“Wherever you go, no matter what the weather, always bring your own sunshine.” ~ Anthony J. D’Angelo
“Bonjour Madam, Monsieur. Welcome to Paris. It is a good time to be here. The sun is shining. Oui.”
Our talkative cab driver informed us that it had rained and turned cold the previous two and a half weeks and now summer has returned. His good spirits were contagious and I hoped our good weather would last.
Our primary purpose for this Paris trip was for Ron to attend a week long Street Photography Workshop led by Peter Turnley. Peter’s opening remarks to the group of participants and me, the tag-a-long, was, “of all the years I’ve spent in Paris, I believe you are going to experience some of the best September weather we have ever had.”
And, he was right. Temperatures were in the 70’s, low humidity, and perfect walking and photography weather. As planned, Ron and I remained another week to enjoy Paris at our leisure. This was our first visit and already, I want to return.
Weather is a universal topic and subject to daily comments wherever one lives. From our hotel manager to shop keepers, or anyone we came in contact with, we were reminded of the previous two week’s weather and how lucky we were to be here, now. Big cities can be harsh and unfriendly, but the beautiful weather seemed to bring out the best in everyone. Plenty of smiles, eye-contact, respect and an overall friendly, helpful attitude.
The Sun King, Louis IV, left behind vestiges of 17th century France, glittering extravagances which include grand mansions (now hotels), squares, gardens, and theaters. Presently, these public places once used by the aristocracy, prove to be lovely settings for everyone… for enjoying and embracing the remnants of summer.
Walking through Les Tuileries and Jardin de Luxembourg found us in a world of people who were enjoying their leisure time. Of course, some were tourists, like us, resting for a minute while checking the map to pinpoint the next location to be marked off the list, but many were Parisiennes, perhaps on lunch break, or just taking time to read, nap or lounge in the sun while taking advantage of their abundant green spaces.
The outdoor cafes, of course, were always brimming with couples and small groups, lingering in the sunshine with an espresso or glass of wine.
There was always a crowd on the lawn at the base of the Eiffle, and sitting on the wall around the Louvre was a favorite resting spot.
Place Igor Stravinsky, located by the Pompidou Center, is not only dominated by its creative and whimsical fountains, but also by the many locals and tourists who find its location perfect for eating a gelato or watching the world go by…in the sun, of course.
In the park adjacent to St. Eustache, a young woman seemingly enjoyed her time alone to read while taking advantage of the perfect weather.
Some young people along the Seine took a more serious approach to holding on to summer.
We learned that part of the joy in absorbing any culture is to sit on a park bench, people watch, slow down and relax. We don’t have to do it all.
With its many parks and fountains, flower gardens and sidewalk cafes, Paris, not only is the City of Light, but for me, this September, the City of Radiant Sunshine.
“Keep your face always towards the sunshine – and shadows will fall behind you.” ~ Walt Whitman
Magical images of this beautiful city and its people, Lynne. I so enjoyed looking at each one, and couldn’t help remarking to myself that I’m so glad the guy in the red Speedo was lying on his front and not his back. 🙂 Ron looks to be in 7th heaven in that deckchair. I think you must have been in France at the same time that we were in England. We were both so fortunate with the weather, weren’t we? xx
Yes, Ron was in 7th heaven with this gorgeous weather and great photo ops. Glad your English weather was grand, too. I do have a picture of the guy in the red Speedo lying on his back, but that picture was definitely not going up. The question is, why the branch of leaves? 🙂
Maybe he was intending to toss the Speedo next, and go for leaves, like Adam. 🙂
What he needs is a real beach. 🙂
One of my favourite places in the world, Lynne! Wonderful pics!
Thanks, Elaine. I’ve yet to hear anything negative about Paris.
Ah, Lynne, I’m a bit misty-eyed right now – gorgeous Paris basking in late summer sunshine – hard to get better than that 🙂
Sorry I had to pull on the old heart-strings with this post, Meredith, but I can see why it is everyone’s favorite place…especially in the sunshine. So much more to put up but I’m not very fast about it. 🙂
Lots more to look forward to then Lynne. What a joy! 🙂
This is a perfectly luscious post, Lynne. Summertime in Paris! I love your slant on this post. How was the photography workshop? What a fun learning adventure.
The workshop was excellent. High standards, much critiquing and lots of inspiration. However, not everyone in Paris wants to be photographed so it becomes hard work. The advantage of me being a tag-a-long is that I could attend the sessions but not have my photos critiqued. Fine with me. I’m not at a technical level yet, but I learn so much and always enjoy the camaraderie from the other participants. I really enjoyed Paris and want to go back.
I’m glad you did, Lynn.
This is as close as I will ever get to that beautiful, magical place, thank you so much for taking me there!
So good to hear from you, Vicki. Yes, Paris is a magical place and we feel very fortunate we could spend so much time there. Barely scratched the surface of what to see and do.There is a lot more to write about.
Paris – looks so lovely (and full of photo ops). Never been there, but it is definitely on the bucket list.
I find it interesting that so many other cultures seem to spend so much time socializing in public spaces and have squares, plazas, and sidewalk cafes that seem to facilitate that. Seems like the USA could use a little more of that and a few less strip malls.
My sentiments too, Carol. Public green spaces are necessary as well as outdoor cafes, etc. I can only imagine what goes on in city halls arguing over permitting these things. They worry about the trash, vagrants taking over, alcohol consumption, etc. and turn it into something that isn’t solvable. It is such a natural part of the Parisienne culture to spend time in places that make them happy.”profiter de la vie” Enjoy life is the attitude. Nothing wrong with that. Living in Paris means living in a small apartment which is good reason to stay out longer.
Thank, Paula. Such a lovely place everywhere you turn.
Wonderful! And how utterly lovely that you went! There is nothing but joy for me in Paris. To slow “down and relax” is the very best way to go! It gets to you, doesn’t it? All that sunshine, how perfect! Fantastic Lynne! 🙂
I remember your posts about Paris and how much you loved being there. It is such a charming place. Big but intimate at the same time. Thanks for your lovely comment, Gigi.
I was right there with you, Lynne 🙂 We had rather more mixed weather but the Luxembourg gardens were exactly like that for us too. What a fun series of images. I’m glad you so obviously had fun. 🙂
A confession to make now, and something that’s been making me chuckle for a few weeks. Because your photographer husband is called Ron I had put 2 + 2 together and made 74! I thought he was Ron Scubadiver, whose posts you must have seen around? I left a comment to Ron asking if you’d enjoyed Paris and he said he hadn’t been for years. The penny dropped! Fortunately he thought it was quite amusing, but I was a little embarrassed. 🙂 Apologies, my dear!
How funny, Jo. I’m not familiar with Ron Scubadiver.
My Ron’s Word press site is http://ronmayhewphotography.wordpress.com/ Check him out.
No need to apologize. Scubadiver Ron is chuckling, too. 🙂
Part of me already knew that, Lynne! I don’t know quite what gets in my head sometimes but so long as it’s amusing… 🙂
Oh, Paris. How I do love thee. Great great post, Lynne. You captured it so very well. I thoroughly enjoyed living vicariously through you & Ron on your fabulous visit!
Thank you for that lovely comment, Tahira. I know how much you love Paris and I can see why. We truly fell in love with it.
What wonderful photos, as always. The one of the man in the speedo made me laugh! I lived near the Invalides and in the summer people would sunbathe on the grass in their bathings suits as we walked out dogs around them. It always made me smile how we all pretended we weren’t in a city.
I love your comment. Since you once lived there, you can really associate with the Parisiennes’ love for parks, sun bathing, and walking their dogs. I’m surprised we didn’t see people frolicking in the fountains, but I guess that is a real no no.
PARIS! Wow, that is definitely amongst the top few places to visit in my bucket list…
Looks like you had a great trip. Loved the photos!
Yes, Sumithra. You must add Paris to your list. We have yet to travel Europe and there is so much to see. Thank you for your visit and comment. Hope school is going well.
Wow, these people know how to relax! So cool how everyone’s just sitting around reading… a very different scene to what I see in my hometown. I must visit this place 🙂 Lovely that you were able to get the best of the sunshine!
Yes, we were lucky about the sunshine. I just read where France has had the rainiest summer ever which has had a serious affect on tourism. Sunshine, reading and hanging out with friends seemed to be the lifestyle we observed, especially along the Seine.Add wine, cheese and baguettes and everyone is happy. 🙂
Ah Lynne, that made me want to dive right into your gorgeous images and experience the magic all over again. All except no.11….glad we were spared the sight of him lying on his back!! 😀
The red speedo guy rather seemed to enjoy getting his picture taken. I know how much you love this city, Madhu, and I can see why. We just hit the surface and I would love to go back. It is: magical. 🙂
Great “slices of life”, Lynne. I envy you your two-week sojourn and the opportunity to practice what you were learning in class in such a gorgeous city. A wonderful trip and an interesting post.
Thanks, VB. Admittedly, it was our first trip to Europe and we are hooked. We were fortunate the workshop was in Paris as that certainly provided the “slices of life” photos. The exotic places always took precedent and now it’s time to get to know Europe.