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Posts tagged ‘Eiffel Tower’

No. 276: Roland-Garros dans la Ville

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I know that the French Open has come and gone, but I have to say, I certainly did love watching it with thousands of my closest friends on the Champ de Mars, when Roland-Garros came to my ville this year. It was the first French Open that I remember there being a humongous Jumbo-tron on the grounds in front of the Eiffel Tower, not to mention the serving cages where you could perfect your serve and measure your speed, and a temporary clay court perfect for volleying with friends.

The weather certainly cooperated throughout most of the Open and it was a hoot to picnic in the park and watch the drama unfold without having to pay a pretty penny. Merci bien to the City of Light for providing this excellent experience.

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No. 275: Dîner en Blanc

diîner-en-blanc-paris.jpgOn my way home from the Eurostar last night I found myself smack dab in the middle of the twenty-sixth annual dîner en blanc. This pop-up dining event secretly planned and held al fresco in a predetermined place which is kept secret from attendees until a few moments before it begins, is definitely on my bucket list of things I hope some day to be invited to.

This year’s by-invitation-only-soirée took place over six bridges throughout Paris. Dressed in all white and eating only white food (no vin rouge allowed), over 12,000 people participated in this posh version of a flash mob.

From talking to friends who have been a guest at this feast in the past, dîner en blanc seems to be a highly codified event. There are “team leaders” who are responsible for the invitation, organization and behavior of each small group. In addition to the white dress code, white food, and white wine or champagne (beer and spirits are prohibited), you must also bring your own table and chairs (white, bien sûr), white tablecloths, and dishes. Some diners go as far as bringing white flowers in vases, candles, and center pieces. The most important rule is that everyone disappears before midnight and leaves their dining site undamaged and spotless—under threat of being blacklisted for the following year’s festivities.

Last night there were lots of extravagant white hats and pearl-buttoned gloves, and when the Eiffel Tower sparkled, the revelers did too—producing long sparklers lit up on cue like synchronized swimmers in an old MGM film.

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It is an elegant affair, and possibly the one-and-only time of the year that you will encounter so many happy, smiling and relaxed Parisians. Furrowed brows, downturned lips and icy stares, all disappear for a joyous but respectful evening. It is also the only day of the year that Parisians stow away their all-black wardrobes and slip into something brighter, whiter and lighter.

It is a lovely change. Hmmm…maybe dîner en blanc ought to be a monthly event?

 

Vocabulaire

al fresco: in the open air

dîner en blanc: white dinner, dinner in white

vin rouge: red wine

 

 

No. 253: ET at Home

Since I am crazy for the ET or TE (tour Eiffel) as the French say, I thought I’d try my hand at making some at home with the help of a few little hands. They may not be as pretty as the ones you find in the shops, but they do taste pretty darn good, and were made with love.

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No. 156: Signs of Springtime in Paris

After a seemingly endless and bold fall, and a warm and mild winter (en fait, I’m not even sure winter ever visited), springtime in Paris has already arrived. Here are a few signs, in case you need some convincing. I shot all of these photos this morning, I promise.

1. The daffodils are blooming along the Quai.

The daffodils are blooming along the Quai.

The legions of tourists are back and queuing everywhere.

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The grass is STILL resting, comme d’habitude.

The Eiffel Tower has some gorgeous new arm candy.

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That rascal, Taz, is digging in the flowers.

The rooftops are in top form.

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The Parisians have swapped out part of their black wardrobe in favor of vivid colors.

The annuals have been planted and are blooming just like the flowering trees.

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It’s time to decide which warm weather handbag to use.

Vocabulaire

comme d’habitude: as usual

No. 155: A Munchy, Crunchy Tower

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Imagine how healthy we would be if this was our “food pyramid”…the edible Eiffel Tower…

No. 141: Où est la Tour Eiffel?

Some rascal with a clever sense of humor has been altering the street signs around Paris and is mischievously guiding the way to my tragic street lamp.

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Vocabulaire

Où est la Tour Eiffel? Where is the Eiffel Tower?

No. 117: Foggy Nights

I guess because I don’t hail from a place where it is foggy, I adore foggy nights in Paris. There is something mysterious and romantic about getting lost in the fog, or at least losing part of your tower.

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ET foggy

ET foggy

ET foggy 2009

…the fog is beautiful in the morning too...

…the fog is beautiful in the morning too……and all day long...

…and all day long…