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Paris and back again

I had a leisurely trip to Paris. double0hilly and I ate and drank and wandered. We walked down into the starkness of the Deportation Memorial, its inner corridor of lights a tasteful and moving tribute to the dead. We walked the Seine and its islands, marking flood levels and bridge date. Signs caught my eye: Heloise and Abelard were here; Jacques Callot's street; Polish bookstores; a line of green tea bath products which, once noticed, became ubiquitous.

We walked the length and breadth of the Jardins de Luxembourg. After the Medici Fountain, statues of famous French female rulers, a fountain full of sailboats, grass to sit on, grass not to sit on, a playground, tennis courts, and the Statue of Liberty, we found the pear collection. I can't even remember who recommended the pear collection to me. It's a systematics collection, designed to help catalog the species of pears. It's spectacular and large. The pears are cosseted, wrapped in bags for protection, shielded by chain link fence and netting. They have to have their own dedicated gardener(s). The collection has been there around two hundred years now. Our visit to trees was my one history of science expedition for the trip.

Near the pears was a beekeeping lesson in full swing, with copious signs warning us to keep our distance. Perhaps a dozen white-suited, veiled, hatted people with cameras clustered around a number of bee hives. Smoke poured up into the air and hordes of bees circled the students. Signs, unviewable at the warned-away distance, presumably advertised the garden's bee collection.

The sun was warm and soothing, the breeze light, the sky blue with fluffs of white.

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( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
intertext
Jun. 7th, 2007 11:19 pm (UTC)
Were all the wrappings still on the female rulers? When I was there, there was a rather good exhibit in the Orangery of images of women, and in honor of that, all the statues had become installations. [I rather think you would have mentioned it if they were still there, but I thought I'd ask]
owlfish
Jun. 8th, 2007 08:06 pm (UTC)
No, they were all lookable, at least on the side of the park we wandered across. On the far side, it looked like one of them was in a glass box? Perhaps still under wraps. But not most. I took photos of a few of them, if this means you didn't get a chance to see them properly.
calindy
Jun. 8th, 2007 12:56 am (UTC)
Any recommendations on where to stay and what not to miss? I'll be there just before England, so June 30th - July 5th.
owlfish
Jun. 8th, 2007 08:07 pm (UTC)
I have no good advice on where to stay, I'm afraid. I stayed with a friend this time, and stayed in overpriced miniscule hotels in times previous. The 6e arrondissement is a very nice, comfortable area, however, so I can recommend that in general. Book a hotel early to up the odds of choice and reasonable rates, especially since it's high season.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )