Archive for September, 2020

September 28, 2020

Paris and Pl de la Concorde!!!

So this is a very popular spot in my eternal Paris. It seems the world convenes here after a long walk along the Ave de Champs Elysées or the Rue de Rivoli! I was lucky enough to even worked just around the corner from it and walk to work from the Gare Saint Lazare passing close and seeing it every day for almost 9 years!

Of course, I have told you about it before but this is new text , more history and new photos not in my blog yet. Hope you enjoy the Place de la Concorde of 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 of the French Louis-Philippe in 1830, that it takes the current name for good of the  “Place de la Concorde”. As Concord or harmony of a nation.

paris pl de la concorde obelisk and eiffel afar nov19

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. The Concord square or plaza de la Concordia or place de la Concorde is sublime , beautiful ,romantic ,what Paris is all about!!!


A bit more on the history I like and brief description.

The Place de la Concorde was created between 1755 and 1775, on the initiative of King Louis XV!. King of the French Louis Philippe, under the July Monarchy, asked in 1839 to rearrange it. The two fountains in the Place de la Concorde, inspired by those of Saint-Pierre in Rome, were installed between 1835 and 1840 at the request of King Louis Philippe. The maritime fountain on the side of the Seine and the Fluvial fountain on the rue Royale side. The Tuileries Garden extends from the Louvre Palace (east) to the Place de la Concorde (west), it is bordered to the north by the rue de Rivoli, the Place des Pyramides and to the south by the Seine river. The Arc du Carrousel, built in 1806 in the Carrousel garden, marks the entrance to the Tuileries garden. The Tuileries Palace which closed the Louvre on its west side was burnt down during the Commune(communists later use this word) of Paris in 1871 and its ruins were razed in 1881 by the city of Paris under the Third Republic. The rue Royale begins at Place de la Concorde and ends in front of the Madeleine Church. This road was originally called rue Royale des Tuileries. The current layout of the avenue des Champs Elysées was completed in 1724, and extended the perspective of the Tuileries garden. its name comes from the place of the underworld where virtuous souls stayed in Greek mythology. Between 1766 and 1775 is erected on the Place de la Concorde, two palaces with monumental facades separated by the rue Royale. In line with the Perrault colonnade in the Louvre. Hôtel de Crillon – Hôtel Pastoret – Hôtel de Coislin and Hôtel de la Marine. The Luxor Obelisk was erected in 1836 at the initiative of the King of the French Louis-Philippe in the center of the square. It is a pink granite obelisk, dating from the 12C BC, offered to King Charles X by Mehemet Ali, Viceroy and Pasha of Egypt. The monument, weighing 230 tons and measuring 23 meters in height , was originally located in the Temple of Thebes (Luxor). another obelisk which was the pendant of the entrance to the Tuileries Palace is still there, it is covered with hieroglyphics. The Pont de Concorde bridge, 153 meters long and 35 meters wide, was built between 1787 and 1791.


paris pl de la concorde fountain to crillon nov19


paris-pl-de-la-concorde-obelisk far feb14

Eight statues are placed on the corner sentry boxes: They represent eight French towns. Lyon and Marseille   by Jean-Pierre Cortot, Lille and Strasbourg by James Pradier, Lyon and Marseille by Pierre Petitot and Bordeaux and Nantes by Louis-Denis Caillouette. The seated figures represent: the Rhine, the Rhône rivers and the Harvests of Grapes and Wheat, as well as the Mediterranean, the Ocean and Fishing.

Paris pl de la concorde brest statue nov11

paris pl de la concorde crillon and marine nov19

Following the French revolution of 1789, it became the epicenter of the turmoil. The statue of Louis XV was brought down in 1792, and replaced by Liberty, a goddess draped in Roman style, wearing a Phrygian cap, who firmly holds her sceptre. King Louis XVI was guillotined on January 21, 1793 as were Queen Marie-Antoinette, the Girondins, Danton, Mme Roland, Robespierre and many others. During the reign of Terror, 1119 people died there. Under the Directory, Lucien Bonaparte removes the remains of the guillotine and the Statue of Liberty. Under the Restoration king Charles X plans to place a statue of his brother Louis XVI in its center but did not succeeded, the square was briefly named.

The Paris tourist office on the Place de la Concorde

The Ïle de France region tourist office on Paris monuments and museums:

So now feel better fully describe this gem of my eternal Paris, you can see the previous post on it dated Nov 9 2019. And hope you enjoy the tour of the wonderful Place de la Concorde in Paris, of course.

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

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September 28, 2020

Paris and an arch!!!

So here again at you with some new found photos from my vault and of course will try to provide more information on the text. I have done posts before on the Arc de Triomphe but as usual always leave things out. It’s a habit of rushing my amateur writings, and know can always come back for more.

The Arc de Triomphe is located on Place Charles de Gaulle which was previously called Place de l’Etoile from where 12 major avenues, among the most exclusive in Paris, depart. Clockwise, you will find the avenue Marceau, avenue d’Iéna, avenue Kléber, avenue Victor Hugo, avenue Foch (my favorite entry!) , avenue de la Grande Armée, avenue Carnot, avenue Mac-Mahon, avenue de Wagram, avenue Hoche, avenue de Friedland and finally avenue des Champs Élysées.


The Arc de Triomphe is one of the most emblematic monuments in Paris. Measuring 50 meters high, 22 meters wide and 45 meters long, the Arc de Triomphe is the symbol of the victories of the French army under Napoleon’s Empire. The attic or upper part of the Arc, crowned with 30 shields on which are engraved the names of great battles of the revolution and the empire. The battles you will find on the interior faces of the large arcades. The 558 French generals, some of whom died in action, their names are underlined.

paris arc de triomphe conrer of Iena et Marceau sep16

Some emblematic ones me think are the departure of the Volunteers in 1792, also called the Marseillaise, represents the French people in all their diversity from revolutionaries (Republicans), Royalists and Bonapartists going together to fight. An iconic work of the French Republic erected under king of the French, Louis Philippe, in 1833. At the foot of the Arc de Triomphe, you can discover the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, a monument erected in 1921 with a flame that never goes out, called the eternal flame. This symbol represents all the French who died during WWI or as we know it here, the Great War, who could never be identified.

It was Napoleon who decided to build it in 1806 at the end of the Battle of Austerlitz and the arch was completed during the reign of Louis-Philippe. Before the expansion of Paris in 1860, the land on which the monument was built was on the border of the city, and offered privileged access to the Emperor’s residence, the former Palais des Tuileries, via the Champs-Élysées.

The panoramic view from the roof of the Arc de Triomphe is equally impressive. From above, you can admire the dynamism that animates the city by observing the twelve main arteries meeting at this point. The ascent to the Arc de Triomphe will give you beautiful views of the Champs-Elysées and the La Défense district. The climb is worth it. To enter and access the upper floor of the arch, you will need to pay the entrance fee and climb the 286 steps that separate the terrace from the ground. There is also a small museum inside, relating the history and construction of this imposing monument.

The official Arc de Triomphe

The Paris tourist office on the Arc de Triomphe

You will be delighted with the history and the wonderful architecture but the views oh the views are gorgeous of my eternal Paris. Hope you enjoy the updated post on the Arc de Triomphe.

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

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September 28, 2020

Paris, again Sacré Coeur!!!

Oh yes again Sacré Coeur Basilica of Montmartre!! Quickly, I have written before ,but I could dedicated several volumes in a book on it; a must to see in Paris and a lot more than its religious meaning, the force and strenght of the people of Paris, France are in it. A better place to understand my belle France.

What can I say about Sacre Coeur, it is a very popular Basilica Church of Paris. I have written before so will just give some new text and new photos even if older from my vault .

Again, one of the must see and must stop on your way to Paris. The historical center of a wonderful district ,a city in its right call Montmartre.   The hill of martyrs as in English, no heroes of any sort, but those earlier Christians who gave it all for the faith. Here Saint Denis was beheaded by pagans lords, but He continue to preach all the way to Saint Denis where now is his Basilica de Saint Denis; it all begun at Montmartre. It was completed in 1910 and was consecrated in 1919. The Sacré-Cœur Basilica is 100 meters long and 50 meters wide surmounted by a dome 83 meters high. The 84 meters high campanile houses a bell weighing 18.5 tons with its 850 kg clapper. The construction of this Roman-Byzantine style basilica dedicated to the Sacred Heart was declared of public utility by the National Assembly of France in 1873. Its construction began in 1876 on the plans of architect Abadie largely inspired by the Church of St Front in Périgueux of which he was the restorer. The interior contains decorative treasures: marble sculptures, stained glass windows and mosaics. The hill of Montmartre is the highest point of Paris with its 130 meters in height. From the square of the basilica there is a beautiful panoramic view of Paris!!

paris sacre coeur up jul10

A bit of history that I like

In 1870, the people of Paris were under siege after the defeat of Napoleon III against the Prussians and allies at Sedan. The Parisians were starving and even go so far as to kill the animals of the zoo for food. It follows the capitulation of Napoleon III and the bloody episode of the great commune of Paris. Catholics regard these terrible events as a punishment from God. The faithful then meet and organize huge faith processions, promising to erect a monument to the glory of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. The Archbishop of Paris, Monsignor Guibert, sends a letter to the Minister of Cultes or worship asking him to support this project which would contribute to the divine protection of Paris. In order for the protection to be effective and visible to all, it was decided to build the monument on a hill. Monsignor Guibert would have had a divine vision when he visited the Butte Montmartre which gave him a sunny view of Paris. To decide on the choice of architect, a competition is organized under the chairmanship of Charles Garnier, the father architect of the Opéra. He chose Paul Abadie .The construction began in 1875.To carry out this expensive project, it was called for donations and it was the Parisians themselves who financed the Basilica by buying 1 to 3 stones, the prices of which varied between 120 and 500 francs. The Sacré-Coeur is a private monument, property of the Archdiocese of Paris, and not a building of the French State!!!

To access the Holy of Holies, you must first climb 237 steps but it is worth it: a breathtaking view of our Paris awaits you. Fortunately, since 1901 a cable car or funicular has provided easier access to the Holy Grail.  An anecdote: In April 1944 (WWII) 13 bombs exploded on the Sacré Coeur without causing any casualties, a miracle.

The huge gorgeous mosaic of the Choir represents “The Triumph of the Sacred Heart of Jesus”. With a total area of 475m2, it is one of the largest in the world. The Choir of the Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Montmartre and its Carrara marble altarpiece ,the Choir is closed by eleven Romanesque arcades, strangely extended upwards.

Paris sacre coeur dome altar aug11

Hugely wonderful awesome ,gorgeous again need to see it. I have several times and always looking forward for more. Let me give some webpages to help you plan your visit from afar

The official webpage of the Sacré Coeur Basilica in English:

The Montmartre tourist office in English:

The Paris tourist office in English:

And the Paris Catholic Diocese on the Sacré Coeur Basilica in French:

There you go folks, a work of art, a wonderful place to visit my beautiful capital of France, eternal Paris. It will be worth your time and effort, the Sacré Coeur Basilica was done by citizens for all of us. Hope you enjoy it

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

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September 27, 2020

Paris at the Place du Tertre!!

So here i am staying in Paris and continue finding new photos of older days in the beautiful city. I have many posts on Paris, many… but have ,also many photos some not shown yet. I used to worked in it and lived next door so Paris was like my backyard. Still was until the virus…. Looking forward to be back.

In the meantime, let me show some new text and photos of a very very popular place, the Place du Tertre square in Montmartre.

As any visitor/tourist would attest, coming here is like a pilgrimage while in Paris. I admit came here for the glamour in the travel books as my French family was not taken none of this. However, just for the bragging rights I came, back in 1991!

It immediately struck as an overpopulated square loaded with visitor/tourists walking around and so popular! Many cheap portraits made in China but signed by locals! indeed. It was a one time impression and I believe been back maybe once after that. Montmartre has better places to be, but if you are here for only a visit or is your first time then do come if simply for the bragging rights! I was here!

paris pl du tertre montmartre jan20

This artists square is divided into 149 locations of 1m² where everyone gives free rein to their talent. The place is once again at the heart of the history of Paris at the end of the 19C. At the end of the siege of Paris, part of the 171 guns were stored on the mound. On March 18, 1871, it was an attempt to withdraw these cannons that sparked a major riot, heralding the Paris Commune!

This square is served by the metro stations Abbesses (line 12) and Anvers (line 2), as well as by the Montmartrobus. I have come and parked at the parking Anvers 500 meters from Sacre-Coeur at 41 boulevard de Rochechouart.

A bit of history I like

We are in the Middle Ages. Let’s say without seeking too much precision, in the 12C. A few houses were built, especially a little lower, towards the current place Jean-Baptiste Clément which was then the center of the village, its main square (then called Place du Palais) . Later, probably in the 14C, the land (which is not yet a square) is bordered on the east side by a thick wall which forms part of the Abbey enclosure. In the center of the square which extends at its feet, the abbesses who possessed the right of justice had installed forks and gallows. The square did not have its current appearance and three houses were built in its center. They were destroyed in the middle of the 19C and it was not until 1921 that the city bought back the private part of the central square. The name Place du Tertre which obviously alludes to its location at the top of the hill only appears late, in the 19C. It almost disappeared when a decree of 1867, a year after the annexation of Montmartre to Paris, had provided for its abolition in order to widen the rue Norvins. Luckily, the project was abandoned!

A bit of nostalgia me think. At number 3 Place du Tertre which apparently opens onto Place Jean Marais (formerly Place de l’Eglise) to extend at a right angle and form the east side of Place du Tertre. It bears the same plaque in two very different places indicating that the first city/town hall of Montmartre was established there in 1790.

The No 17 Place du Tertre is of course a restaurant! It is Chez Eugène (my first meal there! 1991). If artists have performed there, we do not see what the official site is referring to when it tells us that it inspired the famous Jacques Brel chorus! There is indeed a restaurant at Eugène’s in the song “Madeleine” by Brel, but you have to take tram 33 to get there because it is in Brussels!

paris chez eugene fam 1995

At No 6 Place du Tertre ,you will find the famous Mère Catherine. Before the Revolution, there was the presbytery where the parish priest lived as the church St Pierre was divided into two parts , one “St Denis” reserved for nuns, the other “St Pierre” for the villagers.

With the Revolution and the confiscation of religious property, the house was sold and bought by Catherine Lamotte who turned it into a café-restaurant. One of the clients at the time was none other than Danton! After the death of Mother Catherine, there will be other owners including the second mayor of Montmartre Mr. Lemoine who installed a wooden billiard table, which was very successful, and earned him the nickname “Father of billiards”. For many years the place has lost its soul and has become a tourist trap!yes. The poor victims imagine when they enter that they will consume delicious traditional cuisine in an authentic place! The restaurant claims that the word “bistro” was born here!

The restaurant claims that the word “bistro” was born here when, after Napoleon’s defeat, the Cossacks who came to occupy Paris were served there drinks and to hasten the service shouted “bistro bistro” which phonetically and approximately means in Russian “quick quick”. The thing is disputed and questionable but it is part of the Montmartre legend made of gaffes and stories mixed with the truth!

The Paris tourist office on the Place du Tertre :

A wonderful local webpage Montmartre Guide on tourism and information on Montmartre, on the Place du Tertre:

And now you have a bit more on another monument of Paris. Yes even more touristic today but as said, one needs to see it at least once. And you are in Paris, well Montmartre as the locals would tell you ::) Enjoy the visit to the Place du Tertre

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

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September 27, 2020

Paris and the Army Museum!

Well here I am back at you with gorgeous beautiful awesome Paris. Of course in the Ïle de France region dept and city no 75 and in my belle France. And again, I must repeat, written on some of it before, but this is new text and photo even if older dated.

I can sometime get carry away from the excitement of visitors/expats etc and just recount the main monuments or places to see in Paris. However, there are always little things that are overlook and I for one lover of architecture and history look for it, even if it takes me a second or third post ::)

This is the case of a huge complex better known as the Invalides but I like even more the Army museum or Musée de l’Armée. And this one will like to tell you a bit more now. Hope you enjoy it.

The Musée de l’Armée is located in the Hôtel National des Invalides in the 7éme arrondissement or district of Paris. The Musée de l’Armée is a history museum whose vocation is to present the history of conflicts through the prism of the military history of France. Access is now only via 129 rue de Grenelle as long as sanitary conditions require it. This museum is served by the Invalides metro lines 8 and 13, Varenne line 13 ,and La Tour-Maubourg line 8. Also RER C invalides, and Bus lines my favorites as there are others are lines  28, 82, 87, 92 and 93.

Paris mus armee entr mar13

The museum was created in 1905 by the merger of the Artillery Museum and the Army Historical Museum, both of which were already located in the Hôtel des Invalides. At the time, the collections were then installed and divided into two sections: The Arms and Armor Section, which included the Joffre Gallery (fortifications and trenches), the Kléber room (oriental collections), the Massena room (infantry), the Richelieu room (luxury weapons), the Douay room (colonial infantry and armaments foreigners), the Murat room (cavalry), the Margueritte room (African cavalry, artillery and harness), the Gribeauval room (artillery), the Pétain gallery (Souvenirs of the Great War, flags taken from the Germans) and the Foch gallery (memories of the allied armies). And the Historical Section, which included the Turenne room or “flag room” (there were over 700 flags or banners); the Bugeaud room (Detailed collection: paintings, military costumes, weapons), the Louis XIV room (costumes and souvenirs from the former monarchy), the Napoleon room, the La Fayette room, the Aumale room (colonial campaigns), the Mac Mahon room (wars from 1825 to 1870), Chanzy room (1870 to 1914), medals room, Charlemagne room (collection of Greek and Roman uniforms and of the Gauls), Assas room, La Tour d’Auvergne room.

paris mus armee canons et eiffel mar13

There has been a huge program of renovation that is known by the words ATHENA since 1994, the museum underwent various arrangements . Other museums too such as The historial Charles-de-Gaulle, the Museum of the Order of the Liberation has been completely rehabilitated a new permanent section within the museum, the Cabinets Unusual, devoted in a first part to military figurines and artillery models: one of the most important collections in the world and in another part to military musical instruments. The army museum occupies the east and west wings around the courtyard of the Invalides as well as a wing to the west of the Saint-Louis Church and the historial de Charles de Gaulle, an underground construction under the courtyard of values.

The Musée de l’Armée or Army museum joined the Fondation Napoléon to renovate the tomb of Napoleon I in the Invalides, as well as those of his brothers buried near the Emperor, under the famous dome. All looking forward in 2021 for a  “Napoleon season”, with exhibitions and concerts, to celebrate the bicentennial of his death, in 1821, in St. Helena. The famous sarcophagus of the Emperor, in red quartzite, is rather well preserved but this is not the case of the soils that support it. The stone, enamel and marble marquetry soils were damaged by time and the stone falls from the dome. Therefore, an appeal for donations has started, because all you see in Paris takes money to keep for you, and you can help too. More info on the above from the official family Fondation Napoléon here:

Further renovations are in orders such as by 2024, the reception areas and temporary exhibitions will be reconfigured with the creation of places dedicated to the history of the site, as well as the news of French military engagements; while a new reserve building will be built in the suburbs. The second part will start in 2025 and will concern the creation of two new courses devoted to the history of colonization and decolonization from the 16C to the 1960s, as well as to the military history of the post-1945 period and to the Cold War until the period following the fall of the Iron Curtain.

So keep an eye for them, they will make for a whole new experience of visiting Paris and the Army museum! Some webpages to help you plan your trip are

Official Army museum in English

The Paris tourist office on the Army museum in English:

And now there you go folks, ready for it as I am. Looking forward to revisit this wonderful place ,where I spent many of my time in Paris in and out and about it. Hope you enjoy the post on the Army Museum alone!

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

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September 26, 2020

My travels in the Morbihan, LXXIX.

Ok so today started out cloudy then turn out sunny and now back to cloudy so much for the weather in my Morbihan dept 56 and time for another episode of My Travels in the Morbihan.

I am in my 79th episode of this post and really like it to tell miscellaneus events at or near me. Oh for the newbies Morbihan is dept 56 of the region of Bretagne, in my belle France. It is the department, province or state where I live.

The temperature right now is 15C and by the time I go to bed will be 7C.  OR 57F and should be around 45F when I go to bed tonight. We did some road warrior today , hoping for better weather to cut the grass and spray some grass weeder, so should be ok for tomorrow.

We started out by stopping at our local supermarket Super U to get some household items, not all available. So we continue to the hypermarket Carrefour in Vannes, and the rest.

We stopped along the way in several places looking for prices on GPS attachement for my son Yamaha scooter, first was Norauto a car parts store chain in Vannes, then Morbihan Moto where purchase his bike, then Feu Vert in Auray , another car parts store chain. As well as the above ,so now he has a good idea of the prices! Shopping around is a must….

We did stop by E Leclerc  in Vannes, as today is the start of their wine faire or foire aux vins ,held in a special tent in the parking lot, and we load up again…. about two cases worth of red, rose and whites. The folks were out and it was great as usual. See my previous post on the wine fairs going on now in my belle France.

vannes leclerc foire aux vins et XF 26sep20

On the way back home, we stopped by V&B in Auray for our beers as soon will be Octoberfest, celebrated here not as big as USA or Germany for that matter but plenty to go around with Paulaners and Krombachers!!! We got about 40 bottles lol!!!

auray V and B beers octoberfest sep20

And , already do not recall if was going out or coming back, but we passed by Sainte Anne d’Auray where the basilica of Sainte Anne is, to get around the town and saw by Pont er Groah nice housing type windmills way back in the sanctuary that is actually an open air theater!! not recall seen them before. So here they are!   The open air Theater in the Basilica de Sainte-Anne d’Auray shows a 2 hours huge spectacle with more than 200 actors and figures in costumes of the times with farm animals, carts, and carriages in the recontructed village of Ker Anna of the 16C recounting the apparitions of Sainte-Anne (the mother of the Virgin Mary and grandmother of Jesus) to a humble Breton farmer Yvon Nicolazic.

ste anne d auray windmill back basilica sep20

ste anne d auray pont stream back of basilica sep20

Finally,home, got us some rabbit in mustard sauce with rice , tomatoes, and the wonderful wines we purchase at great prices from Bordeaux! and some peaches from the market, chocolates, and water to finish off. And ,sitting in my computer writing this post!

In all another mundane day in the Morbihan. More important and sad for us as it is my dear late wife Martine , birthday!!! Happy Bday my mamie blue we will never forget you!!! RIP

And we are waiting for the night programming with the boys. Hope you have a great day and thanks for reading my posts, really thank you.

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

September 26, 2020

Paris, a bourse of arts!!!

Ok so why not stay in wonderful beautiful gorgeous Paris. A showcase of my belle France and on the Ïle de France region , both no 75 city and department. Again, I am finding new photos and updating old posts with new text.

I have written a couple post on the Bourse de Commerce. However, that is mostly was old history, the place is getting a revolutionary new look and only delayed by the virus , now expected to open in Spring 2021. Let me tell you a bit more on the Bourse de Commerce or better then will be the bourse d’arts ::)

I like to bring you to light another wonderful building in Paris seldom seen yet I know it well in business and very few pictures allow.  The Bourse de Commerce de Paris is a circular plan building topped by a dome located on Rue de Viarmes, in the neighborhood of the Halles of the 1éme arrondissement or district of Paris.  The monumental entrance opens with a portico, located to the west of the building facing the Rue du Colonel-Driant, summoned by a pediment carried by four fluted Corinthian columns, which surmount three allegorical figures, representing the city of Paris flanked by Abundance and Trade.

The Bourse de Commerce is a new presentation site for the Pinault Collection, in Paris. Dedicated to contemporary art seen through the prism of the collection, it will presents thematic hangings and monographic exhibitions, but also new productions, commissions, carte blanche and in situ projects. Open to all audiences and to all artistic disciplines, the Bourse de Commerce offers educational programs, conferences and meetings, screenings and concerts, and performances.  Again, postponned and now again schedule opening to the public for spring 2021.

paris bourse de commerce from halles nov19

This monumental and architecturally listed building will house a program of exhibitions designed from a collection of more than 5,000 works. Among the artists in the spotlight: Charles Ray, Damien Hirst, Jeff Koons, Marlene Dumas, Tatiana Found, Julie Mehretu, Philippe Parreno or Martial Raysse, for the headliners, but also many artists from generations, cultures and practices very diverse, and in a spectacular location to say the least.

Located halfway between the Pyramide du Louvre and the Centre Pompidou, this majestic circular building, dating from the 16C with the famous Medici column, where Nostradamus went to make his observations of the stars, then rehabilitated in the 18-19C , has not only been scrupulously restored up to the 19C aerial mounted canvas, “the panorama of commerce” representing an allegory of the world and of exchanges between all the continents, but revisited and projected into our time by one of the great masters of world architecture and traveling companion of François Pinault for all of his museums.

This flagship of Parisian heritage of 13,000 square meters will have been released to the public, offering 2,800 square meters of exhibition divided into seven different spaces, from the most monumental of 600 m2 to the most intimate 250 m2, and of varying heights far from the standardization of white cubes of contemporary art , to which are added a 300 seat auditorium and a black box, a place specially designed for multimedia installations and experimental projects. They will be deployed around the heart of the project, with a famous 9 meters high concrete cylinder, a rotunda entwined by a poetic staircase that stands in the center of the circle formed by the metal dome of the building that is dated from 1810-1812 , the first in France at the top of the building, the visitor will find a belvedere, offering a bird’s eye view on one side of Paris, on the other, of the rotunda, as well as “La Halle aux grains”, the restaurant of 120 places managed by Michel and Sébastien Bras.

Stay tune , it will be awesome as anything in my beautiful Paris! Hope you enjoy the post and keep an eye open for the grand opening in 2021.

Some webpages to help you plan and updated are

The Bourse de Commerce, Pinault foundation

The Paris tourist office on the Bourse de  Commerce, Pinault Foundation:

Another wonderful building in my eternal Paris. The Bourse de Commerce will be invaded by the arts in 2021.

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

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September 26, 2020

Paris, and around the Hôtel de Ville!!!

Always looking for my photos, I have to tell you is not an easy task when I have overlooked a lot of them and now trying to find them! I did came up with one on the Hôtel de Ville of Paris and will tell you a bit more on this spot. Of course, will cut short the text as already plenty written on it.

The bus line 72 have taken a few times and took the picture while passing the Hôtel de Ville of Paris. The line runs from the Parc de Saint-Cloud to the Gare de Lyon. It has nice bus connection with the line 82 at Pont d’Iéna , bus 85 at Châtelet and bus 96 at the Hôtel de Ville. The bus line 72 has stops in very popular places in Paris and is an ideal bus to take above ground to see more of the grandeur of Paris. The popular stops I can remark are at Pont d’Iéna, Pont de Bir-Hakeim, Palais de Tokyo, Alma-Marceau, Grand Palais, Concorde, Pont de Solférino, Pont Royal , Pont des Arts , Pont Neuf-Quai du Louvre, Palais-Royal, Pont Louis-Philippe ,Pont Marie, Pont d´Austerlitz, and the line start in Paris proper at Porte de Saint Cloud and ends at Gare de Lyon. The RATP line is shown here :

It is a great way to see Paris when your legs are a bit tired of the wonderful walks, much prefer above ground, and see Paris more.

Paris hotel de ville bus 72 sep12

Here if you wish but will tell you the bus ride is better , you can come in on metro line 1 and 11 going up the stairs you have sortie or exit no 5 to Hôtel de Ville or exit 2 Rue de Renard to Centre Georges Pompidou as most often taken here. I have it on line 1 but you can see all the lines here:

A bit of the history I like on this area

The quai de l’Hotel-de-Ville , where bus line 72 passes, is a quay located along the Seine river, in the Saint Gervais and Saint Merri neighborhood or quartiers of the 4éme district or arrondissement of Paris The quai de l’Hotel-de-Ville, has a length of 535 meters and 24 to 32 meters of width , and begins at the Pont Marie and rue des Nonnains-d’Hyères and ends at the Place de l’Hotel-de-Ville – Esplanade de la Liberation.

In 1254, it was a path that bordered the Seine. It was called the chemin aux Merrains, or rue aux Merrains, to the lumber merchants. From the 15C, the city laws or   acts designated it under the name of quai de la Grève, or quai de Grève. Gréve means strike on a level square, covered with gravel, on the river. Before the Place de Grève, today Place de l’Hotel-de-Ville – Esplanade de la Liberation, was raised and the quay was paved. The Quai de l’Hotel-de-Ville was created in 1867-1868 from the merger of the part of the Quai des Ormes located between the rue des Nonnains-d’Hyères and the rue Geoffroy-l’Asnier with the part of the quai de Gréves located between this last street and the Pont d’Arcole bridge.

At the corner with rue de Lobau: homage to the Nueve. On the jardin des Combattants (see post) in memory to the Spanish republicans who fought along the French resistance against nazi Germany and did entered Paris first with Leclerc division!

At the square you will find an equestrian statue of Etienne Marcel ,exactly at 94 quai de l’Hotel-de-Ville. This bronze statue of Etienne Marcel, provost of merchants from 1354 to 1358, inaugurated in 1888. Symbol of the revolt of the Parisian bourgeoisie against the monarchy, it is wearing a chaperone in the colors of red and blue of Paris, a rallying sign of his supporters. He brandished the parchment of the Great Order of the Reformed of 1357. Etienne Marcel was assassinated on July 31, 1358, near the Porte Sainte-Antoine.

The Pont d’Arcole bridge, (see post) has 80 meters long and 20 meters wide, was built in 1854 as a single arch. It is the first bridge without support on the Seine entirely made of iron and no longer of cast iron. The bridge connects the Quai de Grèves, the Quai de l’Hotel de Ville and the Place de l’Hotel de Ville on the right bank to the Quai de la Corse and the Quai aux Fleurs on the Île de la Cité.

Paris pont d' arcole left hotel de ville et hotel-dieu back jul10

There you go folks another dandy anecdote of beautiful Paris and my rounds around the city. As said ,tried all modes of transports, the best in the city is walking but if tired take the bus. Hope you enjoy the post.

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

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September 25, 2020

El Rancho ,and my family!

So here is one from deep within the vaults of photos, and a nice story for us,which I hope you like it too. Having an international touch, we taste many foods from many countries and one of our favorites is the Tex Mex type. In France, they are still learning this cuisine but more and more coming around.

We first met it here at El Rancho restaurant chain in Versailles, and then there is history. I like to tell you about El Rancho and my family!

As said, we were surprise to find El Rancho right next to the rive gauche château of Versailles train station REC C. So of course, we went in and was a fund family affair, and memories of our previous lives in America.  We left Versailles for the Morbihan Breton and just a year later came back looking forward to eat here again, when we saw the restaurant all board up and closed! We thought that was the end of El Rancho, but no they are survivals. At the Versailles location there is now a KFC franchise restaurant which we have not tried.

versailles El Rancho old with martine noel xavier aug11

However , before that we visited two other restaurants of the chain one closed and one still open!

Located in the large Velizy 2 shopping center in Vélizy-Villacoublay ,was a perfect match for shopping and continuing the tex mex tradition of ours. the  El Rancho tex mex restaurant here we, also,  had some fun family times there and remember it well, just for the memories that will never go away, this post is dedicated to all families. The shopping center thus is still there and now has the new owner of most of the El Rancho under their new banner Old Wild West restaurant :

Velizy II El Rancho 26sep2009

And there was another one we went at Flins sur Seine, where on an open shopping center the El Rancho tex mex restaurant stand alone. This was the last one open,and bizarre it is still open at the ZAC Les Mériels road D14  right off the A13 autoroute de Normandie!!!

Overall, our experiences were the same in all three. First of all, the welcome, the smiling and really friendly service. Inside, there is a tex mex -Mexican atmosphere, it’s clean, colorful, not too noisy despite the many families present, and the 15 ° air conditioning will delight American tourists and some locals too ::). The menu offers tex mex -Mexican-inspired cuisine based on fatty plates or junk food, fried foods, guacamole and melted cheese, if you are on a diet, go away!. Well, anyway, the food arrives with impressive speed. El Rancho remains good value for money, surroundings, ambiance and hospitality. In short, a good plan that will also make children happy. The small lounge area on entering is nice for a drink at any time of the day. The Flins sur Seine restaurant is here:

Flins ins El Rancho resto pipo RF MF NF jul12

El Rancho is the first chain of Tex-Mex restaurants in France to offer Mexican specialties opening their first restaurant in 1992, in Melun (Seine et Marne dept 77), and has since rose to 28 restaurants in different regions. For its part, the El Rancho SA group, which still owns the El Rancho brand, which still covers two franchised restaurants and one of its own, has begun an overhaul of the concept.

The other properties most were taken over by the multi-brand Italian group Cigierre (Compagnia Generale Ristorazione S.p.A.) founded in 1995, and confirms its ambitions on the French market. With 307 establishments on the counter in Italy ,last I could count, under 5 brands :Old Wild West; typed steak house, burger and Tex-Mex, Wiener Haus ;German brasserie, Shi’s; for sushi, Pizzikotto ;for the pizzeria and American Graffiti ;for the Diner’s. Which already have experience with Wiener Haus in Rome Italy and very good too ::) Their webpage is here for info.

Therefore, this post is on El Rancho tex mex restaurants is for the memories of always, fun , happy family times in our belle France. The properties of course are in my old home of Yvelines dept 78, Ïle de France region. Now feel better to have the story in my blog. Hope you too have enjoy it and do try it!

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

September 25, 2020

Pluvigner, my St Guigner Church!!!

There, again, this is a must for us in town, we have been inside several times and past by it zillions times yet only briefly mentioned in previous posts in my blog. Therefore, after some exchanges with a fellow blogger , its time for me to tell you more about the St Guigner Church and Saint Guigner in Pluvigner.

First, my town of Pluvigner (French) is Breton language by the name of Pleuwigner.  The name comes from the Breton PLOE meaning Parish and GUIGNER , the Saint; therefore, the Parish of St Guigner or PLEUWIGNER or PLUVIGNER! Get it ! We do more than French here!!! A bit more,the parish of Pluvigner is known as of 1259 under the name of PLE GUINNER , in 1325 under PLEU VIGNER,  in 1387 as PLOEVIGNEr ; in 1405 as PLOUIGNER ; in 1428 as PLUVIGNER;  in 1453 as PLEVIGNER ; in 1516 as PLOEGNER ;in 1636 as PLEVIGNER!!!

The story of Pluvigner begins in the 5C with the installation at a place called “Le Moustoir” of Guigner, son of an Irish king named Clyton. Saint Patrick converts him to Christianity despite opposition from his parents. Driven by his father, Guigner he left for Armorica (now Brittany) where King Audren offered him a site to establish his hermitage. On the death of his father, King of Ireland, he went to his native country. Guigner, still nicknamed Prince Fingar, had his head cut off in the year 455 by a man named Hengist, king of the Angles on orders of Prince Théodoric.

Pluvigner had its patron saint as Saint Guigner, under whose name was placed its parish church. Hibernois of origin and son of a small king still peasant, this saint had embraced the Christian religion. To escape the persecution of his own father, he came with several new converts to spend a few years in  the Armorican Cornwall (Cornouaille). Back in his homeland, he renounced the throne left vacant by the death of his father he went to Great Britain, to work there for the conversion of the Saxons who had invaded this country: Barely landed, circa 455 , he was put to death, with all his companions as above. Fleeing the Saxons, a band of Christians who lived in the neighborhood where these martyrs had plucked their palms; and taking with it the body of Saint Guigner, crossed the sea, and came to settle, in the territory of the ancient Vénètes (Celtic tribe who gave the name to our capital city Vannes) in an almost deserted canton, and was distinguished from other similar bands, by taking the name of Plou de Guigner or parish of Guigner, from which came naturally, later, that of Pluvigner, given to the parish formed, by these emigrants.

The highlight of the town of Pluvigner, is the Church of Saint Guigner in city center, our main Church. There was a chapel next door called the Notre Dame des Oties b 1426, touches the parish church and communicates with her through the sacristy. It has the form of a Latin cross; The transepts are shallow and seem older than the rest of the monument. The choir is square; On each side, two arched arcades, now clogged, imply the primitive existence of two collateral. The square of the transept is separated from the nave by three arches, one large and two small, in warhead, worn on polygonal pillars. The windows are ogival, and the fire and tri lobed mullions. It is now ruins of arches left of the main Church of Saint Guigner. The Saint-Guigner parish church is a central element in the rich religious and cultural landscape of the town. The organ of the Church of Saint Guigner is a masterful work of 9 meters high and 15 meters wide made up of no less than 3,000 pipes!




The parish church is dedicated to St Guigner whose relics are carried in procession. The Saint is accompanied by an angel wearing an ermine coat of arms. The lintel of the south door shows a group of Crucifixions, made up of Christ surrounded by the Virgin and Saint John. The St Guigner Church contains the relics of Saint Guigner and houses a statue of Saint Guigner. The painting entitled “Assumption”, dates from 1770. The painting “Donation of the Rosary”; dates from the very beginning of the 20C.




Vast church dating from 1545, retouched in 1781 on the bell tower, and restored in 1883. On the north side remains a Gothic door with the usual accolade, and on the south side a lintel with door frame. The windows are pointed, but their mullions have disappeared. A modern porch, a rectangular opening whose lintel is relieved by corbelets, shelters the south door. The carved lintel represents Christ on the Cross between Saint John and the Virgin. At both ends there is an interlacing around a circle. On each side of the column it has capitals. The Church of Saint Guigner houses the statues of Saint-Guigner, Saint-Michel, Saint-Vincent Ferrier and Notre-Dame de Bon Secours.


The tower and the bell tower which were built in 1781, were restored in the 19C. The frame and the sacristy cracked by lightning in 1841 were also restored at this time. In 1842, the construction of the transept arms gave the church its Latin cross shape.This church had stained glass windows from the 16C and it was done the same in the 19C. Some current elements come from the old window of the bedside: the oculus of the braces and the last windows of the nave shine with a vegetal carpet in shimmering colors borrowed from the main window of the church. The stained-glass windows of the 20C tell episodes from the lives of the holy figures honored by the parish with the apse bay presents a Crucifixion; in the choir, and reads the vocation of Saint Guenaël, and the preaching of Saint Goal; in the transept, the subject is the piety and charity of the penitent Kériolet; the nave presents the landing of Saint Guigner and his establishment at Moustoir.



More in French or Breton in our city page of Pluvigner here :

And our city/town hall (Ti Kêr in breton) of Pluvigner in Breton language:

The Bay of Quiberon tourist office only has it in French on Pluvigner

So, there you go my main church in town. It has been renovated several times over the years and the townfolks have given money to do so, the last was the Organ for 320K euros with private funds! Just enjoy it as we have come to do in our newer little corner of our world. This is the Saint Guigner Church in Pluvigner, in my beautiful Morbihan dept 56 of my lovely Bretagne, and my belle France!

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

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