February 27, 2017

Some news from Spain, XXXVII

Ok this is it, heavy rain, strong winds, the Breton coast is reaming with the weather yet temps remain moderate at around 10C or 50F. Getting ready for my trip to Spain and Portugal tomorrow so a good way to finish the week with some updates on things of my Spain.

Sara Baras (Cádiz, 1972) is presenting finally the show “Voces en Madrid”. Together with partner and artist José Serrano, musicians and dancers will be at the Teatro Nuevo Apolo to give honor to the masters of flamenco such as Paco de Lucía, Camarón de la Isla, Antonio Gades, Enrique Morente, Carmen Amaya, and Moraíto. They will be present with their words and artistic heritage. The Teatro Nuevo Apolo is at Plaza Tirso de Molina, 1. Show going on now. Until March 30th, more here: . http://www.summummusic.com/sara-baras-voces/

The III Salón de los Vinos Radicales a symbol of the effort and labor of small winegrowers that stay loyal to their original varieties with soil and climate will have 34 Bodegas participating of which 16 will be for the first time, Guardians of the small and essential nothing of the big groups or extensive vineyards or boutique wines these are the radical wines straight from the land to you.. It will be held on March 6 at the COAM, or Colegio Oficial de Arquitectos de Madrid, Calle Hortaleza 63, More here: http://www.coam.org/es/colegio/contacto

A great movement in the 1950’s comes back to Madrid north, a open air cinema Autocine Madrid RACE with 300 places for parking and a screen of 250 meters! The place is located in the Chamartin area, C./Isla de Java,2 and has a capacity of 1500 persons. There will be different movies shown as well as shows, operas, new films as well as classics. The sound will be done through your FM radio and will have as well an authentic American diner with terrace and several food trucks. The Autocine will be open all day of the year and hours will vary according to the activity and the sunshine hours. To facilitate the entry of all autos those with campig cars, or large vehicles will need to park at the end and on lateral spaces ;inside you can only drive at 20 KPH,and the place will be open even if it rains .Admission will be children 4,50€ and Adults 8€ euros (weekends), and 7€ Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays. More here: http://www.autocinesmadrid.es/

And for the many Carnavals going in this time of the year in Spain ,here are some family favorites in Madrid:

Maty, Maestro Victoria, 2 metro Sol Tel. +34 91 531 32 91 ,Calle Hileras, 7 metro Ópera Tel +34 91 541 20 16 ,more here  www.maty.es.  It started in 1943 for flamenco articles, ballet and dance now it is one of the biggest stores in Madrid for all costumes for all events . It has more than 1.200 m2 in two floors.

Fiestas Paco, Calle Toledo, 52 metro La Latina Tel +34 91 354 06 70; more here: www.fiestaspaco.com.  The store was founded in the 1930’s as Caramelos Paco as a big Candy distributors. Due a great success they added costumes and the Fiestas Paco came to be . You can find here all inspired from the 1920’s for all adults and children.

Chindasvinto, Calle Clara del Rey, 59 metro Alfonso XIII Tel +34 91 416 78 86 ;more here:  www.chindasvinto.es   A small toy store in the neighborhood of Prosperidad that since 1967 has remaind open. They have costumes for all year occassioins from the economical to the classics for young and old/ Also, wigs ! from famous artists.

Party Fiesta shopping center C.C. La Vaguada (Avda. Monforte de Lemos, 36), metro Herrera Oria Peñagrande Tel +34 91 730 97 75; more here :  www.partyfiesta.com.  This one has as well all costumes in every detail and they have 75 stores all over Madrid with all types of accessories.

Carnaval de Las Palmas, here they come until March 5, the best in several locations in the hot Islas Canarias; and just watching TVE tv of Spain and getting ready to see it at 22h30!! see the Gala de la Reina (Queen gala) , Carnaval al sol (Carnaval of the Sun), the Children contests on costumes and the two nights of Carnaval. More here: http://lpacarnaval.com/en/

You need a car but if you go to the limits of the provinces of Alava and Burgos you will find the Salto del Nervion, a waterfall, biggest in the Iberian peninsula (Portugal and Spain) with 222 meters high. You can only see the fall in a few months out of the year mainly in January and May. This is the period of the ice melting or rains in the area the park Monumento Natural del Monte Santiago, located in the western part of the Sierra Salvada and the town of Las Merindades. The best site to see the falls is at the Mirador del Nervion or lookout spot, where the park folks make it easier to see it.

To reach it is easy and can be done by several routes. The one I know is from the town of Berberena,Burgos , but,also from Orduna, in the north. Once inside the park you choose the parking to leave your car and walk :J

There is plenty of signalisation and you can even walk with kids or bikes or baby strolls cars/More here: http://www.patrimonionatural.org/espacios-naturales/monumento-natural/monumento-natural-monte-Santiago

Ok so my photos are not that good, me and my small Samsung digital. However, Antonello Dellanotte, has excellent photos of his adventures and has created a page for them call Retiro Experience. Why ,I am putting this here, because the Retiro is where I used to lived close in Madrid ,and it is sublime. Here, he compiles hours of investigation from archives and libraries as well as anécdotes on the park. Most of the data base comes from the city of Madrid ,and the library or Biblioteca Nacional; or Works like ‘Historia del Buen Retiro’, from Rosario Mariblanca, and the Casón del Buen Retiro (Prado). You can see his collection and buy them on site . more here: http://retiroexperience.com/

Some numbers crunchers ,like in my job but this is better lol! The lidia bulls have increase in Extremadura to 32.101 in 2016, almost a thousand more tan last year and the biggest number in five years ,even with the crisis in the business; this is as per the last census done by the Ministerio de Agricultura y Pesca, Alimentacion y Medio Ambiente (Mapama) , Andalucía (250) and Castilla y León (178), Extremadura,108, are the region with most farms of brave races. From the 32 101 heads in Extremadura, 19.697 are females and 672 males data gathered by agency Efe. More on agriculture in Spanish from the Mapama site here: http://www.mapama.gob.es/es/ganaderia/temas/default.aspx

The director of the Museo Nacional y Centro de investigacion Altamira, Pilar Fatàs has mentioned that it cannot guarantee the limited opening of the original cave of Altamira with admission of 250 persons per year for too long. Any decisión will come from the technical reports of the Plan de Conservación Preventiva. The Director has recognize that in France they offered more protection for these types of monuments having developed art centers and investigations of great proportions that allow people to see reproductions to protect the original. It has to put up with conditions to protect the extremely fragile condition of the Paleolithic art in the cave with multiple paintings such as the sala de los polychromes  and its bison (hall of bison polychromes) discovered in 1868. They have already modified the internal structure of the cave and built artificial walls to hold up the ceiling of the room as well as filling with cement the deeper opening on the walls; this change irreversible and radically the natural dynamic of the cave. The cave had 250 visitors and the museum 285.000 in 2016 or 8% more than last year. According to the director Fatás,the archeological museum is the most visited in Spain and Europe just behind the Museo Nacional de Arqueología. Also, in 2016, there conducted 7000 guided visits as well ,and welcome four expositions, organized more than 1.000 activities with a participation of 170.000 persons. More here: http://en.museodealtamira.mcu.es/

And to finish with a historical footnote I like. The story of explorer Hernando de Soto. Or Spain in the USA. Hernando de Soto abandoned everything and gave his fortune obtained from the conquest of Peru on orders of Pizarro in exchange for a royal license to discovered and populate new territories. Following swamps, rivers, forests, with alligators snakes and deadly insects to what before was a rich young men , well married in Sevilla with an aristocratic young women, Isable de Bobadilla, and his future secured. The royal license came with a title of  Capitán General y Adelantado de La Florida or Captain General and noble of FLorida. In 1538, he set sail with about 1000 men to explore new lands and lands in Tampa, Florida. He quickly come into indians Warriors attacks ; during months he explore and has only one friendly encounter with the princess Cofitachequi (Sp) that offered him pearls from the river. The indian chief Tascalusa (Tuscaloosa) invite him for a few words with good deeds to his village of Mauvila, enclosed town and once the Spanish come inside they are attacked by the Indians. This is a feroce combat that last for 9 hours of which De Soto fights standing as already wounded in the backside that dont allow him to ge ton the horse; this was the biggest battle in the history of Spain in the new territories with several dead on both sides and only to be cure from the carcass of the dead.

Exhausted and hungry, demoralize they received news of ships arriving from Cuba to picked them up. Hernando de Soto is not a soldier but a noble of the Crown of Spain and refuse to believe in the black leyend , the real misión is not to find gold but to follow the will of, seeds, cattle, luggage etc. They have already travel and obey the  queen Isabel la Católica, to follow it and to convert the locals into the Catholic faith. They decided to continue to find other towns and territories. They arrive to the Mississippi river in 3 years of pilgrimage and they go down to Mexico coming back with familiesStates of Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Illinois, Carolinas, Louisiana, Tennessee, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, and Arkansas. Destiny did not allow that the future USA was an extension of Hispanic America. Only an insignificant mosquito stops him from following up the dream. He died on May 21, 1542, in Ferriday, Louisiana Remember him, from Extremadura, Spain, Hernando de Soto. Bit more here: http://www.biography.com/people/hernando-de-soto-38469

Enjoy your week and read you soon, cheers.

ps. Going to rainy parts of Northern Portugal and Galicia where the weather has not been good either.

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February 26, 2017

Honfleur ,Normandy.

I do not need to say more of this quaint little town. Just that is was my summer trips with my parents here,and my mother love it. She passed away 9 yrs ago ,and this month it was here birthdate on the 13. So I look at my posts as even when go here not in the mood to take pictures.

I did one a while ago (2011)  here:

https://paris1972-versailles2003.com/2011/02/25/honfleur-seamen-paintersand-normandy/

And then for the Fête des Marins (2013)  here :

https://paris1972-versailles2003.com/2013/05/21/honfleur-fete-des-marins/

With a seafaring tradition and one of the best equipped SNSM lifesavers volunteers in the French coasts (I am a supporter) , this is a must for any visitor. Besides, been the most visited already in Normandy behind MSM.

Honfleur is magical and my mom rest at sea here, with the braves and those who decided to laid there, the boat Notre Dame du port of the SNSM took her out. And  we come often. See it here:https://www.snsm.org/etablissement/station-snsm-de-honfleur

Two events you should not missed if any in coming here is the Passionnement Jardin or passion about gardens. April 29-30 2017. All about gardens and with expert advise on site, just bring your plans and they will tell you . In addition to flowers, plants, trees on display and ready for purchase, right by the public garden overlooking the bay entrance to the city. More here : http://passionnementjardin.org/

The other is a must for us ,and we all love it. The story of fisherman and marine people in this town goes way back ,and the La Fête des Marins will be held this year in June 3,4,5, 2017, along the bay coming into the canal to town, and you can see all along the wall of the canal on the before mentioned public park.  They carried the Virgin on shoulder and put it in a boat to go out at sea for the blessing. The Sunday is the Benediction at sea and honor to those perish at sea as well as the blessing of the boats . Then, we all climb the pilgrimage up the Côte de Grâce until the little chapel of Notre Dame de Grâce, where a great open air Mass is held. This festivity has been done since 1861 ! more on the Normandy tourist site here: http://www.normandie-tourisme.fr/fma/la-fete-des-marins/honfleur/fiche-FMANOR014V502DU8-1.html?iDD=11

And keep an eye on the Honfleur tourist office too here: http://www.ot-honfleur.fr/evenement/la-fete-des-marins-2/

Read my previous posts above, it has plenty of info and photos ;so much to enjoy here at Honfleur, artists, shops, restos all around the basin de l’est  in the harbor. If by car  parked over the canal in the entrance to the town for like a 4 euros. Up the road by the butterflies museum ,Naturospace, you can park for free but the walk is more.

Enjoy Honfleur, Normandy!

Honfleur

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February 26, 2017

Church of the Madeleine in Paris

Looking at some older posts, I realize have not written a piece on the Church of the Madeleine in Paris. I did spoke about in posts ,but not one dedicated to this wonderful Church ,that was my walking by to work direction for over two years in Paris!

Many nice memories of stopping by at the shops around it from Lavinia, to Nicolas, Hédiard, Fauchon, Maison madame de Sevigny,  the lower level stores and my rest stops at the café madeleine just looking at it. Some of these shops are no longer there like Sevigny but the spirit rest the same.

First, the Paris tourist office has something on it here: http://en.parisinfo.com/paris-museum-monument/71158/Eglise-de-la-Madeleine

And in French , the parish site has a lot more here : http://www.eglise-lamadeleine.com/

The brief on it is that it was ordered to built a Church here since 1764 to provide a nice ending to the Rue Royale facing the Bourbon palace! In 1806, Napoléon, change the plans in order to provide a temple to the glory of the French armies… The building with columns was to resembled those in Athens; the Church once again dedicated to religious worship was finally finished in 1842.

It is an imposing appearance of a classical temple with 350 feet long(108 meters) by 140 feet (43 meters)wide surrounded by 52 Corinthians columns each measuring 64 feet (20 meters). There are no external bells or cross to show this is a Church but in the bronze doors (3 tons) you see bas reliefs of the Ten Commandments and the niches hold 52 Saints inside. The interior has a vast nave of about 260 feet long (79 meters) with three bays surrounded by flattened domes . Two beautiful sculptures  such as “The Rapture of Mary Magdalene” in marble ,and “The Baptism of Christ“, on the surface of the dome you will see a fresco covering about 23 feet of “The history and Glorification of Christianity” .  This is the only fresco in a Church in Paris where you see the figure of Napoleon, surrounded around the Christ, Mary Magdalene ,and the apostles the great personage that marked Christianity such as Constantine, Clovis, Godefroy de Bouillon, Frederick Barberousse, Jeanne d’Arc, Dante, Raphaël, Pius VII , and the emperor in sacred costume.

There are music concerts here with an organ from 1846 ,they are held on Sundays at 16h; this is the site for info in French : http://www.concerts-lamadeleine.com/index.php?action=concerts

There are two important persons buried in the Church. These are Pierre-Alexandre Vignon (1763-1828) principle architect of the Church who expressed in his last will and testament to be buried here. And, Abbey Déguere, (1794-1871) priest of the Church who gave the first communion to the Imperial Prince Louis Napoléon Bonaparte; and was executed by the communards in the rebellion of 1871 in the house of arrest of the rue d’Haxo.

The Church sits on the wonderful Place de la Madeleine, where a flower market was held since 1834, and there still is places there today as well as the before mentioned stores.

One of the icon monuments of France and a must on a visit to Paris. I know too many most but this is Paris ::) Cheers

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February 25, 2017

La Roche Bernard, boating, history and quaint city center!

I could not missed the rugby match with France vs Ireland later on and now watching a great match where Scotland beat Wales 29×13 in the VI Nations tournament. The day was cloudy with sun ups sometimes, and weather in the 10’s C or 50’s F no rain. It was time to use the best of the morning for a short ride to a town in the Morbihan I like too even if smallish.

The trip is about 53 minutes from my house and La Roche Bernard is a nice boater’s heaven full of history as well. The tourist office is here : http://www.tourisme-arc-sud-bretagne.com/12-lieux-de-vacances/Visiter-La-Roche-Bernard

In addition, I had written on it back in November 2011 : https://paris1972-versailles2003.com/2011/11/06/la-roche-bernard-or-bernards-rock-idyllic-quaintand-a-nice-visit/

As well as in November 2013 : https://paris1972-versailles2003.com/2013/11/23/la-roche-bernard-a-boaters-heaven-protected-by-a-rock/

Well ,this time it is not November but February 2017 and it was time to re visit. Again , so many places to see in Brittany ,sometimes I find myself surprise of how far back was my last visit to a place.

La Roche Bernard you reach it by the N165 to it, and once on the D765 you entered by the bridge or Pont de La Roche Bernard over the river Vilaine. The bridge was built in 1839,and it has 349 meters long of which 193 meters are hanging over the river with 6 meters wide. This bridge suffered the storms damaging it and it was replaced by a wooden passarelle until 1911.  Of which time a new steel bridge was built  measuring 350 meters long with 192 meters over water and 7 meters wide; the height over water level is 41 meters. After damaged during WWII a new bridge is built finally finished in 1960  . The current bridge is 407 meters with 245 meters over water and 84 meters over the river Vilaine . Once  over the bridge you entered the town and just follow Centre Ville and the parking La Vôute to go into the harbor where the big rocks are ,from where the town gets it’s name Roche=stone.

We took a long walk along the cale on the river right underneath the bridge , and then a walk in city center to its wonderful history of Catholic and Protestant history, and the guillotine during the French Revolution in the main square place du Bouffay. Here you have the Michelin wonderful Auberge des Deux Magots and hotel; more here : https://www.aubergedesdeuxmagots.fr/

We saw the complex of the mayor’s office and library as well as shops such as Guyodo Lehebel Deco full of home deco with sea motifs and others, gourmet local delicacies, and clothings. More here: http://www.commerces-larochebernard.com/pages/annuaire_fiche.php?id=55

right there is the Créperie La Sarrasine just on the square to the left Place du marchix . Again closed now for vacation but in better weather it is not to missed for eating here is more : http://www.tourisme-arc-sud-bretagne.com/fiche/detail/575/A-voir-a-faire~Dans-l-assiette~Restaurants/Cr%C3%AAperie-La-Sarrasine

One place not to miss other than seeing the boats and the artists on the trail from the 16C, that is marked by many of them is the Maison de l’Abeille or bee’s house; even if now is closed, opens again in April. All about honey which I love and get mine there all the time it is open !!! More here: http://lamaisondelabeille-morbihan.fr/

Another site I recommend when open from June is the museum maritime ;more here: http://www.tourisme-arc-sud-bretagne.com/fiche/detail/565/A-voir-a-faire~Patrimoine~Musees-et-chateaux/Mus%C3%A9e-de-La-Vilaine-maritime

The museum is divided into floors with the first one is dedicated to the history of the bridges, the Street level is dedicated to Breton traditions on the Gulf of Morbihan, and the inferior level sort of second floor is dedicated to the boat La Couronne built here in 1629 on orders of Cardinal Richelieu to improve the naval defenses of France and participated in many battles including the best known as the Battle of Cardinals in 1759. It is also open from June to September with 3€ admission.

The harbor history and facilities are here :

https://www.passeportescales.com/fr/port-la-roche-Bernard

And anything on the river Vilaine in French is here :

http://www.eptb-vilaine.fr/site/index.php/plan-dacces

You can see some nice architecture and history on the House of the Canon (16C, timbered house of the 15C, the oldest in the city, district Tower ‘ Isle which was refuge for Protestants, and later the Notre – Dame 16C. One I always stop by is the church of Saint Michael or St Michel. This Church was built in 1633. In 1878, almost in ruins, the old Church is replaced by a new one with more space. The Church is of course in the square or Place Saint Michel.

We were there when the circus RITZ was announcing performances today and tomorrow, more here: http://www.tourisme-arc-sud-bretagne.com/fiche/detail/2608/Agenda/Cirque-RITZ—La-Roche-Bernard-

The tourist office put out a nice video on YouTube for La Roche Bernard here:

We came back to eat at home as was also doing our groceries in Vannes at Carrefour and needed to be home for the rugby ::) so far France 6×7 Ireland  at halftime.

Enjoy the photos and find out about another interesting town of the Morbihan Breton. Have a great weekend. Cheers

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February 22, 2017

Some news from Spain XXXVI

That time again to tell you what is going on in lovely Spain. Around me the weather is damp humid light rain about 10C or 50F; down in the great Madrid there is now 63F , tomorrow more of the same about 65F expected to a low of 42F, cloudy sun in and out, no rain.

Something from Spain:

The Mudéjar style is evident in Teruel , a town we passed by many times and have visited couple times over the years, we will be by it again this coming summer. To see it you must come to the Catedral de Santa María de Mediavilla; the tower or Torre and Church or Iglesia de San Pedro or in the towers of the Churches of San Salvador, and San Martín.  The most famous monument of them all is the mausoleum done for the the lovers of Teruel.  There is a long legend that tells the story of the lovers of Teruel. It goes that Juan Martínez de Marcilla  and Isabel de Segura were in loved in 1217,however ,the family of the lady did not allow the relationship because the future husband (name as Diego in some texts) did not have enough money to provide a good life for the girl.  To gather fortune the young men left far from Teruel while the bride to be waited.  Destiny had that the father of the lady married her to a rich men in town. Juan returned to Teruel and found the lady with another men, and he ask her to kiss him before he died. Isabel for not failing fidelity to the new husband refused , as this Juan died on her footsteps. The other men and the lady took Juan to the house of the father so no one could tell she killed him, however ,the pain that Isabel had was so great that she decided to kiss Juan before they buried him.  Like this , the lady attended the Church of San Pedro where the body of Juan laid, and kiss him ,quickly she died next to him.  It was here in this Church that the bodies of both Juan and Isabel laid while discovered in 1555 until 2005. It is now about 12 years the bodies lied in the monument done in their love story.  The work that keeps the corps are in an impressive building mausoleum done in marble plaster showing the hands of the lovers without touching  a symbol of the impossible relationship that never took place. The representation of Juan is shown with the feet covered as per the legend they were already shrouded when he received the kiss from Isabel. More here: http://www.turismo.teruel.es/?nav=amantes_ciudad&lang=en_US

Do not just end your visit here, continue into the plaza del Torico, name in honor of a small bull that crown the column in stone.  The legend of this bull is that it was the bull guided by a star led the troops that disobeyed king  Alfonso II  in the 12C until they were able to conquer the fortress of Teruel. More on the mudéjar style here: http://www.turismo.teruel.es/?nav=mudejar_arte

If you like wines ,then Spain is for you. One of the best and my favorite is the Compañia Vinîcola del Norte de España or CVNE; located in Haro. Here it rises on a space created by the one Gustave Eiffel (yes of the Paris tower). The space is wide open without columns! where the barrels lied without obstacles. Once you visit at the end you can taste their wines. More here: http://www.visitascvne.com/en/

Talking about Spanish wines, here are some stats. Spain has the largest vineyards extension in the world with 1,012 million hectares (OIV 2016). With a population of 46,06 millions in 2016. In 2015 the wine consumption was 1000 million liters or 21,7 liters per person and 4,16% of World. (OIV 2016). It is the 8th world market for the consumption of wine in 2015 even if the younger generation tends to go for the beer and strong alcohols. The Reds are the predominant ones with 52% of wine consume in 2015 with fruity or woody tones the preferred of the Spaniards. The domestic production is 3,270 million liters in 2015 and the 3rd World producer, even if exportation numbers are weak. The exports represent 71,7 millions liters in 2015 with a value of 193,4 million Euros. It remains the first world exporter of wine in volume with 2,400 million liters in 2015 exported as well as the 3rd in value with revenues of 2,64 millions Euros. France remains the first provider of wine to Spain in value with 49,1% of the market and the 4th in volume with 3,29 million liters of French wine for a value of  13,58 million Euros or  8,4% (Comtrade, 2016).

The Romanov of Russia started governing about 404 years ago.  The absolute power of the dynasty (1613-1917)  coincided with the period of mayor expansion in Russia. Málaga  welcome 247 works of art from a hundred artists from the collection of the Russian museum of St Petersburg. The best works and will be showcase until January 2018 with full of images of tsars , farmers, bandits of the Volga as shown in the work of  Sarin na kicku! (‘battle cry’) of Sergey Ivanov. The work exhibit has jewels such as the portrait of tsar Nicolas II, the last tsar by Ilia Repin and other secret works such as those of  ‘head of the princess Tarakánova’,by Flavitski (1864), where the white light entered the eye of the princess. There are portraits of big sizes such as the ” Corpse’ by Ivan Miloslavsky of 2,25 cm high and 5,60 cm wide. The Russian museum also has the work of the funerary main cask in bronze of  Peter the Great from 1725. More here: http://www.coleccionmuseoruso.es/exposiciones/la-dinastia-romanov

Also , in Malaga you will have at the same time the temporary exhibition of  ‘Kandinsky y Rusia’ ( until next July.  He believed in the internalization of the works that shows some like ‘Improvisation number 11’ (1910); ‘Black spot I’ (1912); ‘ portrait with white edge’ (1913); ‘Four with points’ (1919) and  ‘In White I’. More here: http://www.coleccionmuseoruso.es/exposiciones/kandinsky-y-rusia

Slippery, faker, seductor, bon vivant, bohemian, and scrounger these are some of the adjectives of the life of drama and comedy of  José Zorrilla(1817-1893), the last romantic that is celebrating 200 years of his birth in Valladolid, on February 21 1817. He was born in the old house of the Marquis de Revilla, located in the street calle Ceniza  and rented by his father that arrived in 1816 to Valladolid to filled the post of reporter of the Royal Counselee .  In this house converted into the museum in 2007 on a Romanticism and the poet, exposition hall, conference center, plays and permanent home of the book fairs or  Feria del Libro de Valladolid .  His work like “El puñal del godo” and “Traidor, inconfeso y mártir”), A buen juez, mejor testigo’, and  ‘Margarita la tornera’, the inmortal ‘Don Juan Tenorio’ (1844), from which could not get author’s royalties as he sold it to his editor, and  ‘Recuerdos del tiempo viejo’ (1880), a autobiography.  This romantic men had two marriages and two daughters that never made it out of early age; he wrote to the limit of poverty and live on a day to day basis even if he gave the most important work of the Spanish Theater (Don Juan Tenorio). He ,indeed was recognized in life and his funeral was a mass manifestation of his fame; all the contrary to what happened to  Cervantes, another tenant of Valladolid, that in his life was not given any honors and made no money. More here: https://www.valladolid.com/casa-jose-zorrilla

By the end of January in Budapest there is 10 degrees below zero, the snow covers the city and the river Danube is an ice bed. In the museum of fine arts or Beaux-arts in the city closed for renovation since February 2015, 90 of the best works of the artistic heritage of the country are been translated to Spain. The exhibition is name Masterwork from Budapest, and will be shown to the public from now to May 28 in the Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza of Madrid. Amongst the 90 art work you will see the schools Italian, Flemish, German, French, such as Rubens, Van Dyck, Gossaert, Giaquinto, Carracci, Tiepolo, Guardi, Canaletto, Ricci, Manet, Kokoschka, Cézanne, Monet, Gauguin, and Pissarro,  also, Hungarian artists. Some of the chosen ones to come to Madrid are a Velázquez -‘El almuerzo’-, a Zurbarán -‘La Inmaculada Concepción’, a Murillo -‘La Virgen con el Niño repartiendo pan a los sacerdotes’, an Alonso Cano ‘Noli me tangere’, a Mateo Cerezo -‘Ecce Homo’, and 3  Goyas: ‘Retrato de Manuela Camas y de las Heras’, ‘La aguadora’, and ‘El afilador’. The Hungarian jewels will be grouped into 7 sections  from the renaissance with a painting credited to  Leonardo, the baroque in Flanders and the Netherlands with the greats Rubens and van Dyck,  the baroque of Spain and Italy including Velázquez, the 18C with the 3 Goyas, and a monographic room with the changes in visage of women with work by  Manet or Kokoschka. The modern period to WWI close out this exhibition with works of Pissarro or Bortnyik. The collection of Spanish art of the fine arts museum of Budapest includes about 110 work of art being one of the best in the world. How it happened?  In 1818 the Hungarian duke Nicolás Esterházy, an avid collectionist, buys from the count Edmund Bourke in London 22 works of Spanish masters and upon his death 24 years later other 24 in addition to the widow of the Count. Upon the passing of duke Nicolás, his grandson  Miklós  transferred the collection that continues to grow from Vienna to Pest in 1865. Pressure by his debts he sold it to the Hungarian government in 1870 for a price less than its value present value would be around  165 millions Euros for a total of 637 works. A good business for Hungary that continue to expand its collection over the years of Spanish master paintings. More here: http://www.museothyssen.org/microsites/exposiciones/2017/Budapest/index_en.html

Well Olive Oil is Spain, anything else is an imitation ! and they do bottled it with other countries lot as well in Europe ::) No one really knows how it became but the plant goes back to the Neolithic period (7000-3000 a.C.).  In Spain, there is nothing like the paysage of the olive tree, the Oliviers of Spain owe as much to the Romans as to the Arabs;if the arrival of Scipio and his legions to the Spanish lands gave the plant its biggest push for expansion, it was during the Arabs period the cultivation was really expanded and its explotation arrive for use in the kitchens. Some of the icons of the genre are: Dominus, Sierra Magina, Jaen; Marque de Valdueza, Mérida, Badajoz; Abbae de Queiles, Tudela, Navarra ; Cladium ,Cordoba ; Casas de Hualdo , Toledo; Aubocassa, Mallorca; Castillo Pereleda, Girona, Emporda; La Cuisine Organic Malaga ,Ronda; Marques de Grinon, Capilla del Fraile, Toledo ;Dominus acebuche,Jaen. The consortium of olive oil webpage is here: https://www.oliveoilsfromspain.org/

And what about that ham huh!!! You just need to open the doors of Cinco Jotas, a building with 130 years of history; open for the first time to the public. You will see one of the icons of the Spanish cuisine, the race ham iberic or jamon de raza ibérica, raise in free forest land fed with acorns. Cinco Jotas is in Jabugo in the heart of the Parque Natural Sierra de Aracena y Picos de Aroche (Unesco biosphere preserve). The rounds begins at the old dry patio of this emblematic building done in 1879 even if not a bodega until 1910. Here in an enclosed patio where in the bygone era the hams were hang for 6 months until the bring down of the hams, a feast was done for all the town of Jabugo to celebrate the effort and dedication of the ham tenders. A great gourmet event takes place in the main founder’s bodega for all visitors to marvel. Here thousands of hams awaits five years to reach the perfect point of cure in perfect ambiance conditions and controlled humidity to the millimeter. The visit ends with an interactive game that will put you to test your attention during the visit and a tasting from the hands of the master curator. You can, add a visit to the forest to understand the entire cycle , raising of the pigs 100% Iberian ,natural growth, and the mountain time for fattened them. The building is call the  Centro de Promoción e Innovación del Cerdo Ibérico (CIPI), an architecture marvel of stone and brick and nickname the Tiro al Pichón (clay pigeon shooting) for its feability of its construction and to show the route of jabugo with conferences and activities. Guided visits from 15€ for 75 minutes or 60€ bodega and forest trip.  Also, a good restaurant in the building. Reservations by tel +34 603 599 061 or more info here: http://cincojotas.com/

You can do good to go to the town of Linares de la Sierra,and eat at the restaurant restaurante Arrieros, with a  menu on Iberian pig of acorns and its derivatives, the mushroom of the  Sierra de Aracena , and the vegetables from its garden.  More info and reservation here : http://www.arrieros.net/new/restaurantearacena.html

Enjoy Spain, everything under the Sun ::)

 

 

 

 

 

 

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February 20, 2017

Some news from France CXLXIII

Ok so the saga continues early in the week, cool humid foggy in the 10’sC 50’s F and no sun yet but no rain either. Not bad after all, the week started ok doing my planning for business travels to come.

First, let me tell you about the wonderful world of Auguste RODIN. Shortly after his heart fell after the separation from Camille Claudel, Rodin go to lived in the Villa des Brillants in 1893 with the idea of leaving from it all. He died in the summit of his glory in 1917. His 100 years are celebrated with appearing in the coins of 2€ from the Monnaie de Paris soon in circulation, to the film interpreted by Vincent Lindon that will have his biopic expected out in May. His collection is now in the Hôtel Biron at Paris 7éme where most of his works is held or at Meudon (Hauts de Seine dept 92)his last home. In this modest house of red bricks sitting on a hill facing Mont Valérien where today it is very calm.

In the interior, modest furniture, the table on pylon, a small bed in upper level, all over antiques, his passion with over 6000 of them. There is his major work of “Amis de la dernière heure “.  His atelier shop , main room big and lighted with a renaissance bed in the middle. Rodin, full of work had built the pavillon de l’Alma, where he shows his work in the garden in 1900. The current museum conserve the spirit of his atelier shop, here several works in plasters.  Of which many had a splashing revue and even scandals such as the ” L’Âge d’airain”, in 1877. Rodin was accused of making the model from a men. Several years later he did the famous thinker or “Le Penseur” that was treated as a gorilla by his contemporaries; also the ” Balzac” ,and ” pingouin”.  Several years before his death he wrote : The real artist always express what he think at the risk of shoving all the  establish prejudice or ” Le véritable artiste exprime toujours ce qu’il pense au risque de bousculer tous les préjugés établis “.

Musée Rodin Meudon, 19, avenue Auguste-Rodin, à Meudon (92). Open Fridays to Sundays 13h to 18h. admission 5€ More at  http://www.musee-rodin.fr/fr/le-musee/le-musee-rodin-meudon  and the 100 years anniversary info here: http://rodin100.org/en

In this exceptional scenario where there is an amphitheater like no other in Paris, this is Theâtre 13 at the  103A boulevard Blanqui . The theater has two displays that of « Jardin »  and « Seine ». The garden was closed for 2 years of renovations. It will open now to the public with two days of guided visits , spectacles and concerts all free. More here  http://www.theatre13.com/

The new movement now is to upgrade the WIFI in the Paris metro and trains to 4G . The line 1 of metro to the gare de Lyon. Also, the line 5 at Bastille, and the line 6 at  Charles-de-Gaulle Etoile. In all five stations of the line 1 and four of the RER A. The idea started in  2013 to do the coverage of 3G and 4G  in the 320 stations of the metro and RER A,B  to be done by 2016.  However, this was not achieved and extended goal to do by end of 2017. The work is difficult as underground created in the last century there are already  3 000 antennas to link 300 kms  of cables and fiber optics.  It will enough to send your telephone into WIFI mode ,connect to the network « RATP gratuit » , and accepted the user conditions.  The access is free and easy , connection is pretty good but limited to 20 minutes. In the metro , the stations are gare de Lyon (Quai métro L1 direction La Défense), gare du Nord (Zone d’échange line 4 – SNCF / Line 4 at the counter machines level), Charle-de-Gaulle Etoile (Salle d’échange sortie/exit Carnot), Saint-Lazare (Salle d’échanges), porte Maillot (at the level of counters), Chaussée d’Antin (at the level of counters) ,and  Gallieni (Zone accès Eurolines). In the RER at the la Défense (Salle d’échange, Quai RER A Direction Paris, Mezzanine (1), Mezzanine (2)), Auber (Salle d’échange), Cité U (at the counters level) ,also, at Marne-la-Vallée Chessy (at the counters level). More info here in French for more : http://www.ratp.fr/fr/ratp/v_153411/du-wifi-sur-le-reseau-ratp/

At the rénovation of the stairs to the Grande Arche de La Défense, the escalator is been renovated for quite a while now slow due to high winds. It should be done by April 1st 2017 in the presence of the President of the French Republic (France). It will ,then, be open to the public every day; the panoramic elevators/lifts will allow you to climb to the top of the Arch where it will be a restaurant, exposition space, auditorium, and exterior promenade to see Paris at 360°.  More in French here: http://defense-92.fr/tourisme/le-toit-de-la-grande-arche-reouvrira-le-1er-avril-2017-44847

The Great Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer (1632-1675), a legend amongst the greats of the painting, his imaginary milklady painted as a real queen with a sort of Virgin Mary immortalised in the daily work and exposed at the Rijkmuseum in Amsterdam.  Exceptionally, it will be exposed since February 22nd to May 22nd at the Louvre in the company of 11 other works by the artist master of Delft.  The French museum is  organising  an exposition of 70 paintings on what they call the people’s scene or the daily scènes of life. The 17C was the golden century of Dutch art and it is believe that 5 million paintings were done in 100 years. Vermeer did not invented the genre, but he created a style that surpasses all the others.  There are 36 works of Vermeer that are known, and a third of it will be reunited here . All next to the « La Laitière » , you will see the « La Dentellière » , a lady of high society in a work of art. Exposition : « Vermeer et les maîtres de la peinture de genre ». Paris, musée du Louvre, hall Napoléon. More here: http://www.louvre.fr/en/expositions/vermeer-and-masters-genre-painting

Do you know the kig ha farz ?  this is a tradition of the Finistère region of Brittany, it means literally « beef and stuffing or the equivalent of the pot-au-feu. It is made of vegetables  (cauliflower, carrots, onions, beans, and leek) , and meat of beef and pork ; the cooking is adaptable to the left overs, all cook in a bowl to boiled.  The stuffing it is prepare by putting a sort of pancake barter  with black wheat or  barley in a bag closed by a string that goes into the boil dish for about an hour.  Later, we cut it in slices to serve with the vegetables and meat . You should come here first but if not, in Paris go to Chez Michel near the gare du Nord at  10 rue de Belzunce, 10éme. Tél. +33(0) 1 44 53 06 20. Will cost about 35-50 euros for an entrée-plat or plat-dessert with a glass of wine.  More in my favorite resto link in France that is in the bottom of my page in blogroll, here : https://www.lafourchette.com/restaurant/chez-michel/208405

What it is with the soaps vs shower gels? The square soaps are making a comeback! All led by the simple cosmetic firms and the boutiques . One exceptional is the savon de Marseille .  They have come up with processes that cook in cauldrons and cold pressing allow to produce soaps with less grease and richer in vegetable glycerin with characteristics of detergent wash soap, hydration,  and grease . These are like the brand Gaiia. Also, those of  Enfance Paris ,and the Brazilian brand Granado, now commercialize in France by the department store Le Bon Marché since 2012, with delicate perfums of chesnuts of Brazil, witch hazel,  iris, and orange flower and its packaging retro.  The luxury sector has embrace this resurgence in the soap, such as Hermés now has a line of them with iconic motifs of the house; Chanel has them too.
Find them here:

https://www.gaiia-shop.com/

http://www.marius-fabre.com/fr/3-savon-de-Marseille

https://www.enfance-paris.com/

http://www.lebonmarche.com/marques/granado.html

http://france.hermes.com/parfums/le-bain-hermes/coffret-3-savons/3-soaps-gift-set-64184.html

http://www.chanel.com/fr_FR/parfums-beaute/parfums/p/femmes/coco/coco-savon-pour-le-bain-p113910.html#skuid-0113910

The Basilique de Saint-Denis (Seine-Saint-Denis dept 93) necropolis of the kings of France from Dagobert to Louis XVIII, prototype of the Cathedrals of Notre Dame de Paris will see its tower arrow of 85 meters again.  It was raised between 1190-1230 and in disrepair from 1846 due to violent storm that befell 12 bells in the region, and needed to take it down in 1847. The ok to built is ok with conditions on the financing, this will happened soon so stay tune. In the meantime ,there is the webpage : http://www.saint-denis-basilique.fr/en/

Now what about that word “Château” that is define an AOP region in wine country of France. It should not be confuse with the word Château….. the viticole designation was created for good by article 7 of the decree law of May 4 2012. It simply states the word Château is designated to those wine regions of AOP designation that are issue from grapes harvest on plot of land that are use for wine production as well as making it.  This is well known in the area of Bordeaux from the 19C and extended to the SouthWest, Languedoc-Roussillon,Provence, and Rhône regions. In the south, there is ,also a château in Champagne, the Château de Boursault. In Burgundy  there are some but rare as the majority of plots here are too small and owners with different plots in different areas . The first time the term was seen was from a decree of August 19 1921  given life to an existing wine exploitation and to provide a cultural meaning as said in a bottle.  Therefore, when the bottle says “bottled in the Château”  is about a businessmen or négociant that purchased the wine already produce to have bottled himself under the commercial name of his choice, cannot use the word Château ; unless as often happenned in the Bordeaux region  that this négociant is also the owner of the vineyard.  SO he is under the term proprietor and not négociant .  Another distinction is not to have the name Château if the wine comes from a non AOC area such as a table wine level.

After all these, how can our American friends taken a tradition of a century and a half could take this name to use in their vineyards areas. when there is already a English term for it such as “Estate”, unless only for economic intentions ,they pull the cork too far ::) France , UNESCO World Heritage immaterial for gastronomy and wine.  Cheers

Have a great week everyone !

 

February 19, 2017

The Opéra Garnier of Paris

This is one of the most emblematic icons of Paris, and had written on it way back in 2011 in my blog; here it is

https://paris1972-versailles2003.com/2011/03/21/parisopera-garnier/

The one point is that I used to worked just across the street and had this beauty all by myself to marvel from our mezzanine level floor , of course coming to work walking by it every day. It stuck on you, like anything in Paris does.

TO built it and finished it by 1875 it took some demolition of a good part of the neighborhood of Chaussée d’Antin that saw many mansions from the 18C disappeared. So need to give you a bit more on its history.

The Opéra has two semi circular buildings on each end. It was done to host emperor Napoléon III in the pavillon de l’Empereur giving to the street rue auber and the place Charles Garnier.  Decorated with eagles in bronze preceeded by two ramps to load furniture’s ,etc ; this pavilion d’honneur is today the Museum Library of the Opéra .

It has a great hall à l’Italienne, with red and gold tones and five levels of windows that makes it at level with the street rue Lepeletier de Debret raised in 1821, beforehand the salon of the street rue de Richelieu from the 18C.  You see the sun and the symbol of Louis XIV on top of the scene recalling the foundation of the Académie Royale de musique in 1669.  A composition painted of Chagall replaces since 1964 the ceilings painted by  Lenepveu.

The wonderful grand salon or grand foyer  was inspired by the  Palace of the Doges in Venice on the ceiling evoking  the music, mythology and Christianism. The influence of the Galeria Farnèse des Carrache, on the ceiling by the galerie des glaces of Versailles, and the Bibliothéque or library of the Palais-Bourbon of Delacroix  can be noted.  The paintings of  Delaunay (Apolo receiving the lyre, Orpheus , and Eurydice…), of Barrias ,and Clairin, completes the ensemble. The abundant golden decoration contribute to the lighting on the columns, chimneys and caryatids.

All in front of the Place de l’Opéra built before the Opéra Garnier. It was done taken some portions of the boulevard des Capucines and Grands Boulevards. From it ,the streets ride out in star formation such as the avenue de l’opéra, rue Auber, rue Halevy, rue du Quatre-Septembre, and rue de la Paix that takes you to the Place Vendome.

You have interesting places such as Paris Story, telling about the history of Paris; musée du parfum Fragonard, the Café de la Paix (under my supervision, and historical monument of France) as well as the Le Grand Intercontinental Hotel (also under my supervision, and see photo salon opera historical monument of France) ; the metro line 3,7 , and 8, as well as the stop by the Roissybus from CDG airport (rue scribe/auber).

And do not leave without trying the Opéra restaurant , you go in by the  place Jacques Rouché to the right facing the façade of the opera. More info here: http://www.opera-restaurant.fr/fr/

As Paris, all is sublime, the Opéra Garnier is a masterpiece of France. Enjoy it.

Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris

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February 19, 2017

My travels in the Morbihan XV

And finally Sunday, quiet on the city and mild temperatures in the 50’sF 10-12C bit cloudy sun wants to but can’t; and leisure time awaiting some football/soccer games.

I was out yesterday, our working horse day with the family as more travel abroad looms and our summer house in Spain is booked. We have so much nearby it will take more than a blog to tell you, and we are quasi middle distance from it all. Just found out maybe have visitor friends from the USA coming in July! just to check out my area I know, they will be surprise as usually won’t venture out of Paris and the south of France.

The last time I see wrote about the area of Lorient and Guidel was back in 2016, for Lorient alone was back in 2013! yet these are about 30 minutes from my house; goes to show you how much there is to see around here.

For confirmation on what to see, here is the tourist office of Lorient

http://www.lorientbretagnesudtourisme.fr/votre-sejour/liste.cfm/visites/?type_prestation=&motscle=&commune=Lorient&dateingenie=&dureeIngenie=&submit=Search

And some in English from the city homepage here: http://www.lorient.fr/eng/

For confirmation on what to see, here is the tourist office of Guidel http://www.lorientbretagnesudtourisme.fr/decouvrez-le-territoire/commune.cfm?region=guidel

And some from the city homepage of Guidel famous for it’s surfing mecca : http://www.guidel.com/temps-libre/sports/guidel-ville-surf/

You can reach Lorient to Guidel on bus line 60, takes about 36-40 minutes here: http://www.ctrl.fr/se-deplacer/horaires/fiches-des-lignes-regulieres/#searchtc18840

We of course, took a leisure car ride along the D16 into the D33 to connect with the expressway N165 direction Lorient.

We came here to do some shopping with my other half Frenchie who loves a particular store here call Damart, going back to grandma habits lol! so she finally got her shoes. Always nice to walk around the square Place Alsace-Lorraine even with construction going on around it and see the big branch of Galeries Lafayette as well as the modern Church of Notre Dame de la Victoire built in 1955 after WWII had destroyed the one there from 1810.  There is a nice carrousel and kiddie rides as well as an important bus terminal .

Oh yes Damart is here: https://www.damart.fr/magasins/lorient

then, we continue for a leisure ride back into the N165 direction Guidel and its beaches. Taking exit 45 at Guidel road D306 direction Guidel you are in town in 15 minutes! We pass by the town to see our old hangouts by car and continue to Guidel Plage or beach along the same road D306 here we stop for lunch at a picturesque stop on the bay along the road D152 several restaurants overlooking the shallow waters of the bay coming in from the ocean. We ate at La  Plage , ::) or The Beach a resto pizzeria place with a nice fish and chips , Britt Breton blonde beers, coffee and sweets combination or café gourmand , and the other had from chorizo and mussels to four cheese pizza to more fish and chips all with the same beer or desperados and the same café gourmand coming to 22.50€ per person reasonable for a beach town with a view overlooking a nice terrace. It is by the beach Le Bas Pouldu. no webpage some reference for location: https://www.pagesjaunes.fr/carte?bloc_id=029778055400000000C0001&no_sequence=0&code_rubrique=54053000

In Guidel town, you have a nice Church Saint Pierre et Saint Paul in place Polignac city center,  surrounded by shops ,restos, and parking !

For the beaches this is a site I use here that is pretty good info for them before arrival for orientation, facilities and safety: have on Guidel : http://en.plages.tv/seaside-resorts/guidel-56520

They are better known to surfers but good for the whole family with shallow water and playground for kiddies; two big section of games and restos ,one by Le Bas Pouldu and the other by plage de la Falaise.(cliffs beach).

Along the beach boulevard road D152 you arrive at Fort Bloqué, a nice stretch of sandy beach and the great fortress built in 1748,  that like yesterday in low tide you can walk to it! Can’t go in thus, it is a private property! This is already part of the adjacent town of Ploemeur, more info the beach here that is public, http://www.morbihan-tourism.co.uk/ploemeur/plage-du-fort-bloque/tabid/8475/offreid/60889b33-8241-4c8f-9a53-123ecfa2ffff

http://en.plages.tv/detail/fort-bloque-beach-ploemeur-56270

and this is the regional TV France 3 in French but a nice video on the Fort , trying last time for sale in 2015. http://france3-regions.francetvinfo.fr/bretagne/morbihan/lorient/vous-cherchez-une-demeure-de-prestige-le-fort-bloque-est-nouveau-vendre-744641.html

On the way back, well, we did our groceries right there in Guidel at the Super U supermarket. Just coming back up on road D306 direction Lorient. Nice clean store, and friendly service all ready for beachgoers and al. more here: https://www.magasins-u.com/superu-guidel

Another nice, fast, inexpensive family outing in our lovely Morbihan. You are welcome, Degemer Mat ::)

Cheers and enjoy your Sunday!

Guidel Guidel Guidel plage Guidel plage Guidel plage Guidel plage Guidel plage Guidel plage Guidel plage Guidel plage Guidel plage Guidel plage Guidel plage Guidel plage Guidel plage Guidel plage Guidel plage Guidel Guidel Lorient Lorient Lorient Lorient Lorient Lorient

 

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February 18, 2017

Some news from Bretagne XIII

And this is my Bretagne, now for the last 6 years of my life. Wonderful coves, harbors ,beaches and great forest of king Arthur fame. I am in the Morbihan dept 56 the only one in France ,name not French ::) but Breton. Degemer mat= welcome to the old dukedom of Brittany.

The weather was nice today about 56F enough for folks to come out and even walk on the beach, great fun for the surfers here! We did our errands and some sightseeing nearby in our department, some of that later. For now, some news on Brittany.

From March 3-8 you have the Festival de la Parole Poétique or the poets speech rights festival in the Sémaphore, this itme an homage to Jim Morrison. More here: http://maisonpoesiequimperle.blogspot.fr/

and here: http://www.printempsdespoetes.com/index.php?url=agenda/fiche_eve.php&cle=48113

The 16th Rencontres du Cinéma Europeen will have a run March 1-7 in Vannes, special presentation will be on Flandre. More info here: http://www.cinecran.org/10797-2/

Something found and good to come in just for Le Vinocrate, 24bis rue Paul Guieysse in Lorient. From a selection of wines from the famous Guide Hachette, you will have meals and wines all matching. Directions here: https://www.yelp.fr/biz/le-vinocrate-lorient

Another good and tasted is The Galway Inn, 18 rue de Belgique in Lorient, folk, jazz, country blues and Traditional music ,open 17h to 2h, great ambiance always. Games on Tuesdays at 20h. More info here: http://www.thegalwayinn.com/

A bit late but if around until February 22nd, come and enjoy Récré Days in Lorient fun for the entire family. More than 50 activities for young and old. More info here : http://www.recredays.com/2017/01/04/maxi-recredays-parc-des-expositions-de-lorient-4/

Quelle Histoire or what a history going on at the archives department of the Morbihan until June 23 2017. 56 dates telling us the story of the area and France; very good and free admission. Open Mondays to Fridays from 9h to 17h30. More info and directions in French here: http://www.archives.morbihan.fr/informations-pratiques/horaires-et-acces/

Right by Guidel Plages you may want to see the Galerie Kerbrest, expo of paintings and sculptures by local artists from Grancher, Gurun, R Hess, C Mingant and others. Open everyday from 15h to 19h during  July-September, and all Sundays in off season.  More here, http://galeriekerbrest.blogspot.fr/

About going for a boat ride or fishing in Doêlan just south of Quimperlé on road N165 direction Moêlan-sur-mer. This is Passion Mer: aboard the boat Océanide I you can go for one hour or all day max 10 persons so very individualise. rates from 15€ for 1h to 80€ for all day.  More in French here: http://www.passion-mer-doelan.com/

nice small Casino at Larmor Plage open every day from 10h at 24 bd de Port Maria. roulettes machines, table games, bar restaurant and good ambiance on the beach. More here : http://www.casino-larmorplage.com/

Les émancipéés Festival will be in Vannes from March 10-12 showing all about music,books, and theater all at the Théatre Anne de Bretagne. The presentation around Scénes du Golfe or scenes from the gulf (Morbihan).  More here: http://www.scenesdugolfe.com/festival-les-emancipees-tab-127.html

At lorient in the Espace de Sciences of the Maison de la Mer you will have the Circuits portuaires until Feb 24th and then again from April 4-28. All about the sea from tides to rades to fishing and naval secrets… reservation is a must at the tourist office +33 (0) 2 97 84 78 00. http://www.lorient-tourisme.fr or more here in English: http://www.espace-sciences.org/your-visit

Now for the youngsters taken a cue from my sons, there is a nice discotheque by the beach area of Guidel in the town of Quéven =Paradisio, open fridays , Saturdays, sundays and eve of holidays with music from the 70’s and 80’s with buffet all sundays evenings. More here: first tel +33 (0) 2 97 80 21 20 or cell/mob +33 (0) 6 12 45 58 63: http://www.guidedenuit.com/discotheques_morbihan/paradisio

And to close out, the Festival of gastronomy and wines in Vannes. Salon des Vins et de la Gastronomie March 4-6 at the expo center Le Chorus in the Parc du Golfe. This has only a 5€ admission and its very popular here already in it’s 25th edition. More here; http://www.salondelagastronomie.fr/nos-salons/ouest/salon-des-vins-de-la-gastronomie-de-vannes-56

And the le chorus exhibition center here with directions in French: http://www.lechorus.com/infos-pratiques

Enjoy visiting the Breton lands of France. It’s magic just ask Arthur, Merlin,and Morgane ::)

 

 

 

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February 17, 2017

Place de la Concorde in Paris

Well this is the most famous square in Paris.  It started out named “Place Louis XV” in 1763. Later named “Place de la Révolution”  during the period of terror in the French revolution, and finally took the name of the  “Place de la Concorde” in  1795, to mark the reconciliation of a Nation. Again , it was re-named  “Place louis XV” in 1814, and further  “Place Louis XVI” in 1826.  It was not until the reign of king  Louis-Philippe in 1830, that it takes the current name for good of the  “Place de la Concorde”. Concord or harmony of a nation.

The Paris tourist office tells you some here in English: http://en.parisinfo.com/transport/90907/Place-de-la-Concorde

All roads lead you here, I used to work for many years not far close,,,, and use the metro concorde on bad weather when not walking by it to work. sublime! Public transport passing by here or close are bus lines 17, 18, 20, 21, 22, 24, 26, 27, and 28. Metro stations  Concorde- Line 1 | station Balard -Line 8 | station Porte de la Chapelle / Mairie d’Issy – Line 12.

I have written a piece on it several years back like 2011 lol!!! so much to write on Paris right !!) Here is the link to that older post:  https://paris1972-versailles2003.com/2011/03/20/paris-place-de-la-concorde/

And now it’s just reminder of it with more photos, the concord square or plaza de la Concordia or place de la concorde is sublime , beautiful ,romantic ,what Paris is all about ;be on it. Cheers!

 

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