Edit Blog Post
Published: August 2nd 2009
It has been eight months since travelling abroad and a trip was well overdue. So after an hour and a half flight delay and bumping into two old friends, Suzette and Wanda, we eventually got into Paris late. I travelled with Suzette and Wanda on the RER train to Gare du Nord where I got off and walked to my hostel. Fortunately, the hostel is open 24/7 and had no problems checking in. I booked myself in a dorm to save costs and shared the room with two friendly Korean girls, Soo-yeon and Yu-na. Despite not sleeping well throughout the trip and also being noisy outside, the hostel was conveniently located for the amenities and attractions. I spent just under a week in Paris. I did some cool and interesting things and the highlights shared over two blogs. Notre Dame de Paris
I joined the queue to go up Notre Dame Cathedral and after 40 minutes, I got to go up. I admired the gothic architecture, the gargoyles and the great city views down below. Since studying Pugin and church architecture in my humanities course, I have come to appreciate church architecture even more. Later on in the
A cheeky gargoyle looking out!
day, I had a look inside the cathedral and loved the glass stained windows. I am sure Pugin would have been inspired with the Cathedral's design in his time! Hamman Pacha
One afternoon, I went off the "tourist trail" to visit a Hamman, a North African spa. There are a lot of Hammans in Paris and are very popular with the Parisians. It is not a cheap experience but nice as a one off treat. I paid around 60 Euros for a package which comprised of the use of the steam room, showers, sauna, jacuzzi, use of the quiet room, sundries and a gommage (a body scrub). They are places which do not see many tourists and you need to have knowledge of French to experience and appreciate the rituals. I was teamed up with an Indian assistant who did my gommage and spoke English, which helped the language barrier a bit. The gommage was great and having 36 years of dead skin rubbed off me! This was a first and certainly will not be the last! I am thinking of which Hamman I would like to visit on my next Paris trip! After relaxing in the
Hamman, I visited the calm room where I read, updated my diary and enjoyed the yummy North African delicacies and mint tea! Picasso Museum
In my current humanities course, I studied some of the Picasso's paintings and was keen to appreciate more of his works through visiting the museum. At the museum, I was fascinated with the mirrors, used to cover the museum's renovations that were happening at the time, and its reflections. In fact, this was the highlight of my visit because I found the museum disappointing. I do not think now that I am a fan of Picasso after thinking I was. I was expecting to see a lot of the cubism work he did and I learned so much about. I saw a few pictures featuring this, which were good, but rest of his works were not to my taste. I also saw a couple of wooden objects (from New Caledonia) and the Grebo mask (from Ivory Coast) which were referred in the course materials when I studied Benin Art. Despite my disappointment, I would recommend the museum for big Picasso fans. After my museum visit, I went to a nearby square to relax
View from the top (Eiffel Tower in the distance).
and have a picnic lunch. It was cool people watching and enjoying brie in a fresh baguette washed down with lovely house wine! My next installment is in the next blog
Tot: 0.156s; Tpl: 0.047s; cc: 12; qc: 24; dbt: 0.0135s; 1; m:saturn w:www (18.104.22.168); sld: 2;
; mem: 1.2mb