have to disregard the commercial venues at the base of the tower and simply look beyond that...because it is a surprise..we rarely see photos of the tower showing the commercialism below..
on our anniversary..we had tickets that we bought online to go up..:) We chose second level only and that was good enough for me..the views were stupendous..will share some.
I am so glad we decided to go up.
That tower is just magnificent..look at her lines and details.
Simply unbelievable.

The Eiffel Tower is visible from so many vantage points when you are in Paris..I knew  where we were from home when I saw the distance.
She just rises above it all.

I wanted to take photos at night..but it does not get dark until ap 10PM in June..and by that time..I was literally walked out...

You find a caroussel at the Eiffel Tower..and quite a few other places in Paris.I loved looking at them.

We explored the rue Cler market that we had a kitchen..we could eat breakfast and dinners at home..and picnik out at lunch..I will show you around the neighbourhood..we bought wine..Marie Cantin cheese shop is beautiful and was right there..we had a Franprix too and of course the market vendors/shop owners..we bought just enough for that day~

we also witnessed the Seine and the flooding..I have photos but I find it negates the beauty of the even the day was so dreary.It's like seeing unflattering photos of yourself and I do all the time..I really want to wait:)
But I do have some that show the resilience of Parisians and how an event like that can bring out the resourcefulness of these..

Usually you can walk by la Seine..the boat tours were canceled..

Look how this photo needed sepia in my humble opinion..the scene was so charming and old fashioned to me.

Musée d'Orsay was closed for a few well as Le Louvre..

So many scenes are pure poetry.

I will have brighter days and brighter photos..because we did see sunshine..
I'm just writing my thoughts and making order of my photos..which to keep etc..instead of showing the girls photo by photo..they can just peek here..
It may all become boring for you if it has not already:)
I kept a very small jounal in a small spiraled book and drew 7 little images..
Great to write down..then you remember as places and arrondissements become jumbled when you see so much in really such a short time.
The next time I write will be about our second day in Paris..and unfortunately things did not go as planned ..
I'll relay that also because I don't want anyone else to face that situation.
On the way home..there were many people from France coming to visit..a young girl beside me took out a small journal and the same water pen I used and same little paints..I told her I did the same thing..she said she travels a lot..and does that every time..and she loves looking back on them.
I am adding a song I quite like by an artist I quite like too:)

Zaz et La Pluie


  1. Mon nice picture's and your the idea of the song! Now aren't you glad you didn't bike....🍒

      We even mentioned you because of that..The traffic..At one point in front of l'Arche de Triomphe early in the was scooters in Paris..more buses and cars..and motorcycles..I looked at the bicyclists and even they looked nervous.Some not though..their second's an art..Not for me.

      The last time we brought bikes was the Cape..going up a hill..and not big..I stood to have more leg power..and my seat came off..that was traffic.
      That was the last time..

  2. What a trip! Didn't you were in Paris not long ago!
    It was quite a strange moment to be in France these days, between floods, strikes and current environment, it insured you a very disturbed trip. But, oh my, I am quite choked by what happened at the airport for just a simple jar of French mustard... So annoying!
    Despite all that I hope you had a great trip to France :)

    1. No..this was our first time to Paris..when we went to Provence..we landed in Marseilles..
      I think it was probably not a very great time to be in Paris.
      Things happen..that you have no control you try and go with the flow..
      Paris is magnificent no matter what is going on I think..

      Les éboueurs étaient en grève aussi dans certains les bistros..restos..faisaient face a des piles de vidanges..
      Ce fut surprenant car dans le 7ième ..ils étaient présents tous les les rues étaient très propres.

  3. Ooh! Wonderful! Good for you guys! Paris is on my list. I was hoping to go with my friend Marylou in the next couple years, but now she feels she needs to wait until her kids are grown, their colleges paid for, etc, and they're only 14 and 10 or so, so if I wait for her, it'll be a long wait. Sooner than that, then, I hope to get a post up like yours. :) How great that you did this. ♥

    1. Do it are young and free..and see poetry in imagine.Read my next post if you can also..
      So many young people in Paris..there must be way more young people than older people..the streets are packed with vibrant young women and men.
      It's a bustling very busy city.

  4. If you don't travel often, the rules can be perplexing. And they change from airport to airport, and, I think, even from agent to agent. Most of the big airlines are more generous with carryons (usually 18kg, and they only weigh them if you look like you're struggling because it's too heavy). But the discount carriers are much stricter. Personally, I would have checked a bag without much stuff (no lugging a heavy one), just to be able to bring home a lot of goodies (heavy on the way home). They rifle through everything in the checked bags but at least it arrives. Everywhere, however, the rules about liquids (including mustard, and cheese) are very strict. I'm glad you had a good time. It's also good to get out of Paris sometimes. There's a lot to see in France.

    1. We flew Air Transat..not sure how it would compare to Air France etc.. we looked for the best price and we have flown Air Transat before and the staff is so nice..
      we don't travel luxury at all.
      It was my error to not leave the 2 items in the bag I checked..I never thought of it..but found it say the least.I could have added 10kgs:)
      But I look at things now and say:"Do I need this?"
      And 99% of the's no I don't.
      We didn't buy a lot of goodies..
      Basically we can get so many French items here in Québec.
      My stores that I wanted to go actually buy something were Sennelier..Comptoir De Famille and a peek into E Dehillerin..Galeries Lafayette to just see it:)
      I have been outside of Paris..and loved it..Gordes..Les Alpes Maritimes..
      A seasoned traveler I am not..
      And to tell you the truth..I am home to stay for a while:)
      I live in such a cute town..and live among French and English..very close to Montreal if I need the city.
      Paris was a trip of a lifetime for us..the one time.

  5. Oh wow, what an adventure Monique! I love that you used the same company that Chris did, I remember her lovely posts from France, too. Now I am super jealous and need to book a trip!

    1. I made your blueberry pound cake yesterday:) Only had sour cream but it was still good:) I was itching to bake after 1 week away! Thanks for the recipe..I even snuck a bite for breakfast..a bite;)
      As you probably know Jacques is the sweet eater.
      The company Chris used was top notch for us.
      Both drivers were nice and the girl who came to show us our apartment was down to earth and nice..a New Yorker living in Paris for 10 years I think she said.
      The apartment was spotless.

  6. Monique, Beautiful photos of Paris in black & white! I'm so happy you wrote a journal to remember all the wonderful things you did. My memory is not so good now, a journal is a great idea! Looking forward to hearing more of your Paris adventure ♥ Hugs, Jody

    1. :)
      I guess my little blog posts will really be the legthier journal:)
      Thanks Jody!

  7. Oh, Monique, you have me sitting on the edge of my chair wanting more. I'm truly impressed that you have already posted about your trip. You are so much more organized and disciplined than me. I'm sad that the timing for your trip was when the Seine was flooding. I remember one trip when it was very high, but nothing like it was this year.
    I can't wait to visit with you about Rue Cler. I will send a message. '-) Happy that you took a notebook and did some sketches. I know they will be lovely. You mind is likely full of ideas for sketching and painting. I wait with anticipation! Welcome home!

    1. Rue Cler is sweet..we went To Rue Mouffetard also..and it is charming..but for me..Cler was just sweeter..smaller..don't know how to explain myself.:)The sketches are just tiny little things..nothing to write home about..unfortunately..:)
      I am still half Paris half here time.. 2 AM again wide awake!I don't get up but that's when the wheels turn..;)

  8. What an adventure! So sorry that the museums were closed...hope that they opened and you were able to visit before you have to return home. I love, love your photographs of the area...especially the Eiffel and the carousel!

    1. Yes ! Le Musée d'Orsay reopened..:)
      The day we went to Le Louvre we were with my dear friend and we had other plans..but I saw the outside;)Thank you about the photos was very difficult in that weather..not even a cloudy day..greys..I saw greays the first 3 days..but we got luckier eventually with the weather..

  9. Oh dear not a good time to have visited Paris. Especially with preparation for the European football that has now started. But I'm sure you looked past all that and saw Paris for the beautiful city it is. I loved that you chose to show your photos in black & white. I know exactly how you felt at the airport, we had a similar experience at CDG airport. After the terrorist attack last year security is very strict. Did you manage to meet up with Carol G. ? She would have been able to give you loads of tips of where to visit and the know how of getting around. I'm sure it was all worth it, despite the floods on the Siene. Even now after 26 yrs of living in France, I never yearn to visit Paris, too busy and too many people for me. Looking forward to day 2 post.

    1. Hi Barbara..I have been a follower of Carol's for so long..I think she is the one that mentioned metros first..we did not meet friend Nancy came in to Paris en route to Dublin..
      Yes it was at CDG that they confiscated the two products.
      After 9-11 all airports heightened their security..we were headed to Florida at the end of that October..and people thought we were a bit off to travel..yet everything was fine..well nothing was ever fine after that:( But it went well..we traveled by car and the border was quick enough.
      Jacques and I are not city you we live in the country..
      When Caroline said she may go..Jacques said..let's go while we are able to..all the walking etc..he said let's not wait until he is 80:)
      As it turns out I think Caro and Fred will cruise instead of visit.They had changed their minds before we left.

  10. Monique and Jacques...Adventures in Paris!
    What an exciting trip so far!
    The pictures are fabulous...cloudy and all!
    Looking forward to more pics...
    NEVER bored over here.....♥️
    Linda :o)

    1. Thanks Linda.. me too w/ you.. never bored.

    2. I meant "here"...your blog...NEVER boring....never
      Did you stay at the apt in the link?

    3. We staed at the Rue Cler appartment if you look into Paris For Rent:)It is called that.

  11. Rue Cler is one of my favorite neighborhoods in Paris. I am so sorry you were there during the rains and floods. I am looking forward to hearing more about your trip.

    1. I loved the area too!
      Kind of small town:)
      That's why I totally got your post today:)

  12. Bonjour chère Nana,

    Je suis très heureuse que tu sois à Paris. J'espère que vous allez avoir un merveilleux séjour.
    J'ai un petit appartement traversant à Paris au 68 avenue Rochechouart au 7ème et dernier étage avec ascenseur dans un superbe immeuble Haussmannien. D'un côté il donne sur le Sacré Coeur et de l'autre côté face au square d'Anvers sur tout Paris avec la tour Eiffel... Je viens de le rénover entièrement et il a un charme fou !
    Je vais le louer de temps en temps lorsque je ne suis pas sur Paris mais seulement à des personnes que je connais.

    Je te souhaite de vivre des moments forts et heureux...

    1. Quelle bonheur pour toi..

      en revenant.. CDG..une dame s'est assise ..a coté de moi (je ne peux faire des accents des accents sur les a de mon portable..alors excuse-moi:)..elle vit 6 mois au Québec et 6 mois ..Paris..cela fait maintenant au-dela de 32 ans qu'elle a son appartement..elle travaillait a Paris..elle vend so appart..cette année..c'est devenu trop avoir 2 maisons..elle avait loué l'appartement qu'elle a acheté il y a tant d'années au préalable..
      Je suis d'accord avec faut louer a des gens qui font attention..Ayant été en immeuble pendant presque 30 t'assure que j'ai vu des horreurs en locataires..c'est dommage.
      J'aimerais bien voir ce que tu as fait:)
      Je suis Paris avant-hier..mes jardins avaient besoin de de Jacques..on s'y est mis aujourd' c'est tout frais tout beau encore une fois..mais 7 jours partis..mes jardins me boudaient;)

    2. Quel bonheur! Oh lala..fatiguée de jardiner..regarde..

    3. Merci pour ton gentil petit mot... Via mail, dans les prochains jours, je t'enverrai quelques photos...
      Cette semaine, j'ai dû laisser mes pinceaux. J'ai une assez grande propriété et en ce moment avec la pluie et le soleil qui jouent, j'ai aussi beaucoup à faire dans le jardin !
      Je reviens vers toi dès que possible...
      Gros bisous 🌺

  13. The black and white photos are perfect. Adore the boys fishing.... finding something positive in the floods. I'm so glad you were able to go. Can't wait to read the next chapter.

    1. The boys charmed find an opportunity in a flood.. and to grasp it:)Truly Carpe Diem..

  14. I read this last night but am only getting to commet this morning Monique. I love LOVE the black and white photographs. Perfect! We have friends who had their family over to Disneyland Paris for the same week as you were in Paris and they had a really WET holiday! You have captured the mood beautifully! My mother has an old photograph of me standing in front of the Eifle Tower when I was four years old. It was very foggy and you can barely see the tower. One day I hope to go. We were watching all the flooding on the television. I am happy that you were able to cope well with the transit strikes. There is always someone on strike in France! It seems to be their way! Ahhh . . . but we love it there anyways. My favourite holiday ever was to the Dordogne, and I love Boulogne-sur-Mer. We have been there several times and always enjoy it very much. The architecture, the food, the people. Love and hugs! Can't wait to see more! xo

    1. Thanks Marie..the trip happened suddenly:) Home now and still on Paris time I think;)Would love to see the photo!

    2. My mother has it. I will have to see if I can get my sister to scan it!

  15. Je reviens te lire ce soir, en rentrant du boulot ! Bisous

  16. You could write a book about your adventures Monique - you have a gift - well many gifts but writing should be counted among the many. Love the sepia and B/W photos and love your shots of the Eiffle Tower - great perspective! Thanks for sharing your adventure - can't wait to see more!

    1. You are a much more seasoned traveler than I am:)
      And you bake and cook better too..phto..etc..:)
      I was looking yesterday as I thought you had posted a key lime cheesecake too..somehwre:)

  17. We went to Paris for a long weekend back in 1998 and your photos bring back so many memories. Thanks for sharing your trip. I agree the black and white photos are wonderful. How sweet of your family to send you off with sketches which I am sure you looked at often during your trip.

    1. Thos kids:) And Noah at the arrivals w/ a poster and peonies..I had tears..I am going to send you a very ugly pic of what I think MAY be hellebore seedlings..maybe 5?

      Tell me the truth:)

    2. I got it and they are. I would be teary eyed too if Frankie or Katherine greeted us at the airport like Noah did. Your family is so sweet.

    3. So cute..I still have the poster out.

  18. Love this post. I too wanted more. The first time I went, I had planned it for a long time and it was with my daughters and after 9/11. I said we were going anyway and not letting the terrorists win. I too cannot sleep a wink on overnight planes and trains either. There is just so much to see and do and to tell you a secret, I too find myself thinking or counting the days till time to go home. I guess I am not a traveler either. Just have to live vicariously through the television travel shows.

    1. I thought maybe age had made me a stick in the mud..and circumstances of course..because ..I know I love SEEING different and pretty..and reveled at others photos of trips..a friend in Florida asked Jacques and I one day..what are your goals?
      He is German..adores travel..about our between Jacques and I..we both looked at him and goals..we just live quietly...we were both retired was just 3 yrs ago I think..
      we have no bucket lists..nothing..
      health would be very nice..but apart from home're not searching for anything..I hope I am explaining myself properly..then I think we wondered and booked..and I see that we are best suited at home..or little day trips..our usual ocean visits..he mentioned we felt good and in our place there..The South of

  19. It is so wonderful that we have this platform to share our adventures with others and learn. Before forums and blogging the only people that could gain from our experience were our local friends and relatives. It's also wonderful to relive and adventure that might would only stay in our minds, whether good or bad ;) I'm sure you had a little of both and such a shame about the mustard and mister. Our airline rules are much the same with carry on baggage since 9/11. I think other countries were doing it even earlier. The sad thing about the strikes that you couldn't bring a checked bag. I loved the song you shared and the sepia colors at the end of the video look just like yours. The notes and pictures from the boys - so sweet. Cant wait to see and hear more, Monique!

    I found my garlic scapes right after I had asked you about them :)

    1. I should have spell-checked first - LOL. Forgot to mention how much I love the photo of Jacques in the window and the carousel!

    2. I felt it would be easier if I just put my thoughts down there are know I would have emailed you right away:)Thought about you and John..
      But there really is so much to say..I couldn't repeat it twice;)
      I like Jacques in the window too:)

  20. We stayed in an apartment a block from Rue Cler. Love that area. I wonder if you ate at Reed? The chef owner is Catherine Reed, a French Canadian. She also gives cooking classes. Marie Cantin cheese shop is precious. I can just picture you walking the same streets that we did.

    1. Like Susan, I forgot to say how beautiful your pictures are! Just the perfect black and white and sepia.

    2. We didn't..perhaps if I had known before..I don't even recall seeing Reed..will Google..then maybe I will say..Ah ha!
      Rue Cler to me is just perfect..not as busy as other markets we visited..I don't know..the light..the so cute..clean..pretty.

  21. Preciosas fotos. Muy, muy bonitas.

  22. Tu as réussi à faire de la grisaille de ce premier jour parisien un joli moment ! Ton chauffeur de taxi était sympa,il vous a en effet cité tous les écueils du tourisme à Paris ! ;-) Je connais bien la rue Cler et j'aime son marché. Quel dommage que je n'aie pas été là quand vous êtes venus ... Je vous aurais montré que même sous la pluie, Paris, ça reste la plus belle ville du monde ! ;-) j'attends la suite, maintenant, en regardant à nouveau tes ravissantes photos sépia, qui vont si bien à cette ville au riche passé ...
    Bisous et à plus tard, donc

    1. Elle est absolument magnifique ta ville..l'architecture..l'histoire..les quoi se rincer l'oeil partout.

  23. It's so fun living your trip through your post Monique. I'm sorry about the weather, that really puts a damper on things but it seems you made the best of it!
    I had the same marvel as I pondered the intricacies of the Eiffel Tower. It is simply incredible!

  24. I love the photo of Jacques in the window ;o)
    Nice photos in black and white and sepia.
    Sounds like a wonderful trip despite the weather!

    1. I like that one too:) He's easy to photo..not camera shy..:)

  25. Oh Mon Ami, your adventure sounds delightful.I love to stay at home, but I so love to travel. It makes me feel alive and it is the unknown that adds to it. It makes one realize how small the world really is and how alike we all really are. Weather is so unpredictable, but what a story it makes.I remember years ago when there was a heat wave in Paris. I was disppointed because they had to remove all the chocolates from the windows! After all, that is why one goes to Paris, is it not?

    1. I nevr got the travel bug..or I did ..yes I did..and it went away..
      I have become a real stick in the mud.
      I am wide eyed..and observe everything when we are out of our comfort zone..I'm always looking..even here..and I find everything..well wow..:)
      Moreso countrysides I would have to say..

  26. Glad you had an adventure...welcome home.
    Bisous xoxoxo

  27. I hope you share your sketches.

  28. There is plenty in the 7th but I look forward to more of your adventures and yes, the sketches, too. The photos are terrific! I remember reading Edward Rutherfurd's "Paris" and if you haven't read it, one of the main characters is a steel worker on the Eiffel Tower. It was fascinating, just for that part alone! You're right about that sepia photo!

    I had forgotten till you wrote about your airport confiscations that had some French bath gel confiscated too. Nothing special -- Monoprix too! But as you said, special to me. I'm a tad envious of your traveling, although this summer will have more than usual for me (our recent trip south, Canada and/or Martha's Vineyard. We'll see. But I'd chuck it all for a flight to Paris!