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Published: August 2nd 2009
As far as I can remember, I always wanted to visit Monet's house. I am a big Monet fan and love his landscape paintings. One of my favourite paintings is of the waterlilies pond in the Japanese gardens of his home. I was very excited seeing the spot where he painted this! I decided to join a tour one afternoon. There were six of us in the minibus and we made our way to Giverny. I got chatting to Gisele, from Brazil, and Francie, from New Zealand, on the tour. It took us around an hour to reach the village. We received our VIP entry tickets and it was great that we did not have to queue! Makes a nice change! We had around two hours to look around the house and gardens. I walked around with Francie and we exchanged travel stories. Francie is doing a 4 month tour of Asia, Europe and North Africa. It was great seeing the water lilies and the Japanese bridge in person after seeing them on prints! The grounds were beautiful and well looked after. We went inside the house and there were a lot of Japanese prints hung on the walls.
At Monet's Home, Giverny
Monet must have been inspired and influenced by the Japanese culture hence reflecting in his home and paintings. I do not think that he ever visited Japan, which was a shame. I also loved the cheerful bright colours in his house. Afterwards, I spent a fortune on souvenirs in the shop and Francie and I had yummy homemade icecream in the village! Eventually, all of us returned to Paris after what has been a great afternoon! It was great to get out of Paris and see some of the French countryside en route to Monet's home. Eiffel Tower
Last time I was in Paris, I was put off by the long queues for going up. However, I decided to visit the tower first thing with a hope that the queues were not unbearably long! I got there for 9.30 am and there were already long queues! But at another pier, the queue was not as long so I joined them. Whilst I was queuing, a professional photographer was taking souvenir photos of us all with a replica of an Eiffel Tower! Me being cynic with those things was not bothered but still I cooperated. Surprisingly, I did
At Monet's Home, Giverny
not queue that long to go up and rode up to the 2nd floor. I was not bothered about going up to the 3rd floor as I had understood that it gets very claustrophobic, with which I suffer mildly with. I did not stay long on the 2nd floor because the viewing platforms were very busy and after a visit to the souvenir shop, I went down. I did not even bother stopping at the 1st floor where there was a centenary exhibition as I was anxious to get down. The views from the Eiffel Tower were great especially of the southern Banlieues and seeing the Place du Trocadero, the River Seine and in the distance, La Defense, Paris's Business District. I must admit that I preferred the views from Notre Dame Cathedral because of the historic connection even if the Eiffel Tower is unique in its own right. I was very glad to go up. Out of curiousity, I decided to check my professional photo of me at the boutique...and to my surprise, I liked it very much so I bought two photos! One for myself and another one for my parents...expensive but priceless with the fact that it
is very rare I like photos of myself! Trocadero and Palais de Tokyo
I visited the Place du Trocadero. The place contains the Palais de Chaillot, built for the World Fair in 1937. The architecture is amazing along with the quotations inscripted on the buildings by Paul Valery. The view from the Trocadero with the fountains and Eiffel Tower in the background were good photo opportunities. The Palais de Chaillot houses a number of museums. I also explored the Palais de Tokyo, again built for the 1937 World Fair. I enjoyed taking in the atmosphere and did some coffee drinking and people watching from the top! Palais de Tokyo now houses the Paris's museum of modern art. I was fascinated with the other architectural buildings in the arrondissement.
Eventually, good things have to come to an end with the time to pack and leave the city! It was great being in Paris again. During my time, I was not 100%!a(MISSING)s I was nursing a mild head cold - fortunately, nothing serious of concern, considering, and I am feeling better now! This meant I had to take it easier than the norm and even had
Monet's Home, Giverny
an afternoon trying to catch up on the lack of sleep I had on the trip. The flight home was uneventful even if I wrote to Jet 2 complaining about the appalling in-flight service I received! I plan to return to Paris in the autumn but now I got Alicante to look forward to in less than a month's time and is better than not travelling for eight months!
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