Montmartre is often the favorite place tourists visit in Paris. It is like a little village high on a hill overlooking Paris and it gives you an idea, despite the many tourists and trashy gift shops, of what it must have been like up there when all of the Impressionists hung out here painting and learning from each other.
Across the courtyard from our apartment we can see into the windows of the people across the way. In one apartment in particular I have seen a little old couple since we have been here. They never have opened their windows in the whole time I’ve looked not even in the really hot summer that we had several years ago. and the windows have never been cleaned that I can see, looking rather opaque like bathroom windows. The curtains that hang down are ragged and torn. I know it is an older couple as I can see their gray hair when the light is on above them. I always sort of worry about them, hoping someone is checking on them. Then, one morning, I got up before the sun was up-not too hard to do as the days are getting shorter here-and there was a light on across the way in their window and not only that, the window was open. It was the first time ever that I have seen that. The next day the window was still open and I saw a man inside cleaning something. I’m wondering what has happened to the little couple there. The lady who used to live below us passed on last year and her apartment is now for sale. I wonder if their souls are around on these days when the dead are said to return to visit when the veil between the spirit world and the material world is at its thinist.
They don’t do Halloween so you’d notice here in France (at least not like in the States with costumes and trick or treating) but All Saint’s Day on November 1st followed by Day of the Dead or All Soul’s Day (All Soul’s Day is a Roman Catholic day of remembrance for friends and loved ones who have passed away) on November 2nd is huge. It’s the biggest selling day for flowers for florists in France and Mums cover the sidewalks in front of each shop. Every cemetery is packed with visitors who are visiting those who have passed on and mums are often brought to place on tombs. Some people even make it a family picnic. I didn’t make it to a cemetery on November 1st as it was raining but when I saw a patch of blue sky out of my window on November 2nd I set out for Pere LaChaise Cemetery.
I’m still crazu about turning fall leaves and taking photos of them at every opportunity. These were all on Montmartre, a little village overlooking Paris.
There is a chain of flower shops in Paris called au Nom de la Rose which only sells roses. They do a beautiful job of displaying their floral arrangements in front of the shops.
I think one of the most beautiful places in Paris in the Fall is the Luxembourg Gardens. The Tuleries Gardens always seem too large, spread out and bare with those large expanses of crushed gravel while the Luxembourg Gardens have more trees and grass (even if you can’t get on it) and is enclosed in a smaller space. Because there are crisp leaves underfoot, trees overhead, some with colored leaves, and wonderful pots of mums it is always especially lovely.