After Giverny, I went to Paris, where winter had already begun. I got settled in my hostel (it was a nice hostel) and found a friend who’s studying there and we had dinner. We went to a restaurant that makes crêpes.
The next day, we explored the Rodin Museum, and I had the opportunity to see The Thinker first hand. I was also able to see The Gates of Hell, the plaster cast of which we saw in Coubertain. The amount of work that Rodin was able to do was impressive. I recall a certain Ancient Greek historian assuming that every accomplished man did his greatest work at the age of 40. Rodin meanwhile, did much of his work at age 31.
Later we went to a cooking class, in which I learned to make steak with red wine sauce, mashed potatoes with blue cheese, and for dessert we had something very French…I forget what it was. After that I did some exploring on my own, and then met up with people and talked for a while.
I heard a lot of American English, so I can only imagine what Paris must be like during the summer. As with New York, you can also hear a fair bit of German and Russian.
Later I met some nice Australians at my Hostel, and spent time talking to some French metalheads who listened to me speak French intently, while buying me beer.
Thursday I went to Saint Saveur and participated in mass for a bit. I kept a pamphlet on psalms and…well, something else in French. It’s in my to-read pile. I recalled learning about it in art history, and the kind of transition the ordinary person went through when entering such vast and beautiful building.
On Thursday night I made my voyage home, first riding the Metro all across town, then taking a train to Orly, thinking that’s where I needed to go (Orly Airport). Alas, I ended up in Orly the village, not Orly the airport! I wandered through some suburbs for a while before finding a guy around my age around 12:30am, who didn’t speak any English, who hepled me locate a taxi. So I finally got to the airport at 1am for my 6:55am flight….I read some books during the wait. One connect flight to Barcelona later, and I returned home to Aix, where it was once again warm and sunny! (bikini-weather as my art professor puts it)
And since then it’s been back to the old grind: class during the week: creative writing, French, art criticism/discussion, and lots and lots of painting. Also in my daily routine is going to the gym, and attending the occasional lecture. I’ve also gone to Bible Study for the past 2 times. I go primarily for the company, but sometimes a Bible passage here and there shines though and gives me something to consider.
And of course in addition to that is the 2-3 nights out a week at Rue de la Verrerrie (“Glass Street” or “Street of Glasses”) where most of the bars/clubs are.Five weeks remain! And by the way it is still warm and sunny in the middle of the day…