First Day in Venice

Our first day in Venice was rainy, but not horrible torrential rain so it wasn’t unpleasant and anyway, we are in Venice.

Gourmet pasta artistically arranged in a window.

A Venitian flag blowing in the wind.

We passed this as we were walking. It looks sort of Templar Knights to me but I have no idea. Venice has a very long and mixed history. So much happened that it is hard to keep track of it all. I was looking up the history of when Napoleon was here and it is very involved but he invaded Venice in 1796 and by then Venice had been drained by wars with the Ottomans so didn’t put up much of a fight. Then Austria won Venice in a treaty only to have France take control again in 1805.  One thing Napoleon did was have all of the little huts removed from gondolas. I guess there was too much misbehaving going on inside of them. I also read that prostitutes had red lights on their gondolas. 26 churches were closed along with 25 monasteries and covents.

Mozart was here in Venice for the carnival of 1771 as this plaque says. It was obviously a big deal. I don’t know why the garland was put up around it. Did you know that he died at 36 years of age?

Early One Morning

I walk with a friend two or three times a week very early, usually at 7 AM. It is still dark as the sun doesn’t rise until well after 8. I always have her text me when she is ready as one morning she overslept and I decided to head out on my own. The walk we always do is at the edge of a forest/park, around a lake and it isn’t very well lit which is fine when there are two of you but it was way too dark when I was by myself even though a jogger or two went by. I enjoy seeing shops still lit up in the area.

Here’s a look at the edge of the walk on a foggy morning.

An old time boulangerie, or bakery, still lit inside. This is actually a very well known place.

Kouglof for sale inside. It is a Christmas pastry which originated in Alsace.

A close up. I don’t think I have ever had one. I think it is sort of a fruit cake, although raisins are the only fruit.

A simple Christmas decoration in the window.


Back in Paris

I made a two week visit to the States to see my Mom and just returned yesterday. As usual, I have been hit like a wave with jet lag and, except for voting in the election yesterday, have just been home puttering around and napping. It will take me at least a week to recover. I’ve never found a good way to get over it, I just have to plow through it. Anyway, here are a few photos around Paris I took quite a while ago and never posted.

I read that this is the most popular photo shot in Montmartre. Maybe it’s all of the red and the view of the inviting seats down below in front of le Refuge. It’s not my favorite shot and I never even actually took it before but after reading the comment on Instagram about its popularity, I decided to take it.

Decorative book display. I can’t remember what the shop sold, maybe books?

A little cafe near Notre Dame. I like the writing and the painting on the front, maybe a priest? It’s in the Latin Quarter which once held many students and many priests teaching them using Latin, thus the name.

Views and Food

I met a friend up on Montmartre for breakfast one day at a place called the Hardware Société, owned and run by Australians from Melbourne. It was really good.

It was right around the corner and down a hill a bit from Sacre Coeur.

Where there was a very good harp player with speakers and taped background music.

The nice interior.

Beautiful and delicious french toast. I had yummy scrambled eggs.

I sat next to the window.

We had a beautiful day.

Isn’t this something? I saw it on Instagram and wondered how in the world they did it. I was standing below Sacre Couer and looked to my right and recognised the building, took the photo and then turned it so the hill looked flat. An optical illusion of sorts.


Here and There

A mix of photos here and there in Paris:

A famous restaurant in the les Halles areas for many years called Au Pied de Cochon, sort of translated as at the foot of the pig. They are known for their onion soup which I have had and it was really good.

As you can see these rats were caught-and stuffed-in 1925 in the les Halles area. There was a huge outdoor market there years ago and one of the reasons it was closed and moved elsewhere was because of the garbage and rat problem. They put a mall in its place unfortunately. These rats are in the window of an exterminator.

Sometimes you see a huge truck delivering flour via a hose (sort of like a gas or oil truck) into the kitchen of a boulangerie. This one had sacks delivered.

Seen one night in the window of a shop lit by only a lamp.

This and That in Paris

A mix of photos here and there in Paris:

This is a window of a cabaret on a little street off of Rue du Buci. Round and red, always eye catching.

Fragrant mimosa for sale-a herald of Spring along with daffodils.

Eye catching cafe tables and chairs with the obligatory ash trays. I seldom sit outside because of smokers.

I’m always taken by waiters with vests and ties and those long white aprons.