Summer in Paris

Paris August 1-4, 2013
It has been an interesting time being in Paris in the middle of summer – heat, dust, thousands of tourists, many locals abandoning the city, lots of shops closing for the summer and an increase in pick-pocketing and general touting. It makes for a completely different experience of the city compared to our previous visits. We have had 2-3 close encounters with what we suspect were gypsy pickpockets  on the Metro. The gypsy scams on the street we were wary of, so not a big problem – just so many of them. It is tiring when combined with the heat of high summer.

Still the beauty of the city shines through but the shine is often hidden behind hoarding. Almost every street we have traversed has a building shrouded in hoarding undergoing a renovation. The biggest we have seen is just around the corner from where we are staying – Chinese investors renovating a whole block to become a new luxe hotel.

Hammer made his second visit to the Louvre, and we both visited the Musee D’Orsay. I  had avoided it on previous visits as it always has long queues. This time we got in without too many problems but once inside, we realized that many visitors treat the space pretty much the same way they would a railway station, which was the previous use of the building. An embarrassment of riches inside where there are just so many paintings and sculptures by Renoir, Monet, Degas and many more.

Our last day in Paris we took a day trip to Versailles. Just us and a million others swarming over this enormous statement to conspicuous consumption and human vanity.

Just can’t get enough of these beautiful door handles.
Paris Plage – it was 35 degree day and from what I can see there was nowhere to swim!
Sunrise at the Trocadero.
Stunning blue of the night sky – seemed to puncture this Sony office building.
Beautiful fishy window display at Hermes.
Lunch with a view.
I could not resist  one more door handle and a beautiful shade of blue on the door. 
Place Vendome.
Place Des Vosges – at the end of one of my favourite streets – Rue des Francs Bourgeois
Colonnade walkways around the Place des Vosges.

The best scented candles in the world.

Just one more – could not resist.

The queue to get inside Versailles Place – we visited the gardens instead.