Archive for July 4th, 2019

July 4, 2019

My job in the Morbihan, sort of……!

Well, the days were right to come to work with my camera and take some pictures of where I work in the Morbihan near Vannes, well not all but some info. It’s a very nice job, in management, with plenty of travel opportunity as we have branches in 22 countries, and my job requires a lot of travel. One of the hidden benefits of the job!

The people are very friendly and nice, and we are allowed to work pretty much independant. We are next to Vannes in quiet, small, cozy country heaven, a big change from my previous post near and in Paris. Sort of….! yes a loving job if I can call it that.

I live about 35 minutes from the job by car on the road N165 or can take a semi detour and come into the country road D19 or even better the D779 . Traffic is minimum, and so far so good. They tell me that on snow days it is difficult, we will see, but in 8 years rien nada nothing of the snow. Heat yes very hot days but with a breeze as we are not far from the ocean so even in the canicule we are the least impacted.

The job is in an old castle originally built in 1504 ,now only the ruins of its walls remains, and the face of the manoir or mansion call Chateau, where the main administrative office is,and where I am ::) It has several buildings inside the Chateau, housing the different departments or as it is call here Services; a beautiful long garden and forest area, and a cafeteria with hot meals serve daily with choices of menus.

St Nolff

St nolff

The place even had a tennis court , and then change to a football /soccer field ; then it was added a club house with baby foot, musculation gym and coffee rest area as well as plenty of parking. It has several other buildings all throughout the old castle part of 44 hectares!

St Nolff

st nolff

My latest trip took me to Mexico, Philippines, and Vietnam. I will leave you with some photos of my job’s place,just for the record in my blog.

St Nolffs

Today typical here so far was a very hot day canicule with temps up to 35C and then slowly coming back to 30C over the weekend, this is summer.   The vacation with the boys is set for Madrid this August so plenty of time to go back to old memorable spots went with my dear late wife Martine and soak in with the boys. It’s a habit that is hard to change, we talk we look but always come back to Spain and Madrid needs to be included!

Hope you enjoy the pictures as I do, memories as also next year is my legal age retirement limit here so thinking already of the consultancy route to stay busy and more time to enjoy my belle France! ,and lovely Brittany !!

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

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July 4, 2019

The Church of Our Lady (Notre Dame) of Izel-Vor!

And I am back in my lovely Brittany and beautiful Finistére dept 29 my neighbors and most often visited dept other than mine in Brittany.  It is like our backyard trip, and we were there this past weekend again. Always looking forward to Summer times.

We decided to go out and see some other parts that we have not been or just passing by. This one we passed near but not been so it was a lovely trip and already use to the beauty we have all around us. Let me tell you about the Church of Our Lady of the Lower Sea or église Notre Dame d’Izel Vor (with Izel Vor been Breton for lower sea or basse mer in French) , and this is at lovely La Forêt Fouesnant!

La Foret Fouesnant

The Church of Our Lady (Notre Dame) of Izel-Vor is the parish church of La Forêt-Fouesnant of the dept 29 Finistère in the region of Bretagne. It was under total renovation so could not get in , however seen pictures of the inside and it is awesom worth the wait to be back inside.

This church was built largely during the first half of the 16C, is dedicated to Our Lady of Izel-Vor (Lower Sea). It is of a typical Gothic style in Cornouaille. The carved dates on the walls can be found: 1538 under the porch, 1628 above the baptistery. The interior of the church (not seen as was under renovation) is said to be remarkable for the richness of its furniture such as the baptismal fonts in granite and wood, the painting of the Rosary 1684, the high altar 1694 and its altarpiece 17C, which are from the 17C. Polychrome statues of local saints complete the decoration . Its Calvary built in 1500. square enclosure serving as pulpit. At the corners; 4 Gothic bells bearing a decapitated Mary and John. The central cask blossoms into consoles bearing the two lardons. Served as a pulpit on busy days; which assumes that the forecourt was then much larger than it is today.

La Foret Fouesnant

There is a statue of Our Lady of Kergornec, also known as the Statue of the Breastfeeding Virgin, which dates from the late 17C. This statue probably comes from the ancient priory of Loc-Amand. Statue of Itron Varia Izel-Vor Breton for Our Lady of Lower Sea, which also dates from the late 17C. A Pietà of the 18C. Other statues of Saints such as Santik-Du, St. John the Baptist, St. Egarec, St. Nicholas, St. Abibon, St. Alain, St. Amand, St. Guénolé, and   St. Margaret. Procession Banners such as the Banner Itron Varia Izel-Vor (Our Lady of Lower Sea). Banner Itron Varia ar Penity (Our Lady of Penity). Banner of St. Anne, and Banner of Saint Teresa.

La Foret Fouesnant

Some webpages to help you plan your trip here are

TOuris office of La Forêt Fouesnant on the Church

Tourist office of Dept 29 Finistére on heritage of La Forêt Fouesnant

Area tourist office of South Brittany on things to see in La Forêt Fouesnant

There you go a lovely trip , nice monument (to be back for it) and lovely town by the ocean. You will do well to see the follow up post on it. For now enjoy the Church of Our Lady of the Lower Sea in La Forêt Fouesnant.

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



July 4, 2019

Church of the Madeleine ,Paris of course!

Looking at some older posts, I realize have not written enough on the Church of the Madeleine in Paris. I did spoked about in previous posts ,but not one dedicated to this wonderful Church ,that was my walking by to work traject 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. I would walk from the Gare St Lazare passing the great department store with Au Printemps on my left crossing the Bd Haussmann towards the rue Tronchet walk around the Church de la Madeleine and continue on rue Duphot to Rue St Honoré ,Rue Cambon, rue du Mont Thabor to rue Rouget de Lisle and my job!! Sublime my eternal Paris!


First, the Paris tourist office has something on it here:Tourist office of Paris on the Church

And in French , the parish site has a lot more here: Official Church of the Madeline

The brief on it is that this part of the Saint-Honoré suburb closest to the Charles IX compound was called the city of Bishops. It was served by a small church dedicated to Mary Magdalene, which stood at the entrance to the present-day bd Malesherbes . The decision to rebuild it as a first-rate monument was taken in 1757; it stems from the royal project of redevelopment of the west of Paris around a square in honor of Louis XV . It  was ordered built a Church here since 1764 to provide a nice ending to the Rue Royale facing the Bourbon palace! In 1806, Napoléon I, 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 108 meters long (350 feet) by  43 meters wide (140 feet) surrounded by 52 Corinthians columns each measuring 20 meters (64 feet). 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.  In the axis of Rue Royale, an octagonal style portico with a triangular pediment adorned with sculptures treated in high relief and depicting a scene from the Last Judgment ; bronze doors, and nests housing 32 statues of saints.


The interior has a vast nave of about 79 meters long (260 feet) 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 I, 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.


At the rear of the church, above the high altar, stands a statue depicting St Mary Magdalene being carried up to heaven by two angels.  The half-dome above the altar is covered with a fresco entitled The History of Christianity, showing the key figures in the Christian religion with  perhaps inevitably  Napoleon I occupying center stage.

paris madeleine virgin behind altar mar13

The Church of the Madeleine has a celebrated pipe Organ, built by Aristide Cavaillé-Coll  which is widely regarded as one of the best in Paris. The composers Camille Saint-Saëns and Gabriel Fauré were both organists at the Madeleine, and the funerals of Frédéric Chopin, Saint-Saëns, and Fauré were held there.  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 :  Official concerts at the Church of the Madeleine

paris madeleine side mar13

There are two important persons buried in the Church. These are Pierre-Alexandre Vignon ,principle architect of the Church who expressed in his last will and testament to be buried here. And, Abbey Déguere, a 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 of the Madeleine 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. It was my walking route to work going around it every day was awesome, and I got to have a sentimental touch to this area of Paris ever since.  You will do well to come and visit the Church of Madeleine in Paris.

A Napoleonic webpage on the Church of the MadeleineOfficial Napoleon site on the Church in English

Remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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