Thursday, May 8, 2008

Paris Before We Met

I am in the process of weeding things from my surroundings as our family gets ready to pack up the last 12 years of our life and come July split off in different directions as we go through a monumental shift in how and where we live our lives.  As a result, I have been going through things and of course, get all caught up and side-tracked in old photographs, magazines, the dilemmas of, "Do I keep this Mother's Day card from 1987 and where do I pack it if I do?"  All things that take me totally off track from what I am supposed to be doing--downsizing!

I am a lover of many things but antiques are right up there for me.  During a phase when I had a small business, I was constantly at auctions, digging around for that great find (many of which I kept for myself......that's allowed).  Often times, I would buy something that ended up being auctioned off along with a box full of junk which I would then get to search through and hopefully find the elusive pot of gold.  Here are two items that although will not get me millions at Sotheby's, make me happy just the same.  

This is Opéra Garnier as it looked at the turn of the 20th century.  This building is the piece de resistance in Baron Haussman's urban planning crusade of Paris.  Designed by Charles Garnier, a young, unknown architect at the time, Mr. Garnier beat out over 170 of his contemporaries in winning the right to design this opulent, over the top structure.  It is magnificent and deserves a trip inside should you be in Paris--a tour would be nice, but to experience a performance here is a different memory to take home with you altogether.  

Here's a photograph of the Champs Elysées, looking towards the Arc de Triomphe from the Place de la Concord--that is quite a mouthful.  Check out the horse in the center.  How crazy is that.  I can just hear Maurice Chevailier singing "Thank Heaven for Little Girls" as he strolled down this very same boulevard in the movie Gigi.

Photo Credit:  Personal Collection

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