Thursday, October 31, 2013

More wandering the Left Bank, d'Orsay Museum and Macarons...

Some very interesting windows and doorway as we left the restaurant - did not figure out what this building was....

Nearing the d'Orsay Museum, again there was a big row of bikes to rent - these are found everywhere around the city - you rent them for 90 min intervals and return to a stand so they are "checked in".  We have this in Minneapolis but not to this extent. 

The history of the museum, of its building is quite unusual. In the centre of Paris on the banks of the Seine, opposite the Tuileries Gardens, the museum was installed in the former Orsay railway station, built for the Universal Exhibition of 1900. So the building itself could be seen as the first "work of art" in the Musee d'Orsay, which displays collections of art from the period 1848 to 1914.

Very interesting building - and unlike the Louvre where the interior is all redone, this museum still looks and feels like an old railway station. Before we had decided if we would attempt the Louvre, we decided to at least see the d'Orsay - with its collections of sculpture and impressionist art.

The old clock

Passageways between areas of the museum

A view of Montmartre and Sacre Coeur from the museum

From there it was on our way to more things we wanted to find. 
Along the way

I wanted a better picture of this  - on the left bank, in the Latin Quarter,

Shakespeare and Company is the name of two independent bookstores on Paris's Left Bank. The first was opened by Sylvia Beach on 17 November 1919 at 8 rue Dupuytren, before moving to larger premises at 12 rue de l'Odéon in the 6th arrondissement in 1922.[1] During the 1920s, it was a gathering place for writers such as Ezra Pound, Ernest Hemingway,James Joyce and Ford Madox Ford. It closed in 1940 during the German occupation of Paris and never re-opened.[2]
The second is situated at 37 rue de la Bûcherie, in the 5th arrondissement. Opened in 1951 by George Whitman, it was originally named "Le Mistral" but renamed to "Shakespeare and Company" in 1964 in tribute to Sylvia Beach's bookstore. Today, it serves both as a regular bookstore and as a reading library, specializing in English-language literature. The shop was featured in the Richard Linklater film Before Sunset and in the Woody Allen film Midnight in Paris.
The bookstore includes sleeping facilities, with 13 beds, and Whitman claimed that as many as 40,000 people have slept in the shop over the years

The bookstore is located in a beautiful area just steps from Notre Dame (in the background) and the Seine river. 

So by this time, it was definitely time for some refreshment and after walking the very crowded and popular left bank area and considering several restaurants

we picked Le Sainsev.

 Bill claims a few drops of rain fell but actually it was only on him, if so, so the rest of us denied it. He had the seat that wasn't quite under the awning...

I knew there was a reason to write these things immediately! I don't remember the food now... but obviously fries and salad were popular. I think mine is rabbit or duck, Judy's was chicken, don't know the other one. 

But afterwards we walked across the street to get some treats to take home. Maison Georges Larnicol - a well known chocolatier.  We got chocolate and macarons.

After a long day of walking, enjoying our terrace and our dessert. 

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