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Paris... one of our second homes

my travelling lens

Being back in in Paris is like putting on an old pair of comfortable shoes.

Wedding Photograph is common in Paris

My first trip to the Bir-Hakeim bridge was a bust as there were three different wedding photographers at work.

Bir Hakeim Bridge

The Bir-Hakeim Bridge is one of my favourite photo loations.

Our apartment in Paris

We rented "our regular" apartment on rue Bauchaumont.

 

Paris

We flew from Budapest to Paris. We look forward to our return to Paris. We will be staying in "our" apartment located off rue Montorgueil, which we think is one of the top areas to stay when in Paris. Not a tourist street, it is lined with cafes, bakeries, even a hardware store. Great street life here.

The Rue Montorgueil neighborhood is a small section of the Châtelet-Les Halles district, located at the city center. North of Rue Montorgueil is the area known as the Grands Boulevards; directly south is the Saint-Eustache Cathedral and Les Halles. It is considered one of Paris's permanent market streets, offering a wide range of fresh high-quality foods.

After close to 20 visits to Paris we don't have to get up in a rush to knock off a specific number of tourist locations. We can take out time and casually select an area of the city we want to explore. For me, I have a number of photography spots that I routine visit. Not to capture them for the first time, but just in case something unique can be captured.

Click the thumbnail image to see an expanded image, arrows on right or left side progress through the image presentation.

  • DSC_1001-1072 Bir Hakeim Passy
  • DSC_2862-850-MetroStation
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  • DSC_1001-1072 Bir Hakeim Passy
    Bir Hakeim Bridge with Passy Apartments

    One of my first photo locations was to return to the Bir Hakeim Bridge. I have been thinking from my last time in Paris what I would like to say with a photo about this bridge. It crosses the Seine into a rather exclusive area known as Passy.

    But today was not really the day for much different as the bridge was jammed with bridal photographers. I would have to come much earlier in the morning.
  • DSC_2862-850-MetroStation
    Paris Métro
    I use the metro to go everywhere. Typically a book of ten tickets, but this year I bought a pass and that came in handy. I often walk down to . Châtelet – Les Halles - ranked as the world's largest subway station. There are five metro lines and three rail lines that converge here. Pictured above, one of the Châtelet entrances includes a replica of the original canopies designed by Hector Guimard.
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    Look at the great font that was used for the original metro signs. Designed by Hector Guimard in a style that caused some surprise and controversy in 1900.
  • DSC_2865-850-ChateletMetroSign
    La Canopée - the expansive covering of Les Halles.
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    Notre Dame
    Here is a church where the back end is the most attractive.
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    Rue Bauchaumont
    Our apartment is on this street, and over the years it has changed from a very very quite pedestrian street to one that is markedly more trendy.
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    Dancing Along the Seine
    The week we were in Paris I found groups doing ball-room dancing in front of the Opera House, and on this evening, along the Seine.
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    Pont de Bercy
    I sent a note to a fellow in Paris who I have followed on Instagram. Suggested we meet for a photowork, which we did, and Vincent took me to the Pont de Bercy.
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    Pont de Bercy
    I love this bridge with the stone pillars holding up the upper deck (carries Metro Line 6) and large fixtures that hand on chains.
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    Palais Garnier
    The Paris Opera House is a 1,979 seat opera house built in 1861 to 1875. The architect was Charles Garnier.
  • DSC_2483-850-CafeBike
    One of the cafes on rue Montorguei.
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    Impasse St Denis
    Rue St Denis is one of the oldest streets in Paris. This Impasse dates back to the 14th Century. It has held various names including the rue de la Corderie - named for the previous rope merchants.
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    A morning walk along rue Saint-Denis
  • DSC_2635-850-Paris-ruedelevis
    Market on the rue de Levis
  • DSC_2691-850-Asterlitz-Traversiere-BW
    Viaduc d'Austerlitz is a rail bridge for trains and Metro Line 5, crossing the Seine and linking to Gare d'Austerlitz on the left bank. It was designed by the architect Jean-Camille Formigé, who also designed the Pont de Bir-Hakeim.

    I liked the combination of curved lines on the rail bridge to the razor sharp vertical lines of the Tour Traversiere.
  • DSC_2708-850-Point de Bercy
    The Pont de Bercy, crosses the Seine linking the 12th and 13th arrondissements of Paris. One levve is a roadway, the upper level carries line 6 of the Paris Metro. The bridge was built between 1863 and 1864, replacing a previous suspension bridge, and in 1904 enlarged to carry Line 6 of the Metro.

 

This year I wrote one of the photographers on Instagram who lives in Paris, to let him know I would be in Paris and asked if he wanted to go on a photowalk. He did, and Vincent Marcolla (https://www.instagram.com/vincentmarcolla/) and I headed out for a long walk along the Siene. We walked to the the Pont de Bercy, a beautiful bridge that I had not visited on previous times in Paris. We walked and talked for over five hours as if we had known each other for years! Great thing how photography brings people together.

Sometimes just walking leads to places you previously looked for and could not find! The evening walk along the river had rue Cremieux just appear. This is a street of old homes painted in pastel colours is written up in many tourist articles on Paris. The aspect I did not like was the paper signs in windows saying "No Photography". I get it, it can be rough living at at tourist location, but really!

Click the thumbnail image to see an expanded image, arrows on right or left side progress through the image presentation.

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    Rue Cremieux

    Originally opened in 1865 on the site of the former National Arena. The street is near the Gare de Lyon train station. This is a pedestrian street, paved since 1993, lined with small houses of similar design with colored facades.
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    Place des Vosges
  • DSC_2817-850-SunsetWalk
    Shooting directly into the setting sun while Vincent and I walked the strees oi La Marais created long dramatic shadows.
  • DSC_1989-850-Rue Bachaumont
    Rue Bachaumont is located in the 2nd arrondissement. The street is named for literary Louis Petit of Bachaumont (1690-1771).

    Over the years rue Bachaumont just gets more trendy with cafes and a hotel.
    A plaque at the intersection of Rue Bachaumont and Rue Montorgueil pays homage to Bruno Lenoir, a shoemaker, and Jean Diot, a servant, arrested on 4 January 1750 and burned alive in the Place de Grève on grounds of homosexuality – it was the last execution for homosexuality in France.
  • DSC_1998-850-Paris-Strut
    Oh those women of Paris know how to walk with a real sense of presence!
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    Buying Glasses involves Community Buy-In
    I was unsure about two frames, so while I was outside the store to see the frames in natural light, we called our some people from the restaurant and they willingly came over and offered their opinions on which frame they preferred. I think the store was blown away by this!
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    Place du Louvre
    At night as the sun sets, the lights of the pyramids some on and the Place takes on a very special feel.

On each time in Paris we always seem to encounter something new, some location we have never before visited. This year we headed out to see rue de Lévi, a street noted for its market. Well it was a couple of notches below rue Montorgueil but pleasant enough. While there we had lunch at the cafe, Dome - a trendy cafe that was packed. The street has numerous market stores and on the morning we were there the street had numerous outdoor market vendors adding the the festive mood.

The day before we were leaving Karen pointed out an optical store I had not previously visited. eyeshow, 75 - 70 rue Montmartre, 75002 Paris. Well, they had a number of frames that interested me. In the end it came down to two different colours of blue, and I decided it would be best to go outside in the natural light to see what the frames looked like. While out on the street, Karen called over to people sitting in the outdoor patio and asked that they thought. Sure enough, people came over, they all offered very solid opinions with reasons as to a preference and the same was concluded! Who says people in Paris aren't friendly!

We had a good lunch at a very busy and trendy cafe:

Le Dome
4 avenue de Villiers
75017 Paris

Our friends, Chris & Carmen Grant were in Paris for two of the days that we where in Paris, on one night we went for dinner in a great little restaurant not far from the Palais Royal:

Le Petit Machon
158 rue St. Honoré
75001 Paris
+33 1 42 60 08 06

We ate at this restaurant last year with our friends Mike & Margot from Vancouver and Jacques and Vannarith from Paris. It was a very good meal in a charming setting. We were not disappointed this year either. We ate late, so the restaurant was not crowded, the French doors were open allowing a slight breeze to float through the restaurant. Our meets were very good either either the roast veal or duck being selected. Our server suggested a very nice, and very affordable bottle of red wine. The next night with Chris and Carmen I shopped at La Maison Stohrer, a very old and established pâtisserie in business since 1730. Expensive but good.

We liked Le Petit Machon so much we decided that as a gift to celebrate the wedding of our friends we would give them a gift certificate to the restaurant. In North American this is a common occurrence, but we found out not so in Paris. After much explanation the person at the restaurant got the idea that we would pre-pay for the meal. We received a business card with "Free Meal" written on the back, and it was written in the reservation book, the bible of restaurants, their names and "Free Meal". We are confident all will work out.

Paris is a city of flowers
Fashion shoots seem to be going on everywhere
Dancers were in various locations across Paris.
In the evenings the cafes fill up quickly
Palais Royal and the Buren Columns
Glimpses of the Eiffel Tower. The Eiffel Tower is such a part of Paris. You can be in so many places, turn around, and there it is.

 

Our last day in Paris was relaxing. In the morning I did a long walk down rue St. Denis, one of the oldest streets in Paris. It was charming. Very authentic. There are numerous old passages which now many are decaying but have an interesting aspect. I was there too early in the morning and many were locked. I am going to explore this street in more detail on my next visit to Paris.

Then the day to leave arrived. Our driver arriver as scheduled and we were off to the airport and then the non-stop flight to Vancouver on Air France.

Wonderful trip. Il était très bon d'être de retour à Paris. Nous ne pouvons pas attendre l'année prochaine.