This Little Piggy Cried Oui Oui Oui All The Way Home

A small part of le LouvreWell we’re back.

It’s over. Come and gone and I’m in love. With a city.

Have you ever gone somewhere and the hype was so great that you were disappointed? That was not Paris.  Have you ever gone somewhere and even though the hype was great it didn’t compare with the experience? THAT was Paris.

Granted my exposure to Europe is fairly minimal. When we were in Barcelona a couple of years ago I was struck by just how young Canada is. This was even more apparent to me in Paris. 

A million years ago I did a minor in French in university. I got to read Sartre, Victor Hugo, Chateaubriand, Balzac, more Balzac,Rousseau, Maupassant, Gide, Cocteau, Zola and on and on – though never Proust.

Then there’s the art. You know the names. We all know the names. We know the paintings too. Without even realizing it we know the paintings.

History; The Revolution, Marie Antoinette, Robespierre, Napoleon and Josephine.

The philosophers.

And for my husband, the boulangeries, especially the baguettes.

All of this swirls through the air. A palpable vibrancy that is Paris.

We walked through the Luxembourg Gardens. Even though spring had not really arrived the beauty there was apparent. I stopped to read the information on the palace. Interesting. Hmmm. It was used as the headquarters for the Luftwaffe. Ah yes, that side of France. That’s always there too, isn’t it? As much as I would like to forget about it I just can’t.

The Jewish museum had a little photography exhibit. Photos and blurbs on Parisian Jews. You know what was interesting? A few of the people said they were French first and Jews second (if that).

Funny how easy it is to forget history even in a city where history seems to flow over you like water flowing along the Seine. 

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4 responses to “This Little Piggy Cried Oui Oui Oui All The Way Home

  1. I don’t know that I could ever love Paris as much as you do, but hearing about it with your appreciation and excitement, makes me want to go. How wonderful that you were not at all disappointed and that it was all that you hoped. By the way, love the oui, oui.

  2. I love Paris. I was there when I was 17 (high school French class trip – lucky me!) and again when I was 21. The second time around, I skipped a lot of the “touristy” stuff and wandered the alleys, having coffee in little tucked away cafes, meeting random Scottish kids who were shlepping their bagpipes to earn some drinking money, walking in the rain down the Champs Elysee (okay, I didn’t avoid *all* the touristy areas). I love that city. I love the attitude, the gardens, the greyness, the drizzle, the architecture. The food, oh the food. Thanks for taking me back down memory lane!

    Anyways, I was there before I was frum. It would be a different Paris I would see now, and I’d be interested to see what frum Paris is like. I don’t see any trips to France anywhere in our near future, though.

    Did you get to see Ilana-Davita at all while you were in France?

    • Rivki, how lucky you were. We went to the Marais to check out the Jewish/frum part of Paris was like, I even made sure to wear a dress! I’m not sure what it would be like to be frum in Paris. Even with the bad history that Paris had during the war I did not get the same oppressive feeling that I had in Barcelona, however the Jews were driven out of Barcelona in the 1300’s (I think) and the Jewish Quarter consisted of one brick with three hebrew letters on it. I understand that there is also a synagogue there but we never found it. I think that the fact that Napoleon did so much for the rights of the Jews in France can’t help but give me a different feeling for the country.

      Ilana-Davita and I did email eachother about getting together but it didn’t work out. From reading her blog lately it sounds as though her plate is pretty full and I’m glad that I didn’t cause her any more work. We loved Paris so much and now that are kids are getting older it seems quite possible that we will make it back there in the next few years. Hopefully I will get to meet her at that time.

      The next post that I publish will have photos in it, I’m just working on it now. Unfortunately somehow our cameras got put in the wrong cases or I forgot which case contained which camera either way we did not have our better camera with us so the shots are not the best.

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