There Is Something Free At Printemps In Paris

Printemps department store in Paris is filled with all types of marvelous items most of which exceeded the amount I wished to spend when I was there recently with my sister Margaret. Everything in the store has a price tag and even a trip to the loo for a bathroom break cost a euro, but there was one thing that could be had there for free. You have seen it before if you saw a post I wrote a few weeks ago. If you missed it, let me just say that what you get for free at Printemps is an amazing view of the Paris skyline.

I snapped this photograph on a walkway between two of the Printemps buildings. Click on it to get a clear look at the two window cleaners on the upper right side of the image.

This is from the other side of the walkway. I had my Canon G11 set in Color Accent mode which in this case was set to pick up the color red.

Here you can see a small gathering of people trying to catch the perfect shot from the rooftop terrace.

 

Another image from the rooftop.

I know I have completely disregarded the rule of thirds but I don’t care. I like this shot with the abundance of clouds and sky.

More big sky along with the ever familiar Eiffel Tower.

There is ample space to have a rest from your shopping or sightseeing and there is a small restaurant on the same level serving light snacks and drinks. Anne from Anne In Oxfordshire visits friends in Paris fairly often and was curious as to where I had managed to capture images like those above. I told her when she asked in a comment that I was saving the location for another post, but now that I’ve done the big reveal I wonder if anyone worked it out before today.

Painting The Town Red In Paris … Almost

Painting the town red has had different meanings over the years. From spilling blood to drinking and rowdy behavior none of which we did during our travels yesterday, but we did stay out too late to ride the Metro home and had to take a taxi after seeing the sights below.

This shot could only be obtained by taking it from the middle of the cross walk when it turned green for about thirty seconds which did not seem to matter to drivers who kept going anyway.

Margaret and I went back and forth more times than we probably should have and finally when I felt I had enough to pull a good image from several, I stood off to the side and watched Margaret stand her ground in the ” green for go ” cross walk. She’s the blurry person in the center with her arms up to snap her photo. Note the traffic does not really stop unless they have to avoid hitting you. I found this a bit scary when I was out there as drivers kept coming regardless of right of way.

Table (steps) for two at the foot of the Eiffel Tower .. you can just make out Margaret finishing her crêpe in the bottom right of this photo (ham, cheese, and french fries with a hotdog thrown into the mix) while sitting in the light of the famous landmark. I enjoyed a dessert crêpe with chocolate, banana, and ice cream. I know most people wouldn’t call that dinner, but it did contain several food groups with some sugar mixed in for energy.

Every so often throughout the evening the Eiffel Tower lights up for ten minutes at a time with sparkly lights which make it look even more festive. A boat near the bottom of the image crept into my shot while I was trying to capture the tower with her extra glow.

We waited in long lines to go to the very top of the Eiffel Tower and did so with people who all seemed patient and well-behaved until the two women below broke into the line that we had been in for about forty minutes.

This was on an upper level after having stood for about an hour already in the first line at ground level. They pushed past two smaller and slightly older ladies and seemed intent on pushing past us when Stonewall-Margaret had enough and became an immovable rock. First Margaret made a small space for the two nice ladies to get in front of us and then she planted herself in front of the two pushy women and held her ground moving forward when necessary, but not allowing herself to be rushed.

The women as you can see thought it was quite funny and the older women kept pushing and touching Margaret so much so that at one point Margaret said to me, ” I wonder if she could scratch my left shoulder-blade for me … I don’t think she’s touched that spot yet! ” It was both exasperating and funny at the same time.

Here is Margaret looking pretty well over it just before we reached the elevators to go up to the last level and the pushy woman as you can see was trying to avoid my camera. Other people were watching her poke and push at Margaret and were making faces that showed their surprise at the woman’s bad behavior as well.

After a good look around I snapped a ton of photos some of which you see above and then we stood in more lines before touching down safely on the ground.

Earlier in the day we paid a visit to the Arc de Triomphe where once again we were not content to just gaze up from below, but had to make the climb to the top to take in the view.

I took this one of us myself so it is a bit off-center.

Once the heat drove us down, we saw that there were preparations underway for a remembrance ceremony.

There were members of the military and soldiers everywhere.

This female office was advising a women who was about to try to cross the dangerous looking roundabout to use the underground tunnel instead. After snapping a few more photos, we headed for the tunnel ourselves as we were not allowed to get too close to what going on under the arches.

Posing for glamour shots at a place for remembering the dead always surprises me.

Once we were through the tunnel we saw more activity related to the ceremony happening on the Champs-Élysées.

I don’t think this gentleman minded my taking his picture. Most were willing to pose for us.

The children were waiting so patiently for everything to begin.

Here is a little cafe scene that one always associates with Paris.

And a last one for today. If you click on this you can see the drivers are all talking on their cell phones on their way home after work.

Happy New Year – 10 Years Ago Today

Ten years ago today people were worried about what might happen as the clocks rolled over into 2000. I had bigger fears than Y2K back then, but even so I tried to focus on the moments and the experiences of my daily life placing more value on creating a portfolio of memories than banking it all for a mega big retirement plan. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve done the traditional things as well, investing in property and my 401K, but by far the best rewards in my later years will be the experiences I’ve shared with the people I love.

This was Paris in 2000, with us standing under a damp winter sky in front of the Eiffel Tower where I took my daughter Miranda in hopes of adding to her portfolio of special moments and memories.

Here’s to creating new memories in 2010 and building a retirement fund of a lasting kind … our connections to each other and the fearless pursuit of life worth living.