Paris means a 6-hour drive from where we live. So it is perfectly manageable! The decision to go was made on Monday late afternoon. We left by 7am the next day with our commercial vehicle (Citroen Berlingot) packed with a camping mattress and a warm duvet! Off we went for a quick mother & daughter Parisian break!
First stop: the town where I spent my childhood. I grew up by the river Seine, in a beautiful suburban town.
It was fantastic first stop! We got our skateboards out of the car and headed for a visit along the banks of the Seine where so many masterpieces by Monet, Renoir, Courbet, Morisot, Manet (the Déjeuner sur l’herbe), Van Gogh were painted. I’m overly proud that my native town is one of Monet and Renoir’s favourite subjects (that’s where you’ll find La Grenouillère, their favourite bistrot, now a restaurant). Wisteria, lilac… the nature was at its best. The gardens were bursting with colours. A calm, pastoral setting so close to Paris is just pure luxury! It was FULL. Full of beauty.
We set up camp in Versailles. We stayed there several times before because it is such a practical family accommodation. Camp sites have a special place in my heart. I love starting a conversation with my pitch neighbors. This time, it was an elderly Danish couple who were visiting Paris for the first time. Like us, they were sleeping in their car! At Versailles’s camp you can bring your tent, sleep in your camper or rent a cabin – bonus you can enjoy their pool and their bright common room (where you can play board games, have a coffee or use the internet…). The train station is close-by and Paris is less than 30 minutes away.
We spent the end of our first day walking back and forth to the Château de Versailles before heading to Paris the next morning.
Our goals in Paris:
- walk form St Michel station to the rue des Rosiers
- head to the Passage Brady
- Jeunet’s exhibition near Montmartre
- stop by the Jardin des Tuileries
- final stop by the Eiffel Tower
We quickly headed to La Boutique Jaune as I wanted to introduce my daughter to Yeddish delicacies (we bought pirojkis, a red berry torte, and an apple Polish pie for our return trip picnic) and since Rebecca talked about a nice falafel stop in the Rue des Rosiers, we stopped there too for lunch. I adore this quartier.
My relationship with Paris is linked with food… (all my travels are to be honest)! We always stop at the Passage Brady and especially at Velan‘s and this time was no exception. We filled up with spices and chai tea bags (and soaps and encens,…)
The time was flying so we decided to take the metro and visit the Caro/Jeunet exhibition.
On Jeunet’s official site you can read : “ Often cinema exhibits focus mainly on writing. But ours will be entirely visual, including all the emblematic items from our films, costumes, storyboards, research drawings, models, photos from the shooting, etc…
The Halle Saint Pierre was an obvious choice. An unpretentious museum of popular art, located just a few meters from where Nino Quincampoix chased Amélie in the gardens of the Sacré Cœur…”
I must admit I have not seen many of their films, but I am one of the numerous fans of Amélie Poulain. I also recently watched Un Long Dimanche de Fiançailles and was touched just the same way.
The exhibition was what I expected only it made me very frustrated. I was hungry for more Amélie! I wish we could have been swallowed in the darkness of the exhibition room and become part of a film. I wish we could have been transported into a vintage yellow filtered ideal Paris and meet Amélie and Nino. I wanted to stay there and watch the movie again and again…
Here are a few photos.
We walked around the Sacré Coeur area after our visit and enjoyed the view. But I am not very fond of Montmartre – especially during the peak season! – and our long walking day ended up at the Eiffel Tower where we took our train back.
See you soon Paris. I’ve missed you very much…