Saturday, August 06, 2011

Paris hasn't changed much in the past millenium or two

Obligatory Seine photo #1

I thought I'd just copy here my journal entry from yesterday afternoon:
August 5, 4:45
I've been wandering the Marais area all afternoon. I wound up continuing to shop--buying some old paper and an embroidery stamp at an antique shop in the Village St. Paul area which was, the shop I mean, stuffed to the brim with small items--sewing supplies, linens, buttons, items for school kids of earlier years, etc. While I was in the coffee house earlier, I had read through a picture book about the author's school days in the 50's and many of the things he mentioned were for sale there in the shop. I then found a "vintage", ie used, clothing store. I've been in search of a skirt as I overpacked shirts but found one pair of jeans, one pair shorts (not appropriate for Paris) and one dress wasn't quite the right mix of clothes. I didn't find a skirt that fit in the store but I got three great floral short sleeved blouses--one by Cacharel--probably from the 80's. I'm happy. While waiting for the changing room, I watched some French ladies browsing through the dresses--they favored red ones-- and some Asian (probably Japanese) girls trying on shorts. They were giggling in the dressing room for the longest time and left an enormous mess of empty hangers. I asked the sales girl and she said they did spend a fair bit which I hope justified the extra work they left her.
I was also able to visit a real antique store, mostly carrying iron work. The owner kindly educated me about "les heurtoirs"--door knockers but I couldn't afford the lovely item he showed me--a 17th century piece priced at 1700 Euros or so. It would have been so nice on my door too. He showed me one in a Druot catalog (like Sotheby's) of a hand shaped knocker--also 17th Century)--beautifully done with veins and finger nails evident on the iron hand. That went for 15,000 Euros. I still want a hand door knocker but I'll have to look for a "cheap" 19th Century one. As for now I only have a collection of pictures of them--I still find them quaint.

Door Knocker

This journal entry was written while drinking Perrier in a Scottish pub. The bar man turns out to have been English not Scottish but after more than a week in France he felt like a compatriot. Sometimes my brain feels tired from straining to think in French. BTW the music in the bar was Dylan. It is rare to hear French music playing in a shop or cafe.


phonelady said...

You write and I picture all of it in my mind . Have a great time in Paris my dear and enjoy it . I wish I was there with you .

Blu said...

Love the green door

Jean-Pierre:Frappe frappe!
Armand:Qui est là?
Armand:Loste qui?
Jean-Pierre:Oui, malhereusement.

Teo said...

Lovely entry! Felt like reading from a book :)

I still keep my eyes open for your door knocker. So far no luck though. Now I'm thinking maybe they don't stay too long at the fleas. I'd never guess they were so valued.