Archive for April, 2023

April 30, 2023

Curiosities of France !! Part V

Looking at my house after some maintenance work saw many souvenirs of our trips in my belle France, and why not in my blog, After all this is my life and my family life’s history, This post allows me to show in my blog things collected over the years by my dear late wife Martine that still hangs and will forever in my house. Nostalgia sets in and here I go on my curiosities of France !! Part V, I will sneak one from London she bought even before marriage ! 1990 ! Hope you enjoy the post as I.

The town of Carcassonne is famous for its medieval citadel, La Cité, with its many watchtowers and double enclosure. The first walls were built in Gallo-Roman times, while the main additions were made in the 13-14C. The Château Comtal, which dates from the 12C offers archaeological exhibitions and a visit to the interior ramparts. This one is one purchase by my wife Martine before our marriage in 1990.


The Paris famous monuments such as the Notre Dame Cathedral, Louvre museum, Moulin Rouge cabaret , Place de la Concorde, Arc de Triomphe, and the Basilica Sacré Coeur or sacred heart, And many more, as Paris is eternal for all of us with many souvenirs of meeting there and visiting many times and both worked there !

Paris monuments

The yawning renaissance arcade of the Gros-Horloge of Rouen spans the cobbled street and houses one of the oldest clock mechanisms in Europe. Flanked by the belfry holding the town s bells, this magnificent, richly decorated time-piece with its extraordinary single-needle dials invites you inside to discover, a contemporary theatrical representation of the dial room and the clock keepers apartments. Extraordinary panorama over the city from the top.

Rouen gros horloge

Albertville is located in the Savoie department no. 73 in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region. The town is a “Porte-Cities” of the Massif des Bauges regional natural park, which in September 2011 obtained the international label supported by UNESCO, Geopark, thus becoming the 1st hunting reserve (wildlife) and 3rd Geopark in France .In 2014, the city of Albertville was awarded the “Competition of towns and villages in bloom” with three flowers, It organized the 1992 Winter Olympics, from February 8 to 23, 1992. This dish was purchase by my dear late wife Martine before our marriage in 1990, and she worked there !


The Sainte-Thérèse Basilica at Lisieux was done thanks to the fervor of the faithful from all over the world, one of the largest churches of the 20C was erected in Lisieux in honor of Saint Thérèse. The construction of the Basilica began in 1929. Its consecration took place on July 11, 1954. Pope John Paul II came there on pilgrimage on June 2, 1980. Its walls and those of the crypt are covered with mosaics which evoke the message of Saint Thérèse drawn from the Gospel. Inside is a reliquary that contains the bones of the Saint’s right arm. The crypt houses the relics of Saints Louis and Zélie Martin canonized on October 18, 2015 (parents of Saint Thérése), One of my sons’s went on school trip and we followed a year later, now been there couple times and very nice indeed.

Lisieux basilica sta teresa

The London different guard regiments on duty : The Grenadier Guards. The Coldstream Guards. The Scots Guards. The Irish Guards. And The Welsh Guards. The order in which regiments form up when on parade together is: Grenadiers on right flank, then the Welsh Guards, Scots Guards in the centre, the Irish Guards and the Coldstream Guards on the left flank. The boys asked me to go to London as told them of my business trips and we decided to spent our summer vacation there with the whole family, nice trip. London tourist office:

London monuments

The official France tourist office

There you go folks, a walk of nostalgia from my belle France. The curiosities of France part V, still rings many nice memories to my mind on each stretch of meter I take on it. These were some souvenirs taken by my dear late wife Martine and still hang in my house forever, Including her purchase of the London plate, Again, hope you enjoy the post as I.

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

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April 30, 2023

The Gare d’Austerlitz of Paris !

Again looking into my vault found me a corresponding picture sort of of the Gare d’Austerlitz and why not in my blog, This is one station never used in Paris but did went in to see friends passing and of course drove many times around it.  I like to have it as part of my memories of my eternal Paris. In so doing, maybe helpful to those transiting thru there in the future, Therefore, here is my take on the Gare d’Austerlitz of Paris ! Hope you enjoy the post as I

The train station Gare d’Austerlitz was name after a famous battle of Dec 2 1805 by Napoleon Ier. It is an open above ground station, behind the great glass enclosure of the train station, a work of art of 50 meters to raise the station over the Seine river, it is 280 meters long and 52 meters wide. It was first call Gare d’Orleans, and renamed in 1930 the Gare d’Orléans-Austerlitz. It was the heading station of the old line Compagnie Paris-Orleans (PO) that with 6 companies form the today SNCF from 1938. In 1985, it simply became the Gare d’Austerlitz.   The train station is located at 85 quai d’Austerlitz 13éme It is served by the following Metro lines: M5, M10, RER C ,regular RATP bus lines 245761638991 and 215 , Noctilien night bus lines N01, N02, N31, N131, N133, possible transfer Gare de Lyon and Montparnasse station, Also, trains of the Intercités, TER ,Ouigo classiques stop here.

The RER C line Pontoise ou Massy ou Dourdan ou Versailles ou Étampes ou St-Quentin-en-Yvelines, The metro line 5 Bobigny Pablo Picasso / Place d’Italie and metro line 10 Boulogne Pont de Saint-Cloud / Gare d’Austerlitz, The metro lines exits are 1 Boulevard de l’Hôpital La Pitié-Salpêtriére, exit 2 Rue Buffon/Jardin des Plantes, no 3 Rue Nicolas Houët, no 4 Museum (natural history) ; no 5 Quai d’Austerlitz, The wonderful Viaduc d’Austerlitz link the station with the metro, so big that when paris was besieged it was use to built zeppelins/ the viaduc was built from 1903-1904.  This taken on metro line 5 and wonderful views indeed.

paris metro line 5 over viaduc d austerlitz feb16

I like to give some historical facts as history I like

The Gare d’Austerlitz, formerly known as Gare d’Orléans, is one of six major SNCF terminus stations in Paris. Located on the edge of the Seine (left bank), in the Salpêtrière quartier or neighborhood no 49 of the 13éme arrondissement or district, and it is at the head of the “classic” lines which serve in particular Bordeaux-Saint-Jean, Toulouse-Matabiau (via Limoges-Bénédictins) and Nantes.

It is near the Quai d’Austerlitz and the Pont d’Austerlitz whose name recalls the Napoleonic victory of 1805. It was put into service on September 20, 1840, on the occasion of the opening of the Paris – Juvisy line, extended until Orléans in May 1843. A first expansion took place in 1846. The station was rebuilt from 1862 to 1867, In 1900, the Paris-Orléans company extended its line to the center of Paris, and the Gare d’Orsay became the new head of the line, service on May 28 1900 on the occasion of the Universal Exhibition. In 1906, the great hall of Austerlitz was literally pierced in its width by the passage of the metro line 5 in the extension of a viaduct crossing the Seine (see pic above). An elevated station is located in the hall above the tracks. In 1939, the Gare d’Orsay, which had become too cramped for national trains, and Gare d’Austerlitz then becomes a terminus station for mainline trains. Its access to the left bank was facilitated by the extension of metro line 10 from Jussieu, which opened on July 12, 1939.

The underground station opened in 1969. It is particularly noted for its modern decoration and the care given to passenger spaces. In 1980, the underground station accommodated the newly created RER C. Gare d’Austerlitz remained for a long time the main head of the lines for connections to the South-West of France, but the commissioning in 1990 of the LGV Atlantique, serving Gare Montparnasse, considerably weakened its main line activity. Between 2004 and 2006, the former building of the administration of the Orleans railways, which until then housed offices and a theater hall, the Valhubert theater, was sold by the SNCF and was subject to important work renovations. The original façade was retained, but the theater was demolished and the building completely rebuilt to accommodate modern offices. Since 2011, Avenue de France has run along the train tracks overlooking the station. However, the extensive renovation of the station, that started in 2011 and planned until 2025, should change the situation in the years to come and ensure an increase in traffic. Indeed, it has a significant capacity for expansion compared to the other Parisian train stations, which could be developed during the next decade and in particular with a view to the possible arrival of part of the TGV traffic, emanating among others from the LGV Paris Orléans Clermont-Ferrand Lyon project (LGV POCL) Heavy renovation work on the roof of the station and the hall is taking place from 2018 to 2024. Nearly 10,000 glass plates of the canopy must be replaced.

A bit of the description my best as said never use it, Two allegorical statues, draped in the antique style, due to Elias Robert and representing Agriculture and Industry decorate the facade, The surface station has 21 cul-de-sac tracks, those numbered 1 to 13 being under a concrete slab and those 14 to 21 under a glass roof, all assigned to main line trafic Paris – Toulouse axis via Limoges, and ,also, serving the greater suburbs and an underground station with four passageways assigned to the service of line C of the RER. The station has a “Cour Seine” entrance (have come in by here) , on the Quai de la Gare side, and a “Cour Museum” entrance, on the side of Boulevard de l’Hôpital. On leaving the station, the now partially covered bundle of tracks passes through the middle of the ZAC Rive Gauche and south of the National Library of France, with some tracks from the underground station joining this bundle through tunnels. The restaurant Le Grenadier was named in homage to the Battle of Austerlitz and was located on the first floor of the station, long threatened, was finally demolished in March 2012, along with the bar on the ground floor. There are currently no real restaurants in the station, sadly. The Salle des Pas Perdus or main hallway is adorned with two large acrylic panels on wood, painted in 1987 by Italian artist Valerio Adami, depicting Le Matin and Le Soir on the theme of Perseus’ Voyage.

The SNCF train lines on the Gare d’Austerlitz :

The TER Centre Val de Loire on the local trains at Gare d’Austerlitz :

The Transilien IDF region public transports on metro lines 5 and 10, and RER C :

The Paris tourist office on the Gare d’Austerlitz :

There you go folks, feel better telling about another wonderful building in my eternal Paris, The Gare d’Austerlitz completes nicely the panorama of train station in the City and offered nice walks around it indeed, Always good to walk Paris !! Again, hope you enjoy the post as I

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

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April 29, 2023

Curiosities of Paris, part VI

Looking at my vault, found some older pictures in of all places my old albums that I have just finished updating them with fresh pages to keep my photos longer in good shape ! . These were not yet in my blog and they should be !  Nostalgia sets in and here I go on the curiosities of Paris, Part VI. The pictures are from different years  but all from  before I came to live in France !! . I have added a brief description of the places,  but all have posts in my blog. Hope you enjoy these marvels of my eternal Paris !!!

The Church of the Madeleine is a pure masterpiece of neoclassical architecture, very fashionable in France in the 18C. It was built in response to the Palais Bourbon, located opposite, on the other side of the Seine and the Concorde. This district, newly attached to Paris in 1722 ,former suburb, named Ville l’Évêque, was undergoing rapid growth, which had to be ordered. The new church was thus part of a vast redevelopment plan for this part of the city, integrated into Place de la Concorde, Place Louis XV . The church we see today is the work of Pierre-Alexandre Vignon. He simply made a clean sweep of what had been built over decades, to build this temple of Greco-Roman inspiration, keeping only the columns. The church, located today in one of the most remarkable districts of Paris, is one of the most visible monuments of the city. Between the 8téme and 9éme arrondissements, at the end of rue Royale, Boulevard des Italiens and Boulevard Malesherbes, it is impossible to miss it. At the top of the 28 steps, you can feel the majesty of this peripteral temple with 52 Corinthian columns: 30 meters high, 108 meters long and 43 meters wide. The church was finally consecrated in 1845. Indeed, it is a Cavaillé- Coll, of which Camille Saint-Saëns himself was titular organist from 1857 to 1877! Today, the concerts of the Madeleine Church are still famous, people come from all over to attend them.

Paris ch de Madeleine night

The Paris tourist office on the Church de la Madeleine

At the heart of the Hôtel des Invalides, the Saint-Louis Cathedral bears witness to the importance given to faith by Louis XIV. The history of this building makes it possible to cross the ages in a grandiose setting. In 1676, the young architect Jules Hardouin-Mansart was commissioned to build a church on the Parisian site of Les Invalides. Dedicated to King Louis IX, canonized under the name of Saint Louis, and dedicated to the Holy Trinity, The classical-style church opened its doors to boarders in 1679. Under the vault of the soldiers’ church are banners with various effigies. They are war trophies, flags that have belonged to France’s enemies throughout history. Long seat of the general vicariate of the armies, the Saint-Louis des Invalides Church officially became the cathedral of the diocese of the French armies in 1986. As a result, despite the separation of church and state, the cathedral displays the national emblem between its walls. Today, masses continue to be celebrated in Saint-Louis Cathedral, which also hosts the concerts of the Invalides Musical Season.

Paris ch st louis invalides

The Paris tourist office on the Cathedral Saint Louis des Invalides

It is grand, intense, magical, impressive, atypical, geometric, there are no adjectives to describe the originality of this major architectural work of French heritage, erected as an extension of the historic axis of Paris. Its style, resolutely modern, testifies to its openness to the world. Inaugurated on July 14, 1989 during the bicentenary of the French Revolution and on the occasion of the G7, it was initially named “La Grande Arche de la Fraternité”. Offset by six and a half degrees , the same as that of the Louvre pyramid , it then offers a new perspective: that of a third dimension. Built like a bridge 110 meters high, resting on a frame of 12 pillars, La Grande Arche overlooks the Esplanade de la Défense and the city of Paris. Offering access to the Roof, the LA CITY restaurant is open Monday to Friday from 12h to 14h30, with a capacity of 70 seats. In the evening, the restaurant can be privatized for events.

Paris grande arche de la Defense parvis

The Paris tourist office on the Grande Arche de la Défense :

The Luxembourg Garden belongs to the Senate and is open to the public. Acquired by Marie de Medici between 1614 and 1631, the Jardin du Luxembourg underwent many modifications, until the work carried out by Haussmann between 1850 and 1870, which gave it its current layout. It is not just a place for a walk in the heart of Paris. There is also a puppet theatre, a playground, tennis courts, an orchard and beehives where bees make their honey. In summer, there are many chess and boules players and many concert-goers meet at the bandstand. The Luxembourg Museum presents prestigious art exhibitions. The Palais de Luxembourg in the garden is the Senate of the French Republic (France), Senate debates, most often on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, are open to the public. Those wishing to attend must obtain an invitation from a Senator , Access to the session is guaranteed within the limit of available places, My senators from the Morbihan are Muriel Jourdan, LR, Jöel Labbé (Eco) Jacques Le Nay (centrist).

Paris jardin du luxembourg senat bdlg

The Paris tourist office on the Jardin du Luxembourg

At the origin of Bouquinistes or booksellers, there is the word bouquin, a familiar form of book. Printed for the first time in 1459, it was then called “boucquain” and became “bouquin” towards the end of the 16C. It comes from the Flemish word “boeckin” meaning small book (in the sense of a book of little value or little esteem, itself derived from the medieval Middle Dutch “boek”: book. The first appearance of the term “bouquiniste” is noted in the Trévoux Dictionary in 1752, with this definition: « Which is said of the sellers of old books, of books ». The current boxes were made official in 1891, when a municipal decree authorized booksellers to leave their merchandise overnight at the place of sale granted to them. Until then, books were offered in small, easy-to-handle wooden boxes. Around 1900, it was required that the boxes should all be the same color called “wagon green”, like the first Metro, the Wallace fountains and the Morris columns. In addition, the raised cover should not exceed 2.10 meters above the ground, so as not to block the view. During the Universal Exhibition of 1900, there were already 200 booksellers on the banks of the Seine. Today, there are 3 km of old or contemporary books, engravings, stamps and other magazines that can be surveyed. All installed on the parapets of the high quays of the two banks of the Seine enclosing the Île de la Cité and Saint-Louis, On the rive droite or right bank, they are from the Pont de Marie bridge to the Pont des Arts, which is from the quay of the Hôtel de Ville to the quay of the Louvre : On the rive gauche or left bank ,they are from Pont Sully to Pont Royal which is from Quai de la Tournelle to Quai Voltaire, A wonderful sight of my Paris !

Paris seine boating back ND cat pont de la tournelle

Paris Notre Dame back pont de l'archeveque

Paris les bouquinistes to ND cathedral quai de montebello

The Paris tourist office no the Booksellers or Bouquinistes

And the official association of Bouquinistes that defend and protect this wonderful heirloom of my Paris have a Facebook page :

There you go folks another dandy set of views and sights of my eternal Paris, never a dull moment in the most beautiful City in the World, These are wonderful spots that brings nice memories to me and my family, Again, hope you enjoy this post on the curiosities of Paris as I

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

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April 29, 2023

Notre Dame Cathedral update APR2023

And time to come back to this wonderful epic work going on in my eternal Paris. I have follow thru on the reconstruction of Notre Dame Cathedral since its unfortunate fire in April 2019. There are several posts on the work going on in my blog; and feels it needs another update. Therefore, without further words here is the Notre Dame Cathedral update for April 2023. From the beginning I had full faith it will be done and it will stay tune December 8 2024 we are marching on, Allez les Bleus!!!

The CNRS/Ministry of Culture scientific project is organized into 8 thematic working groups whose leaders meet every two months by the coordinators to take stock of the research projects, their funding, their progress, their promotion through conferences, publications or online contributions They are made up of researchers from the National Center for Scientific Research, the Ministry of Culture, the University, but also associate foreign specialists. They bring together scientists from many disciplines: archaeologists, historians, art historians, anthropologists, physicists, chemists, engineers, computer scientists… who put their science at the service of Notre-Dame and its heritage.

The structure of Notre-Dame, the main victim of the fire, was often compared to a “forest” because of the large number of beams and their density researchers from the Acoustics working group are studying Notre-Dame with the aim of finding acoustics as close as possible to those which were able to accommodate the singing of the organs and the masters and choirs. This working group of the scientific site sheds new light on the use of iron and lead in the building and invites us to question the evolution of practices related to these metals over the centuries. Notre-Dame-de-Paris Cathedral is lit by more than 120 windows dating from the 13C to the 20C. During the fire, the vault was able to fulfill its role as a shield by isolating more than 3000 m2 of glazed surfaces and the firefighters managed to control the action of the water to preserve all of the stained glass windows. A transdisciplinary team contributes its skills to the restoration project. It also seizes this opportunity to study and enhance the stained glass windows and especially those of the 19C, less known, but representing an important set made under the authority of Eugène Viollet-le-Duc. The fire not only destroyed the framework of Notre-Dame but also damaged its stone structures (vaults, walls, columns). The action of the heat or the water poured out to put out the fire has indeed altered the solidity of the vaults, the condition of the masonry… which must therefore be the subject of technical diagnoses. This is why a working group bringing together some thirty stone specialists from different scientific fields has been set up to work on these questions. This working group is interested in the structural evaluation of the elements that make up the framework of the cathedral (masonry structure, wooden frame, belfries, etc.). It also analyzes the actions that can be exerted on the latter, by fire or wind. The ambition of this group is to build a “digital ecosystem” of the cathedral. This innovative monumental information system is designed to support the scientific study and restoration of the cathedral as the restoration work progresses.

Three types of work are currently underway: cleaning and restoration of the interior of the building; restoration of collapsed masonry and vaults;and work to restore the missing spire and frameworks is underway, both on the Île de la Cité and in the workshop. placing the stool. This is the base on which the new arrow will be erected. Once this task is completed, the spire and its scaffolding will then be able to gradually raise by the end of the year. It looks like a square that measures 13 meters by 13 meters. Since last week we started to mount this stool in the cathedral 30 meters high. It’s almost finished already. The 96 meter high spire is to be rebuilt identically to Viollet-le-Duc’s design. It should be visible in 2023, and the 600-ton scaffolding needed to carry out the work, as well as that of the transept crossing, was delivered at the end of 2022, announced the public establishment in charge of the restoration site in a update on the works, December 1, 2022. Luckily, the great organ had not been touched during the fire. However, it was taken apart to be cleaned. The various pieces had been covered with lead dust during the incident. Laying has already begun, and each of the instrument’s 8,000 pipes will be laid one by one. The first collapsed vault in the north transept has been resealed. The diagonal arches and the oculus of the vault of the crossing of the transept have been reassembled for the installation of the stained glass windows. As a reminder, none of the cathedral’s stained glass windows were destroyed or damaged by the fire. Dirty, however, they had to be thoroughly cleaned. On the masonry side, work is progressing: the first collapsed vault in the north transept has been closed. The diagonal arches and the oculus of the vault of the crossing of the transept have been reassembled , Then and until the end of the year 2023, we will see the scaffolding which will surround the spire gradually rise in the sky of Paris, as it is built. Eventually, the scaffolding, weighing 600 tons, will culminate at 100 meters (for the record, the arrow culminates at 96 meters), the institution continues on It has again confirm will be ready by December 8 2024 !!!

The official reconstruction of our Notre Dame :

The Pelerin or Pilgrim magazine on the advances of our Notre Dame:

There you go folks, hope you enjoy the post as I. And we are all eagerly waiting for the moment even if events has been held and will be before full restoration of Notre Dame Cathedral of Paris. And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all !!!

April 29, 2023

Once again, the tour Eiffel !!

This is actually a  new post with older pictures to tell you once again on the tour Eiffel of Paris, of course…I have written several posts on it but this monument is for some reason beyond me a very popular spot. The Eiffel Tower is located on the north end of the Champ de Mars, a large public park in the 7éme arrondissement of Paris. You can find the tower at the intersection of the Quai Branly and the Pont d’Iéna. The Eiffel Tower is not only a symbol of Paris but a symbol for all of France.


Let me tell you my disclaimer. I came here first in 1990 with my dear late wife Martine , and had gone regularly until 2005 and stop !! However, my office world HQ, was very near and I needed to pass by it walking every month! Not to mention the times passing by car !!  Nice memories of family visits, and even a business event held there !. It is has change with more hassles on security and larger crowds, not a good environment me think.


Trying to keep it short, the tour Eiffel has 1665 steps to the top, and it has its contrictions according to the weather anywhere from 6-7 cm expand or retract; on clear days you can see as far as 67 kms ( 41.5 miles). It is the most visited monument in France, the most visited country and Paris the most visited city according to the UN-WTO (United Nations-World Tourism Organisation ) official international tourism records as of before the pandemic virus figures. The new antenna culminates the Eiffel Tower at a height of 320.75 meters. In 2000, a new UHF (Ultra High Frequency) antenna led to a modification of the height of the Tower, which rose to 324 meters. There are a total of 120 antennas up with 45 TV Channels and 32 radio stations. To our days , all TV from here is numeric. About 7 seven million visitors discover the Eiffel Tower each year and around 20 million come to admire it without necessarily going up. Figures that make you dizzy indeed.

Paris tour Eiffel driving by nov11

In a day, the attendance depends on the time of year, the weather conditions and the day of the week. In general, it will be more comfortable to start your visit early in the morning, before 10h30 or at the end of the day after 17h, or even in the evening. My advice: the 2nd floor already allows you to have an incredible view of Paris. But if you don’t have the time and/or budget for the summit, that’s okay. You can use the stairs to walk up to the 2nd floor of the Eiffel Tower. That’s exactly 674 steps to climb! In total, there are 1665 steps from the forecourt to the top of the Eiffel Tower, but the stairs between the 2nd floor and the top are not open to the public. Discover at the top of the Eiffel Tower the reconstruction of Gustave Eiffel’s office; composed of realistic wax figures, this space evokes the builder of the tower and his daughter Claire receiving the famous American inventor Thomas Edison. It’s a nice view of Paris but will take the other tower…

Paris tour Eiffel from terr palais de chaillot , ecole militaire,montparnasse apr09

The surroundings of the Eiffel Tower will be transformed in depth by 2024 to create a new urban park in the heart of Paris. The layout and reception of visitors will be redesigned. Priority will be given to vegetation and soft mobility. First transformation, Place du Trocadéro. Vehicular traffic will be shifted to the north for the benefit of pedestrians. A green esplanade will offer an unobstructed view of the Eiffel Tower. The paths to the east and west of the Fontaine de Varsovie or Warsaw fountain will be redone. Only public transport, emergency vehicles and bicycles will be allowed to circulate there.

The Place du Trocadéro would be pedestrianised. An esplanade would replace the space currently allocated to cars. Only buses, emergency vehicles, bicycles and scooters and pedestrians can use the Pont d’Iéna. The space under the Eiffel Tower would be free. Quai Branly will be planted and the sidewalks of the Emile-Anthoine building will be renovated to improve the experience of visitors from the Bir-Hakeim metro station. The roadway will be planted with hedges and shrubs to protect pedestrians from car traffic. Place Jacques-Rueff , this square becomes entirely pedestrian, the circulation of buses 42 and 69 is reorganized.

The tour Eiffel is handle by the Société d’Exploitation de la Tour Eiffel (SETE):

The official Tour Eiffel

The Paris tourist office on the Eiffel tower:

 The Île de France region tourist office on the Eiffel tower:

There you go folks, another dandy monument in my eternal Paris , and you will do well to plan ahead to see it nowdays. However, if not, remember Paris is worth living for it, Again, hope you enjoy again the tour Eiffel of Paris as I.

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


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April 28, 2023

Another walk by the Jardin des Tuileries !!!

I have written plenty on my backyard garden for several years, the Jardin des Tuileries, I took this nostalgic post to update text links using old pictures, Many come for exciting and impressive buildings and expositions, but to me the real beauty of Paris lies in its streets and architectures, the bohemian look at the places, the wrinkle in the eye, and the km of wonderful walk in street or garden areas. One of my favorites of all time is the Jardin des Tuileries, and would like to take you on a tour around and close to it. Sit back and enjoy my eternal Paris !

The Jardin des Tuileries is located in the 1éme arrondissement of Paris, and was created in the 16C. It is the oldest and largest garden in Paris, It is, in fact, at the crossroads of the Louvre Palace/Museum, the Place de la Concorde, the Seine river, and the rue de Rivoli. Right along the Terrasse des Feuillants exit onto rue de Rivoli  It was the grand design of king Henri IV who wanted to link the Louvre to the Palais des Tuileries (today gone due to the communards of 1871) . It is 27 hectares or 66.7acres full of history and beauty. In or around it ,you have the Carrousel  was in honor of the son of king Louis XIV of which a great feast was held here with a horse race. It was eventually done as an arch by Napoleon I in 1806 to celebrate his victory at Austerlitz in 1805. This is the wonderful Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel.


Right at its Marsan wing of the Louvre museum you have from 1905 the musée des Arts Décoratifs,(see post) It has 9 levels of exhibition showing work from the middle ages to our days. Objects from Sévres and Meissen as well as a room from the hôtel de Serres of the 18C. In the Pavillon Marsan (the one link to the previous palais des tuileries) you have two more museums; In the first and second floor you have the musée de la Mode et du Textile, fashion and fabric museum with dresses going back to the 14C. At the third floor you have the Musée de la Publicité or marketing/commercials. Dont missed to see in the second floor (3fl US) the galerie des Bijoux or about 800 pieces of jewerly of the best creators from the world over.

Descend now to the glorious gardens ,Jardin des Tuileries, it look like in the 17C all reminders of the Second Empire period (Napoleon III) . They look just like André Le Nôtre the gardener envision it.  It was shortly on july 1559 after the sudden death of king Henri II that his wife Catherine de Médicis ordered build a palace, work began in 1564 on the verge of the old tuileries (this was a roof tile maker outfit on the bank of the river Seine in the middle ages, the tiles were use for the Louvre and others, then it disappeared to make room for the palace and garden hence the name Tuileries =rooftiles). The garden at its time was considered the prettiest in the West, done 500 by 300 meters (1650 x990 feet). So  in 1789 king Louis XVI left Versailles for this palace. it was the seat of the royals in the restauration period and the second empire periods. Napoleon III ordered built two building at the west of the garden, the Orangerie (1853) and Jeu de Paume (1862) both now museums. In March 28 ,1871 the communard set fire on the palace des tuileries and the city of Paris razed it down in 1883. Now you see the terrace between the building or pavillon Flore and Marsan that link it to the Louvre.

You come out into the Grand carré, geometric parcels of garden in the central alley and two small fountains on the sides. It is here that was the center of Le Nôtre ‘s garden. Royal gardener Le Nôtre carefully studied painting and optical effects to redesign the Grand Carré, which is remarkable for its play on perspective. He corrected the distortion due to the distance by shifting towards the East the small round basins of the reserved gardens, located to the left and to the right of the round basin (on the Place du Carrousel side), which seems much larger than the Octagonal Basin while it is twice as small !  In the center of the Jardin des Tuileries, stands the octagonal Basin, near which chairs have been placed so that you can rest, read, chat, and even sunbathe! You can also daydream and stroll on the Terrasse du Bord de l’Eau or Waterfront Terrace which overlooks the elegant Orangerie museum , building and borders the Seine river ! The tree lined part is the Grand Couvert with some sculptures including bronzes by Rodin,the Grand Bassin or fountain is surrounded by sculptures as it was in Le Notre’s time as well. At the south of the jardin des tuileries you will see the new passerelle Léopold Sédar Senghor (old pont de sulférino) , a bridge of 106 meters (350 feet)  allowing pedestrians to go from the museum of Louvre to the Orsay. Right underneath the passarelle next to the river, you have a grill doors against the wall that remind you of the passage in the “Les Misérables” of Victor Hugo. At the other extreme you have the Pont de la Concorde (1791) that was widen from 14 meters to 35 meters in 1931. passing under the bridge the river bergers that goes to the level of the quai de la conference or the cours de la reine began here at the southwest angle of the place de la Concorde.

paris jardin des tuileries pond to louvre nov19

The large octagonal pool located near the Pont de la Concorde gate is the largest of all the pools in the Jardin des Tuileries. It is adorned with a powerful central jet that reaches 12 meters high and eight inclined jets placed in each of the angles of the octagon. Located at the other end of the park near the Louvre, a large round pool has a basin supported by four consoles. It is a privileged place for children who take great joy in sailing the small sailing boats.  Two smaller round waterholes are found on the surrounding lawns. The statue of the Tigress bringing a peacock to her ; work by Auguste Cain dating from 1873, decorates the surroundings of the small round basin located on the south side, The small round basin on the north side faces the Marsan pavilion of the Louvre. It is the statue of the Tiger slaying a crocodile sculpted by Auguste Caïn in 1873, which marks this place.The two rectangular basins, the one on the north side and the one on the south side, are decorated with copies of two statues representing Atalanta and Hippomenes. The works were commissioned by Louis XIV to decorate the park of the Château de Marly. After the destruction of the Château de Marly, they were placed in the garden of the Tuileries Palace(also gone). They are respective works of Pierre Lepautre and Guillaume Coustou (father) dating from 1705. The originals are exhibited at the Louvre Museum .  The basin located to the north also hosts in its round part the statue of the Faun with a kid, the work of Pierre Lepautre from 1685.


Entering the garden from the place de la Concorde you will see right away the equetrian statue of Coysevox brough from Marly-le-roi (78) in 1719. These are imitations the original ones are in the Louvre.  By your left going in,you see statues by Paul Belmondo (brother of actor Jean Paul Belmondo) and a statue of Charles Perrault because it was this famous actor of children stories who we owe the opening of the jardin des tuileries to the public. Afterward, you can indulge in my favorite cafe, the Cafe L’Imperiale (see post) at rue de Rivoli. A must hangout for many years including now.

The Paris tourist office on the Jardin des Tuileries

The city of Paris on the Jardin des Tuileries

There you go folks, awonderful, sublime Jardin des Tuileries in my eternal Paris, a must to visit while in Paris. I have enjoyed over the years my walks and road warrior rides around these places and each time is like the first time on them ! Again, hope you enjoy the post as I.

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

April 28, 2023

 The National Maritime Museum of Brest !!!

I have written several posts on this quant city of Brest, of the Finistére dept 29 of my lovely Bretagne. In my latest visit this week I went to our memorable resto and did some walking as usual all for the memories of always, We came with the family here often and always a nice trip, Therefore, let me tell you once again about the National Maritime Museum of Brest (Navy) !! Hope you enjoy the post as I. 

Brest castle canons entr museum maritime apr23

I love castles and when they house a Maritime Museum even more, and this is the case of the one in Brest. It is both museum of art and history, science and technical, human adventures and popular traditions, as well as a  center of maritime culture open to the widest public. 

Brest castle tours museum maritime apr23

The castle was built on the foundations of a 3C Roman castellum, and is the oldest heritage site in the city of Brest. The spaces open to the public, dating from the 15C, have been redesigned by Vauban. Beyond the permanent and temporary collections of the museum, you will also appreciate the walk on the external parts of the Castle: along its curtain walls and its walkway or from the top of the towers, with a breathtaking view of the harbor of Brest, the ports, the Penfeld and the city !!!

Brest castle front museum maritime apr23

Brest castle to commercial port apr23

The National Maritime Museum holds the riches of 17 centuries of history, It traces the history of the arsenal and large sea fleets from Primauguet and Richelieu until today, and confirms the close ties between the city of Brest and this maritime history. By browsing the different rooms of the castle, the historic heart of the city, and one of the few vestiges of its past, you will enjoy a superb collection of models of ships, paintings, sculptures, the pocket submarine, the evocation of the old Brest, The memories of the prison… all in connection with the great naval adventure. Alone or in the company of a speaker, discover this exceptional site that offers a superb panorama of the harbor, the Penfeld and the city. Do my other posts with more details.

Brest castle back museum maritime apr23

Brest castle end museum maritime apr23

The official National Maritime Museum of Brest:

The Brest tourist office on the museum:

There you go folks, this is a great museum and a great parking area just in front of the castle ,where we always parked and from there is easy walking all over the city center Brest. A wonderful time well spent with the family and highly recommended as one of the best maritime museums in the world !!! Again, hope you enjoy the post as I.

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

April 27, 2023

Again, the cable car of Brest !!!

I have written several posts on this quant city of Brest, of the Finistére dept 29 of my lovely Bretagne. In my latest visit this week I went to our memorable resto and did some walking as usual all for the memories of always, We came with the family here often and always a nice trip, Therefore, let me tell you again ,the cable car of Brest, and do  read my other post on it.  Hope you enjoy the post on the cable car of Brest as I.

Brest cable car base apr23

This is an unique opportunity to see Brest from above and have a wonderful ride on its two sides. The cable car or téléphérique is a wonderful thing to ride on it at least once. Unique in France ,however, have a comprehensive post on it in another post so will keep it short this time. I was by there again this week and have new pictures for my blog which hope you will enjoy. 

Brest cable car end terminal apr23

The téléphérique de Brest  base is at 50 Rue de Siam and it is part of the line C of the local transport network call Bibus , It links the two banks of the river Penfeld that separates the districts of Siam and Capucins. It is the first of its kind in France and started in 2016. Each of its cabins can transport up to 60 persons at the same time. It is capable to withstand winds of up to 108 kph and equipped with cabins offering a capacity equivalent to half a bus each. The cable car will cover a distance of 430 meters above the Penfeld and the military arsenal, at a maximum height of 70 meters, in order to allow the passage of the buildings of the French Navy.

Brest cable car exchange tower apr23

Brest cable car passing apr23

The Bibus transport network on line C the cable car of Brest:

The Brest metro tourist office on the best views such as the cable car or téléphérique:

There you go folks, now I feel better having this unique cable car ride again in my blog, The cable car or Teléphérique of Brest is worth the ride,check ahead with Bibus. Again, hope you enjoy the post as I.

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

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April 27, 2023

A memorable restaurant of Brest !!!

I have written several posts on this quant city of Brest, of the Finistére dept 29 of my lovely Bretagne. In my latest visit this week I went to our memorable restaurant, The restaurant we started going with the family has closed and a new is in its place which we have visited too with my dear late wife Martine.  We came with the family often and always a wonderful time in the city and the restaurant, Therefore, let me tell you in a post of its own, well worth it our newest visit to Resto O Pub restaurant of Brest.  Hope you enjoy it as I.

Brest Resto Au Pub front apr23

Brest Resto Au Pub entr apr23

We initially came to the  Au Bureau restaurant at  10 rue de Siam . We encounter the camembert roti and great fish and chips , and the great 9 scoops of ice cream cup. And we came a couple times just for that and the nice friendly service. Later on, they close this restaurant. Further, they opened a new one by Quai Eric Tabarly facing the commercial port. Howrever, different spot not the same feeling me think.

On a later trip we found out quickly, the restaurant had change ownership, now call the Resto Au Pub; however, pretty much same menu ambiance, and friendly service. They were nice enough to even bring back for us the 9 scoops of ice cream !!! It was another nice time with the family in a lovely ambiance as rue de Siam is full of restaurants and very close to the castle maritime museum of Brest.(see posts).

Brest Resto Au Pub dining room from table apr23

Brest Rue de Siam restos apr23

This is a memorable foodie spot in pretty Brest. This time at the Resto Au Pub,  we had the menu of the day which for me was fish merlu rice veggies in a bechamel sauce; my boys opted for the steaks! we had the dessert of the day assorted sweets like a crumble pie and a verrine of caramel all wash down with the good Affligem beer of Belgium. Another fast friendly service good quality/price ratio and great memories of sitting by the same spot we always did.  I enjoyed it wih my boys and our dog Rex ! From 7 down to 4 in our close knit family with lots of memories here and glad to be back. It will always be a memorable cherish spot in our lovely Bretagne. 

Brest Resto Au Pub dining room from bath apr23

Brest Resto Au Pub terrace from table apr23

The Resto au Pub Facebook page

The RestaurantGuru reviews on the Resto Au Pub

There you folks, another dandy visit to pretty Brest came to an end; not the first nor the last one I am sure. This time we had on street parking just on the other side Bd des Français Libres near the cable car walking distance to the restaurant, around the corner. A wonderful time well spent with the family and another recommended restaurant for you and yours. Again, hope you have enjoy the post as I.

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

April 26, 2023

Curiosities of Brest !!!

I have written several posts on this quant city of Brest, of the Finistére dept 29 of my lovely Bretagne. In my latest visit this week I went to our memorable resto and did some walking as usual all for the memories of always, We came with the family here often and always a nice trip, Therefore, let me put these wonderful monument as a short introduction on things to see in Brest, Hope you enjoy the post on the curiosities of Brest as I. 

The Bastille Quilbignon or Motte-Tanguy tower is built on a rocky mound along the Penfeld river, Recouvrance, facing the castle of Brest (see post). It is accessed from Rue de la Porte by the Place Pierre-Péron, at the foot of the Recouvrance bridge (see post). This tower of the 14C houses the museum of old Brest. The city of Brest becomes the owner in 1954. The Tanguy tower is restored and inaugurates the museum of old Brest in 1962 which then had only two rooms. A third room was opened to the public in July 1964. In 1971, a pepper mill was added to it and its neo-Gothic cornice was replaced with crenellations to give it a medieval silhouette. The museum houses a set of models and historical reconstructions that constitute a walk through the picturesque streets of Brest before 1939, that is to say in the city as it was before the Allied bombing during  WWII.

Brest pont de la Recouvrance tour Tanguy, L’arbre empathique and tram apr23

The Pont de Recouvrance is a lifting bridge which crosses the Penfeld, in Brest. Dominating the arsenal and the military port, it connects the bottom of the rue de Siam to the district of Recouvrance, replacing the swing bridge or National bridge destroyed in 1944 by the Allied bombings. The new bridge was inaugurated on July 17, 1954, it was for a long time the largest lifting bridge in Europe. Each pylon, built in reinforced concrete, is 70 meters high. The current mobile steel span, installed in 2011, is 88 meters long, 15 meters wide, and weighs 625 tons.

Brest Pont de la Recouvrance afar apr23

The American Naval Monument, more commonly called the Pink Tower, is an American Memorial erected at the Cours Dajot, The Pink Tower was designed from 1930 to 1932, and inaugurated in 1937. The Memorial consists of a square tower in pink granite of 44 meters high or 30.5 meters (100 feet) from the cours Dajot. In front there is an esplanade and a public garden. The whole is owned by the Government of the United States but does not benefit from extraterritoriality as commonly the case in American cemeteries in Europe ,due to the fact there is no one buried in it. The Pink Tower was destroyed by the Nazis during the occupation on July 4 1941 and they built a bunker at its location. The purpose of this destruction could be to deprive the British aviators who used the tower and the Portzic lighthouse as an alignment for their bombing. After the war, in 1958, the tower was rebuilt identically, on the bunker, slightly shifted in relation to its original location, and inaugurated on July 16, 1960.

Brest mon americain passing apr23

The Brest arsenal or military port of Brest is a naval base of the French Navy consisting of a set of military and naval installations located in the Penfeld River in Brest.

Brest arsenal port naval boats apr23

At the Place des Français Libres, near tram station 6 Château, grows the L’arbre empathique or empathetic tree.
Half-metal, half-vegetable, it is a 12 meters high sculpture, a hybrid tree that wants to bring nature back to the city center, It has plants in it, of seven different species that grows there: ivy, laurel, speedwell, palm laurel, pittosporum, filaria, and arbutus, And, thanks to the 300 meters of pipes hidden in the tree, an ingenious drip system will irrigate the plants. Three cameras have been installed in the tree , to film the birds that will venture there. This was done by Spanish architect Enrique Ruiz-Geli, of many other works elsewhere.

Brest L’arbre empathique apr23

La Carène is a contemporary music hall . The venue opened its doors in March 2007, at the commercial port, consisting of two concert halls and six fully equipped rehearsal studios, open to amateur music groups. A team and recording equipment are available to the artists. This is by the entrance to the City of Brest on Rue Jean Marie le Bris.

Brest entering la Carene et mon americaine afar apr23

The Pont de l’Iroise bridge spans the Elorn river between Le Relecq-Kerhuon and Plougastel-Daoulas (see posts) on the highway (voie express) RN165 which links Brest to Quimper and further into Nantes. Among the cable-stayed bridges, it has the third largest main span in France, behind the Normandy bridge and the Saint-Nazaire bridge and before the Millau viaduct.

Brest pont de l'Iroise passing apr23

The Brest metro tourist office on its heritage

There you go folks, now I feel better having this unique post in my blog, The city of Brest is worth the detour indeed. Again, hope you enjoy the curiosities of Brest as IAnd remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all !!!

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