Friday, November 04, 2016

France&Fez Day 14, Paris Part 2

We were up and out early on a Sunday morning as we started our third week in France.  The streets were quiet in this late-night city!  We wandered through the Latin Quarter on our way towards the Musee de Cluny.

The Cluny is a marvelous museum of medieval art.  In addition to being housed in a beautiful medieval chateau, it is renowned for two things in particular: stained glass and tapestries. The Cluny has the remaining original stained glass from the gothic St. Chapelle (it was all broken out during the French revolution at eh end of the 18th century, and what could be saved now lives here.)  And since this was to be our stained glass day, this was the perfect place to begin.  It also has the finest collection of medieval tapestries anywhere-- particularly the famous "Lady and the Unicorn" weavings.

It was a short walk down the Boulevard St. Michel to get to the Seine, and cross over to the Isle de la Cite and the Palais du Justice.  In its courtyard, since it is also a former chateau, sits the marvelous St. Chapelle.  We headed in that direction to see how the 19th C. replacement glass looked there.

St. Chapelle was a private chapel for King Louis the 9th, completed in 1248.  Its gothic structure was built to house the relic of Christ's crown of thornes.  It is basically floor-to-window stained glass.  My pictures cannot do the light and color justice.  It was a glorious place to sit and reflect on a glorious God on a Sunday morning!

From there we headed east on the isle to Notre Dame Cathedral.  And she did not disappoint!  We walked all around her outside first, then entered as a high mass was underway, enabling us to hear the organ and a lovely choir.  And let me tell you, they know how to use incense at Notre Dame!  It was a dream come true to visit this lovely space. And I even found the statue of Joan of Arc, and early heroine of mine!

We walked along the river towards our favorite Pont Neuf bridge to catch our bus to our next destination, the Musee D'Orsay, only to find our bus did not run on Sundays.  So we walked until I was too tired to keep walking, then found a lovely cafe near St. Germain des prez, and enjoyed lunch and rest before going on to the museum.

The D'Orsay was originally a lovel Victorian railway station.  Now it houses amazing sculpture and the finest imrpessionist and post-impressionist collection to be found anywhere.  Our cups were filled with Monets and Van Goghs, and we feasted on beautiful views of the city as well.

From there, we were successful in taking a bus home.  Where ever our bus landed us, we lookedfor this fountain and this Starbucks, and knew were on the right track, with Rue Mouffetard just to the left of Starbucks.  We picked up dinner at a creperie on the way home, and rested up for our final day in Paris.

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