Archive for June 12th, 2019

June 12, 2019

Parque Eva Duarte de Peron,Madrid!

And here I come on the left jab at you; something different and off the beaten path of my beloved Madrid. You will need to come out a bit from the Centro or city center to a more Madrileno area, the real thing if looking for culture, and ambiance. I ,again, lived off the main street here Calle de Alcalà but not in the tourist central but away in the Madrilenos area after the M30! Right!

So coming over into the center on Calle de Alcalà you can pass several monuments on your way including the big well known Retiro park, my childhood kicking ground or playground. Lately in life as I continue to visit the city, now every year at least, I have come to get to know more this Eva Duarte de Peron park which you should know was a famous actress and politician from Argentina.

The Parque Eva Duarte de Perón (Park), located next to Plaza Manuel Becerra (Square), occupies the old Nogueras estate, also called Quinta de los Leones or Quinta de Nogueras.(farm of lions or Nogueras).

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These gardens have large spaces with shaded plantain alignments and various sports facilities: paddle tennis courts, football, basketball, sporting elements for the elderly, children’s areas and a canine area. A mythical park for its dog meetings, during rush hour rides. They can be found in all breeds and sizes.  My Rex would love it here!!! A very nice place to walk and talk. Above all, in the spring sun.

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The Eva Duarte de Peron Park has two ornamental fountains of great singularity and a bust in honor to Eva Duarte de Perón, known as Evita, political leader and Argentine actress. The main Fountain or Fuente Principal. Although the Eva Duarte de Perón Park dates back to the middle of the last century, this fountain is much older, and once adorned the Paseo de las Delicias, from where it was moved in 1913 to the Plaza de Cascorro. The round fountain or Fuente Circular belongs to the original design of the park, which follows a classic scheme of boxes and axes bordered by hedges, with a cruciform trace dominated by a longitudinal axis with two fountains, and another transversal with the monument to Eva Perón.

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The park, of 3 hectares of extension, has been remodeled throughout 2018. It has renewed the system of drainage and conditioning the roads and estates areas. New fences protect the landscaped areas and the meadows have been replaced by shrub areas. The canine area has been extended and the fencing renewed.

How to get there, Metro: Manuel Becerra lines 2 and 6; as well as bus lines 12, 43, 56, 143, and 156. The main pedestrian entrance is on Calle Doctor Gómez Ulla, 9, but it can be access by other streets such as Calle Francisco Silvela, Calle Florestan Aguilar,  and Plaza Manuel Becerra, which is from where I always go in right on Calle de Alcalà.(photo).

The city of Madrid on the Parque Eva Duarte de PeronCity of Madrid on the Eva Duarte de Peron Park

Ok so this is a side kick for leg stretching and coming to know the real local life which you should. Away from glossy tourist books, if you are curious about history, customs, language than the Eva Duarte de Peron Park is for you. It has been for me for many years.Hope you can enjoy it. Additional pictures from August 2019.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

 

 

 

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June 12, 2019

Some news from France, CCXXXIIII

So back to my regular series and the latest I can pick as interesting from my belle France. Always something going on in France and hard to keep up but I try my best to tell you. Thank you for reading me, and now the news!

To start off firing hot. ..! The mayor (PS) of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, wants to put a boost to turn the BP (boulevard périphérique)  into an urban boulevard. It wants to quickly implement the lowering of the speed of 70 to 50 km / h and the establishment of a lane reserved for clean vehicles and carpooling, two emblematic recommendations of the report of the information mission and evaluation (MIE) put on debate this past Tuesday at the Paris Council. This axis used by more than 1.2 million vehicles per day for an average daytime speed of 39.7 km / h. Ok so again, no solution is a great solution, Paris needs vehicules to survive and she is destroying, their own records show the number of usages and the speed limit even below what they are recommending!! And how they are going to replace all this driving, the land is expensive, and the public transport is also saturated.  Anyway I do not take the BP too crowded lol! Go into the portes ,gates of Paris in the side streets you advance better lol! Ana should do what Manuel did go back to Spain!!!

Now , this is something good done by the region and Valérie Pécresse is right on !  The cardboard metro ticket, which has been part of the Parisian landscape for nearly 120 years, is destined to disappear by 2021. To replace it, users will have the choice between smart cards or contactless solutions via their smartphone. . Starting this Wednesday, transport users in Ile-de-France can buy a new pass called Navigo Easy (cost 2€) in the counters. The Navigo Easy, inspired by the Osyter Card, of London, (yes use it good deal!!), is for casual travelers and tourists, who consume a few dozen trips a month. The Navigo Easy pass is sold in shops and ticket offices at the region of Ile-de-France stations and stations. It must then be charged by purchasing dematerialized tickets, at the counter or on a terminal. The Navigo Easy badge is not nominative, the buyer can give it or lend it. But beware, it cannot be used by more than one traveler at a time.And for those traveling outside Paris? Ile-de-France Mobilités (the body that govern this by Mme Pécresse) is preparing the Navigo Liberté +, which will be marketed in November. This pass will be billed monthly for all trips actually made, on all bus networks, tram, trains and metro Ile-de-France. The Navigo Liberté + will be for travelers for whom the subscription to Navigo is not justified, or who seek a certain flexibility. Real solutions that will work!

And more on the Paris transport front lol!  Of the three new stations built on the occasion of the extension to the west of the RER E (Eole project), that of Nanterre – La Folie (the name is not final) is the least complex to build. Unlike those of La Défense and Porte Maillot, this station is completely on the surface. It is on the ground floor of this building, in a porch 12 meters deep and 8 meters high, without doors, that travelers can buy tickets and receive information on their trip. An almost station, but not a station. In the same way, the connections with the  RER A line  and the future line 15 of the metro will be made from the street and not via underground passages. There will also be no connection from the station to Paris La Défense Arena: the preferred access point to the enclosure must remain the station La Defense. In addition to being entirely open, Nanterre station will also be a station turnaround, which will mark a break in the flow of trains along the line. Thus, to go to Mantes-la-Jolie one of the terminus of the RER line E to the east (Chelles or Tournan-en-Brie), it will be necessary to change the platform at Nanterre. by the end of the year 2019, the station should be finished with regard to structural work. Its commissioning is however planned for 2022. Improvement to come indeed as I know la Defense /Nanterre is a maze lol! The Eole project in French here: https://www.rer-eole.fr/

For an even nicer news. The good news was announced this past Tuesday afternoon at the Ministry of Culture. The “Ruche”  or hive of the 15éme arrondissement is among the 120 or so sites in France that will benefit from the next Heritage Lotto drawing!. In addition with the will of the Stéphane Bern mission to preserve bees or biodiversity. La Ruche is the nickname that Alfred Boucher, an acknowledged sculptor of the early 20C and patron, had given to the incredible cité d’artistes or city of artists he had built in 1902, on the southern edge of Paris in what has now become the Passage de Danzig. Alfred Boucher rented them, at a low price, to his fellow artists , often forgetting to ask rent to the less fortunate of them. The greatest names of the Parisian art scene of the time succeeded one another, from Fernand Léger to Chagall, passing by  Fujita or Soutine. More on this wonderful site here in French: https://laruche-artistes.fr/

This is the only site retained in the Val-d’Oise dept 95  but it is also the first. The theater hidden under the castle of La Roche Guyon will benefit from the fallout of the Heritage Lotto as well!. The project will be long, probably five years, because there is a lot of studies to do. The Lotto would be a big boost; in two years it could be done. Designed in the late 18C, this troglodyte theater would have worked for two centuries before being abandoned. it will be necessary to wait until the year 2020 because  it depends on the sale of the tickets of the lotto, specifies the Heritage Foundation. After their sale on June 15, a first draw with a jackpot of € 13 million will be made on July 14. From September lotto grids at 3€ and 15€  will also be on sale (buy it if in France). The sums collected will then be divided among the selected projects according to the financing needs expressed. This time, 121 monuments will be renovated thanks to this lottery!! Great news indeed!! More in French from the Heritage Foundation: https://soutenir.fondation-patrimoine.org/projects/theatre-du-chateau-de-la-roche-guyon-fr

Something wonderful is happening in Paris this coming weekend and of course I will miss it ! The pastries festival where the great patisseries of France compete will be held ! Salon de la pâtisserie, From Friday June 14 to Monday June 17 2019, and from 10h to 19H,only until 18h Monday. Where, well of course at the Paris Expo Porte de Versailles, 15éme, hall 5.1. admission for the crowds are from 7-14€ (1€ will be given as donation to the association of the Les Bonnes fées for the sales of tickets onlinne.  More info here in FRenchwww.lesalondelapatisserie.fr

Always a grand event ! Some 3,500 drawings and 650 paintings from the end of the 16C to the beginning of the 20C. But also a documentary fund of great wealth and a complete library. The exceptional private collection of Pierre Rosenberg, former president and director of the Louvre Museum and member of the French Academy, is now in the hands of the department of Hauts-de-Seine (92). And will be partly highlighted in a Musée du Grand-Siècle (great century museum), in  the 17éme arrondissement. The heart of the Rosenberg collection,  which will be born in Saint-Cloud, on the site of the Caserne Sully barracks!  This museum project is a complete rewrite of the copy planned until then for the future of the Sully barracks. Because the site of 1.8 ha, located at the entrance of the park of Saint-Cloud, was supposed to accommodate the departmental archives on 13 000 m² in the building Charles X and a student residence of 7 700 m². The news told here in French: http://www.hauts-de-seine.fr/actualite/divers/la-caserne-sully-a-saint-cloud-accueillera-le-musee-du-grand-siecle-3544/

Auvers-sur-Oise, “really, it’s gravely beautiful,” wrote the painter Vincent Van Gogh to his brother Theo on May 21, 1890. Nearly 130 years later, the impression remains the same, indeed it is a must to visit. Even more with the myth surrounding now the Dutch artist.  As soon as you leave the station, Vincent Van Gogh’s imprint is obvious. You just have to cross the rue du Général-de-Gaulle to go back in time with the Daubigny garden. Next door, in the park with his name, the author of “The starry night” stands, the look on the horizon, his equipment on the back. The gardens (some open to visit) accompany you  to the rue de Paris, at the top of which stands the Church Notre-Dame-de-l’Assomption, Romanesque-Gothic building, now known worldwide through the exposed painting at the Musée d’Orsay. At the top of the hill, overlooking the valley of the Oise, the agitation of the city leaves room for the appeasement of the fields. Gateway to the Vexin Regional Nature Park, cutting through the fields, the path of the Montier takes us into a small wood, leading to the house workshop Daubigny and its garden. Small turn into rue Léry, to the castle, guardian of the history of landscape painting. Its park, very French style, and its benches, offer a pleasant breathing. At the end of rue Gachet, still on the hillside, the gates of Dr. Gachet’s house open onto an intriguing garden. Just before finding the rue du General-de-Gaulle, Van Gogh leaves us there, at the Ravoux Inn, his last home. He died there on July 29, 1890, surrounded by Dr. Gachet and his brother Theo. The latter rests next to the famous painter in the cemetery located at the top of the hill, surrounded by fields.Van Gogh’s house shows on  the first floor of the Auberge Ravoux, a room of 7 m2 remained in the still of the time. Only a chair is lit by light from a small skylight. It is in this room n ° 5 that Van Gogh lived his last days. The place is at 52, rue du General-de-Gaulle. Admission is  6€. More info on the house of Van Gogh here :  www.maisondevangogh.fr.

And she will be back better than ever and traditionally done!  Notre-Dame Cathedral of Paris: a first mass could be celebrated on this coming Saturday!. The festival of Dedication, however, would be a great occasion for the anniversary of the consecration of the Cathedral. The date that was chosen is symbolic. It represents the consecration of the altar. It is very important to be able to signify to the world that the role of the Cathedral is to show the glory of God. Celebrating the Eucharist that day, even in a very small group, will be the sign of this glory and grace. Every year, this festival brings together a hundred Parisian priests during a solemn celebration, on June 16 exactly. This year, given the circumstances, this office would be celebrated this Saturday, at 18h, in very small group, with five or six priests (hard hat on the head) and in the axial chapel, at the bottom of the building. A space preserved by flames and rubble, behind the large golden cross that appeared from the first images of the drama, as miraculously preserved.

As for the ephemeral wooden cathedral that the diocese wanted to install on the Ile de la Cité?  It has been planned to do a little Marian sanctuary. A place of prayer. A symbolic place where people can meet in front of the Virgin of Notre-Dame de Paris This dedicated place will house a copy of the Virgin with the pillar, the most famous of the thirty-seven representations of the Virgin of the Cathedral. It will be sheltered under the sanctuary and the pilgrims will be able to contemplate and pray to the Virgin. It will also be a welcoming place where a priest will be . Candles and flowers can be placed there. Official webpage of the Notre Dame Cathedral: https://www.notredamedeparis.fr/en/la-cathedrale/

And the Seine river is re-inventing itself at least they are trying and worth the effort me think. Bodies of water, buildings, land, structures, the “Reinventing the Seine” call for projects consists in proposing sites all along the Seine river axis, to occupy, animate, rent or buy through the setting of  innovative projects. This multi-site approach must contribute to revealing and concretizing the Seine axis with communities and ports are launching the challenge to architects, entrepreneurs, artists, … to invent new ways of living, work, to move on and at the water’s edge, relying on these different sites. Innovation and the river thus become the two red threads for inventing the twenty-first century metropolis, from Paris to Le Havre, via Rouen. Lots of things going on in the coming years and it is all here for you to know as it goes and ready when here! More here in English at Reinventer la Seine: http://www.reinventerlaseine.fr/en/sites/

And this is it for now, France has always something to come see it, indulge in the French cachet and see it for yourselves. La vie en Rose and a movable feast are just the tip of the iceberg! Enjoy it!

And  remember, happy travels, good health,, and many cheers to all!!!

 

June 12, 2019

The Royal Observatory of Madrid!

Let me show you another gem that is a must to visit if you are into architecture, history and especially the stars as I am. This is again in my beloved Madrid, very nice area and a bit hilly but worth it.

Let me tell you a bit or lot more on the wonderful Royal Observatory of Madrid!

The Real Observatorio is a scientific institution located in Madrid. The national astronomical observatories are one of the oldest institutions for research that the governments of the world created with a defined and important purpose.  The Real Observatorio of Madrid is perhaps the part of the Retiro Park less frequented by the public. It is located in the southwest corner of the enclosure, the closest to the Atocha train station, a few meters from the National Museum of Anthropology. The Royal Observatory is located on a small hill, the San Blas hill. Here was the hermitage of San Blas. This place was chosen precisely because of its elevated location, then on the outskirts of Madrid, a secluded spot ideal for astronomical observations and for study. To visit the Real Observatorio (Royal Observatory), it is necessary to register in advance. The visits are made in groups of maximum 25 people and last approximately one hour and a half. On the tour, visitors access only three buildings. The address main entrance is at Calle Alfonso XII, 3. Located in the Cerro de San Blas, next to Retiro Park. You can also reach it from Atocha up the Agriculture Fishing and Environment ministry building on Calle  Dr Velasco.

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A bit of history I like

As Spain needed astronomy for its application to navigation, having to control a huge overseas empire. The art of sailing became the science of navigation, Jorge Juan being one of the main architects of this transformation. It was precisely he who suggested to King Charles III the establishment of an Astronomical Observatory of the Navy in southern Spain, founded in 1753 and dedicated to solving the problem of longitude at sea, teaching modern methods of astronomical navigation and maintaining the hour.  The French invaders of 1808 (Napoleon I) destroyed the observatory, burned the Herschel telescope and spoiled the books, although a part of the collection of instruments, which had been purchased in specific commissions in Europe, was saved. The purely astronomical activities were later transferred to a new institution, the Real Observatorio of Madrid. The main building of the Real Observatorio of Madrid begins to be built in 1790 in the old San Blas hill. located next to the current Parque del Retiro in the Calle Alfonso XII, and at the same time, the astronomer William Herschel is responsible for the construction of a reflector telescope with a mirror of 60 cm in diameter. However, this initial push ends with the war against Napoleon’s France, which involves the dispersion of personnel and the destruction of equipment, libraries and temporary buildings. In 1834 the Queen María Cristina de Borbón-Dos Sicilias appointed Director of the Royal Observatory of Madrid to the illustrated Domingo Fontán, author of the first map (of Galicia) made in Spain with scientific methods. The activities in the Royal Observatory are resumed in 1845, and the construction of the building is completed the following year. In 1865, the official name of the institution will be that of the Astronomical and Meteorological Observatory of Madrid, until 1904, the year in which the Observatory is integrated into the National Geographic Institute (IGN), forming part of it since then and continuing to this day today.

The reservations and information are done here: IGN official site for the reservations of the Royal Observatory

The various buildings and pavilions of the Real Observatorio is detail below as briefly as possible.

Edificio Villanueva (building). Of neoclassical style, the Villanueva building is the main one of the enclosure and also the oldest one. Inside, you will enter the library, with antique furniture and a collection of more than 6,000 books mainly on astronomy and geography. Next to it are several old measuring objects, as well as two original Herschel telescopes from 1796.

The Pabellon Herschel (Pavilion) is a recent construction with a more modern design. exclusively to house the replica of the large telescope 60 centimeters in diameter that William Herschel designed and built for the Observatory around 1798. Ten years later it was destroyed during the Napoleonic occupation.

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The Sala del Circulo Meridiano or Room of the Meridian Circle, which receives the name of the instrument that presides over it in the center, just up some stairs. It was built by the German astronomer Johann Georg Repsold in 1853 and acquired by the Royal Observatory the following year, thus being one of the most important elements of the institution and the main one of this type when measuring the position of the stars and fixing the hour

The Edificio Gran Ecuatorial (Great Equatorial Building), completed in 1855, besides being able to accommodate the homes of the astronomers and their assistants, had to have a rotating tower in its center to install the telescope equipped with equatorial mount from Merz. In 1922, having been outdated this equatorial telescope; it is replaced by another more modern from the house of Grubb.  At present, both the National Astronomical Observatory and the Central Geophysical Observatory have their headquarters.

The Pabellón del Astrógrafo (Pavilion of the Astrographer) is another of the buildings that you will find in the tour of the Royal Observatory. The name, logically, it takes from the fact of having housed an astrograph inside, having been made from its dome systematic observations of asteroids. For some years it was used as accommodation for several atomic clocks.

The Sala de Ciencias de la Tierra y del Universo (Room of Sciences of the Earth and the Universe). This room is also a recent building and was designed to house a museum. Inside and divided into four different themes such as Astronomy, Cartography, Geodesy and Geophysics, we can see a sample of the valuable collection of instruments used by the Royal Observatory and the National Geographic Institute over the 19C and 20C.

The Pabellon del Sol (Pavilion of the Sun)  is a construction from 1901 The purpose of its construction was to have a building where to place the two glasses of the house of Grubb bought to be able to follow the total eclipse of the Sun that occurred in 1900. Currently, this instrumental has been removed from the domes and taken to the Room of Sciences of the Earth and the Universe for exhibition.

The webpage of the tourist office of Madrid: Tourist office of Madrid on the Royal Observatory

And there you go another gem, and why not while passing by Atocha transports hub which I know many do, and take a hilly but nice area walk up to the Real Observatorio? And if you give yourselves time, you can come and see this marvel ,come back and get your train,ideas for an off the beaten path fantastico de mi Madrid. Enjoy it

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

 

 

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