Are You Missing The Big Moments

Yesterday it was if Paris knew it was our last day and showered us literally with gifts all through the day. We felt as if we both received personal messages (I may share mine later) as we spent our last morning in Paris at Pére Lachaise visiting and photographing some of the graves there. I finally managed to find the graves Gertrude Stein, Oscar Wilde, and Moliére after having searched without success on past visits.

Later when the rain sent us running for cover, we made our way to the Metro and found ourselves on a rooftop overlooking Paris just as the sky went wild with a light and cloud show that had everyone within viewing range watching in amazement.

Everyone, but the young woman you see in the photograph above. I took a series of shots as the clouds shifted and rolled and she never looked up … not even once. If you look below, you can see where her attention was so completely focused.

I know whatever was on her phone might have been really important and she may have been dealing with a horrible emergency or hopefully reading some good news, but to not even notice that this was happening all around her  … what a thing to miss!

It made me a bit sad when I reviewed these photographs because I remember when I was that woman and I can’t help but think about what I might have missed when everything else seemed more important than just sitting for a moment in awareness and appreciation.

Cornwall is calling us back and we will be leaving Paris today with some new memories and gratitude for having had a chance to walk its streets again.

Goodbye Paris!

A Gift For Abelard & Heloise

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Carolyn guessed correctly that I was taking my bouquet to Père Lachaise cemetery, the burial place of many people famous in their day and in their death. Many know that Jim Morrison of The Doors fame is buried there, but some may not know that Moliere, Chopin, Oscar Wilde, Isadora Duncan, Edith Piaf, Camille Pissaro, Richard Wright and Gertrude Stein and her partner Alice B. Toklas rest there as well along with too many others to name here.  While many of these grave sites would have been a good place to leave my flowers, I had a different location in mind.

As you can see from the title, I took my bouquet to the shared grave of the famous lovers, Abelard & Heloise who while separated by horrible circumstances in life, now lie together in death. I’ll leave you to read the stories that tell the tale of love, separation, and the loss that accompanies their doomed love affair. Much has been written and I’ve long been interested in the letters they left behind in The Letters of Abelard and Heloise (Penguin Classics). I’ve owned a copy for longer than I can remember and still take it off the shelf from time to time to reread parts of it.

They were secretly wed in real life and I thought it a sweet gesture to leave my wedding bouquet where modern day lovers or those who are loveless have left their own letters for years. If you know the story of Abelard & Heloise, it may seem odd to leave a happy token of our special day in a place where one might see only the sorrow of lovers separated in life, but I tossed my flowers over the iron fence that surrounds their grave for Heloise who never wished to be the bride of Abelard (because of her love for him and her fear of the consequences) or of Christ, but seemingly followed the wishes of the man she loved to the end of her days. It’s a romantic gesture of hope for lovers who wish for deep and abiding love.  

My images are not quite as I would have wished…the grave site had scaffolding around it as repairs were being made to to the aging monument and it was difficult to get a clear shot without the barriers.

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Two Heads Side By Side On Pillows Of Stone

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Angling For A Good Landing Spot

Angling For A Good Landing Spot

My Overhanded Toss Of The Bouquet Captured By John

My Overhanded Toss Of The Bouquet Captured By John

Perfect Landing!

Perfect Landing!

 

Abelard & Heloise

A Gift For Abelard & Heloise