Yesterday, Sunday, was our last day in Paris. Tim and Tracey went up the Arc de Triomphe, to see Napolean’s Tomb, and to the Louvre.
Susan and I went to a special Van Gogh exhibit at the Musee d’Orsay. Of course the museum was packed, though we arrived pretty early. We looked at a few paintings then got in line for he Van Gogh exhibit of his work from Auvers-Sur-Oise, a city about 15 miles outside of Paris, where he spent his final months before walking into field in July of 1890, age 37 and shooting himself fatally.
His painting during his time in Auvers was prolific and I just really like Van Gogh’s paintings, they are interesting, many are beautiful, the colors and brushwork are interesting.
We spent a long time there, then I had lunch upstairs (where there are more Van Gogh’s in the museum, including a self portrait and a starry night painting). The Musee d’Orsay is an old train station, very beautiful and ornate. From the cafe on the 5th floor, looking through the clock, you can see the Sacre Coer and peeking through we could see the Seine and the Tuileries park.
We looked at the two aforementioned photos and had been at the museum for over four hours, the rain had stopped and the sun was out, so we went outside to enjoy the day. We walked first along the Seine where the sun was shining on the Louvre museum/palace, took some photos, crossed the river and walked in the Tuileries towards the Place de la Concorde and Eiffel Tower.
The Rugby World Cup concluded just the night before…there had been a big fans’ type area set up in the Place de la Concorde which was being dismantled (South Africa beat NZL 12-11, which thrilled South Africans). Maybe that event contributed some to the crowdedness in Paris over the weekend.
We walked back, along the river for a while (on one side there were lots of shops selling prints of every kind from vintage to modern to botanicals to reproductions of paintings), and on the other side the kiosks were selling used books). We saw the huge Palace of Justice and other beautiful buildings, before heading back to our apartment. The last route which took us past the Hotel de Ville, which was sporting Olympic Rings (I cannot imagine Paris being more crowded, but during the Olympics I am sure it will be).
And that’s a wrap on Europe for me in 2023. It was a busy travel year: Germany, France, Monaco, Italy, Spain, Austria, Switzerland, Peru and in the USA Kentucky, Texas, Florida, California…here’s to a great end of the year and a wonderful 2024.