My Buried Life

Thursday, October 6, 2011

“Yet with these April sunsets, that somehow recall
My buried life, and Paris in the Spring,
I feel immeasurably at peace, and find the world
To be wonderful and youthful, after all.”
                                                   ~~T. S. Eliot, "Portrait of a Lady"

Hiya folks.  How's things?  I'm a little excited right about now.  Packing.  Big trip planned this weekend.  To Paris!  Yep, we're pretty stoked.  This little break in the action has been planned for awhile--a chance to knock the dust of Sicily off our boots for a few days, do a little exploring, sightseeing, maybe even visit a cafe or two.

We visited Paris once before and it was a real nice time.  We stayed in a hotel adjacent to the Arc de' Triomphe, which was beautiful in it's own right, and also close to many of the best known sights.  There's a kind of energy there that's hard to describe.  Even during the winter, an effervescence hung in the air, and walking around the city was like touring a dreamscape.

We were lucky enough to stumble on a great restaurant or two, where the waiters were haughty and high-minded, but with a twinkle in their eye that told you it was all part of the show.  The view from the Eiffel Tower was amazing, and even with the cold wind blowing, it was almost like you could feel the heat of the city in the updrafts.

The Louvre is one of the Seven Wonders of The Modern World, IMHO.  You could wander there for days, go missing, lose oneself, and never cross back on your own path.  The art was amazing, and I still remember us sitting in a little cafe at the stop of a long marble staircase--Furnacegirl and I were not married yet--and thinking to myself: This is the stuff of legend.

I wasn't really writing seriously back then, but I still felt inspired to jot notes in journal.  I even got to see in person a statue by Michelangelo--called The Bound Slave--that I had sketched from a picture years before.  It was one of those surreal experiences, and to walk up and put my fingers on the cool marble was a kind of revelation.  Here's my primitive sketch.  Thanks for asking.  :D

It really is true what they say: a unique magic inhabits the streets of Paris.  There's a reason why writers like Hemingway and Fitzgerald and Stein made it their second home.  Something hauntingly alive dwells in this place, and until you've been, it sounds too much like a fairy tale to be believed.  Who knows? Maybe on this visit, some of that writing magic will rub off on me.

Anyway, this time out, it'll be a little more low key, more of a vacation and less of a tourist routine, relax, enjoy the sights--but that's how we like it.  And I'll bring back a few photos too, just for funzies.

A few quick admin notes before I sign off:

1) If you haven't stopped by and checked out all the groovy posts for the Rule of Three Blogfest, get your butt over there!  Some really awesome writers turning out a ton of top-notch work.

2) If you stopped by to check out my story, see below, or click here.

3) I won't probably have much of an online presence this weekend, back on Monday.  So you know the rules: You can have one cookies and milk before you go to bed, but lights out at ten o'clock, no excuses.  :D

Hope you have an amazing weekend, and stay groovy while you're at it!

VINCENT: ...You know what they call a Quarter Pounder with Cheese in Paris?

JULES: They don't call it a Quarter Pounder with Cheese?

VINCENT: No, they got the metric system there, they wouldn't know what the fuck a Quarter Pounder is.

JULES: What'd they call it?

VINCENT: Royale with Cheese.

JULES: Royale with Cheese. What'd they call a Big Mac?

VINCENT: Big Mac's a Big Mac, but they call it Le Big Mac.

JULES: What do they call a Whopper?

VINCENT: I dunno, I didn't go into a Burger King.

12 bolts from the blue:

Anonymous said...

Say hello to Paris for me. I miss it so. Six years is too long a separation. Where do you plan to visit while there?

Melissa Sugar said...

The last time I was in Paris, my husband and I (not married then) attended a semester of law school overseas. Wow, I was young & oh so broke. I would love to see it again, but this time with champagne, 5 star hotels, gambling & The French Riveria -in addition to Paris. Has to be better than backpacks & hostels.

Have a great trip.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

I climbed the Eiffel Tower in cold, fall wind, too. It was exciting.
That is such a cool sketch. You've got more than one talent, for sure. The Musee d'Orsay is one of my favorite places.
But, really, the coffee, hot chocolate and baguette with brie are all the reason I need to drop in. Have a wonderful weekend.

jbchicoine said...

Hey, I didn't know you were and artist, too! Pretty good sketch!

As for Paris--kinda hard to wrap my mind around the place. Generally, I don't like big cities (well, I do like Boston, but it doesn't feel 'big'), but I would love an opportunity to like or dislike Paris first-hand! Have a great time. :)

Postman said...

Boy, just that picture alone is enough to get me going. You had some poetical things to say about Paris in the wintertime, JP...I might just have to check it out now!

WritingNut said...

Oooh.. Paris! I'm so excited for you, I've never been! I hope you have a wonderful trip :)

Jessie Humphries said...

That picture of Paris is breath taking. Oh jealousy!

Donna Hole said...

That sketch was great; but it really looks painful :)

I hope you are having a great trip :)


Draven Ames said...

Wow, I bet you are having fun in Paris. It would be amazing to see everything you are seeing. Someday, I'd love to backpack through Europe. Live it up, record it and remember it always.


Jon Paul said...

Joshua--Actually, we were more about eating something other than Italian food this
time out than we were about seeing the sights. We did manage to see a fair amount
though. Great fodder for a future post!

Melissa--I bet that was fun! My regret when I visit places like Paris is that I
can't stay longer, get to know what daily life is like.

Tricia--Yeah, that was all the reason we needed also.

Bridget--Thanks! There's no shaking Paris's big city feel, but it's a quaint big
city. :D

Postie--Definitely worth a stop in.

WritingNut--It was definitely a blast!

Jessie--It was almost that good in person. ;)

Donna--Had tons of fun!

Draven--We had a great time! It was kinda tough to come home!

If you are interested, my
Rule of Three Blogfest, Post Two
is up now.

Thanks guys for stopping in.

Jeremy Bates said...

i went to the catacombs when i was there.. spooky!

Jon Paul said...

Jeremy--We didn't make it to the catacombs this time out, but I've heard they're quite worth seeing. Had to save something for next time! ;)

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