Wednesday, October 22, 2008

My European Trip 13 - Paris II

(Sketching when sitting in the Luxemburg Park)

Mais j'étais trop jeune pour savoir l'aimer.
But I was too young to know how to love her...
-- The Little Prince

Quiet Corners in Paris

Big cities mean crowds, confusion, hustle, bustle and noise -- they're like a giant with chronic indigestion. Parisians face the rumbling daily reality and seem to feel they have three options: put up with it, cocoon cozily at home, or get out. (New Yorkers share the same options. Having been in NY for almost two months, I finally started to get used to its rumbling reality. I still vividly remember how I was waken up from unknown noise in the early morning on my first day.)

The madding crowd is a predictable beast, rushing from one trendy, new, hip, must-see spot to the next. When it comes to still backwaters, to uncluttered nooks (a hidden, secluded spot) and noiseless crannies, the crowds simply shy away, uninterested.

Crowds draw crowds.

Quiet places stay quiet.

In Paris, you actually could have more than three options. What you need is a little bit spirit of exploration. At least, I found tranquil beauty in these places.

1. Mini garden behind a church, which is close to the City Hall.

Saint Merri's Garden

2. Luxemburg Park, a beautiful spot with a pleasant green-garden atmosphere.


3. Walking along the Seine River


4. Public library, always a good place to check emails and rest mind.


5. Unknown antique shop, with a good companion like Tintin's dog, Snowy.


5. An ignored corner at the Versailles.


6. Roof garden at the Pompidou Center, where you could get a bird's-eye view of the whole Paris, including Eiffel Tower and Basilique du Sacre Coeur.


7. Watching a little princess playing at a fountain in the royal garden of Versailles .


What is nothing for the common people is probably everything for you. Open your eyes and heart, and you will always find beauty and tranquility in the mundane world.

Love is the simplicity of being sensitive.


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