Saturday, January 9, 2010

Paris, endings and beginnings

Saturday (day 4), the group's last day in Paris. It's taken me so long to figure out how to do the blog, get the one I like the best and write anything after walking all over Paris in the cold, it's a miracle anything is being noted... So, in this first blog, I'm including the others I've written, in reverse chronological order as that is how blogs go, eh?

Warmer today (all relative in terms of the cold - the Parisians all say 'It's winter', with that little shoulder shrug and pursed lips that makes them so appealing) which is helpful. Lots of walking, finding fabulous fabric, smashing shoes and tasty chocolate.

Stuffed full with dinner including lots of wine, mammoth desserts, shared secrets and plenty of laughter. Once again a French waiter being himself amused as well as served. What an adventurous week! Tomorrow the group scatters, regroups and I remember the shifts and changes that can occur when I move out of my comfort zone and into new territory and open to new options.

Bonne nuit, K

Day 3. Paris always surprises… Messages are written in the snow on many cars in the street. Most of them in English… Many of the service people say they speak ‘a little’ but they understand much more than they are willing to admit. Be careful what you say…

As an American I always feel too loud but never mind. What else would they talk about?

Madeline Vionnet amazes, astounds and dazzles. Her talent, originality and genius inspire every one of us who views her work. Draping, beading, simplicity/complexity and all of Vionnet’s creativity will no doubt be impacting clothing design for the next decade. How fortunate for everyone.

Peace and warmth to all.

On day 2 of our visit, (or minus1 to the start of the ‘Paris on Sale’ tour – - day 1 was rest, eat and rest some more) Paris is cold (it is January after all) but not in comparison to Minnesota (where I arrived from) where the below zero temperatures feel quite brutal…

Wearing layers, we ventured out in the sunshine, preparing things for the groups’ arrival tomorrow. As always, Paris romanticizes the mundane, creating adventure wherever we roam – down avenue de l’Opera or through Monmartre’s streets of souvenirs, bling, blah, and much in between. Sartorial elegance shows her beautiful face on the subway and sidewalks. Parisian attention to detail includes much creative layering of hats, scarves, vests and clever combinations of shapes and textures.

Dinner at Absinthe, with my first taste of the liquor, was delicious and now sleep calls.

Bon nuit.

Day one of the ‘Paris on Sale’ tour. Got to sleep in late which was wonderful! Paris is sunny and cold today. We met early this afternoon to walk to lunch. An artistic mix of colors, textures and tastes filled me up as well as conversation, street scenes and dessert. A visit to an ancient mercerie provided visual and tactile satisfaction and I found some lovely cords for stringing small Paris keys that I found here.

A frosty boat ride arrived at the Eiffel Tower just in time to appreciate the twinkling lights that amuse for 10 sparkling minutes. Dropping temperatures could be felt during our trip back down the Seine so riding the Metro and returning to our hotel felt extra cozy. So much so, that a light dinner in the hotel bar with a bit of red wine provided the perfect ending to a perfect Paris day…

Sleep well!