Saturday, November 3, 2018

Bonjour, Paris!

One of my favorite films, "Funny Face," with Audrey Hepburn, Fred Astaire and Kay Thompson, finds that trio arriving in the City of Light and saying "hello" to many favorite places. I said, "I'm back!"


We arrived on our pretty purple WOW jet at 5:30 p.m., and our friend Jerry met us at the airport and set us up with our transportation cards. This gave us unlimited bus and metro rides for a given period of time (I think he did a week). Then it was off on the train to Paris and our hotel, Les Jardins d'Eiffel.


Jerry had booked the room for us and he not only got us a great room, but it also had a great view!


(And the view was just as good in the daytime, too!)


And he stocked it with the most beautiful floral bouquet and a basket with additional toiletries, candles, a bottle of wine, you name it!


I have to say, the flowers were such a terrific touch and we enjoyed them our entire stay.


After a toast to Paris, we set out to dinner in nearby Rue Cler and dined at Cafe du Marche.


I was ready for a tasty salad and this spot had it, along with some nice red wine for us to share. Then it was off to bed and a long rest!


The next morning we headed out, going to our metro station near Hotel des Invalides. There was quite a to-do going on there and I asked the policeman (after seeing President Macron on the large screens), "President Macron ici?" "Oui," he said. And that's all I understood except he wouldn't let us in! But we found the entrance to the park outside, heavily guarded and joined the crowd.


There were plenty of television cameras and news reporters and Macron and company were actually inside des Invalides' courtyard. It was singer Charles Aznavour's memorial service.


People were in tears, there was music and addresses. We watched quite awhile and continued on our way.


Our plan had been to visit Musee Jacquemart-Andre but when we arrived the line was long, so we decided to walk a bit and return later. We made our way toward Arc de Triomphe...


...and then onward for a snack and a little bread buying and window shopping!


It was a gorgeous day -- very warm and sunny -- and we couldn't resist poking around Place Victor Hugo a bit more.


But we were to meet Jerry at the Musee at 2, so back we went. The line had disappeared and we had no trouble getting in.


If you have mobility or other issues, there are wonderful benefits at the French museums. See the travel tips below for details on this. We got in for free.

And more on one man's passion next time!

Travel Tips:


  • Be on the lookout. You never know what you might see. It was quite interesting to be part of this crowd of French Aznavour fans who had gathered together to mourn his death. We couldn't understand a word but it was worth it.
  • Tickets to museums can be booked in advance. We didn't do this (with one exception) because we didn't want to be held to a tight schedule. But if we had, we wouldn't have had to wait in the line. Your call.
  • Jerry had told me I should bring a letter from my doctor indicating mobility issues but I didn't do this. Fortunately, he was very feisty or else I looked really miserable. Possibly both, because we were admitted at no charge. Apparently, with a doctor's note on letterhead, one who has trouble standing or walking can be admitted immediately to the museum with their companion and free for both. Next time, I will but I had thought I was improving before I left. I was wrong and next time will be more prepared.

Next time we'll see what a "few dollars" can get you in 19th century Paris! Or, "if you've got it, flaunt it."

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41 comments:

Sami said...

What a great view from your hotel room Jeanie :)
Don't know that museum you visited, but it's wonderful that people with mobility issues get in for free.
You were in the place at the right time for the Charles Aznavour memorial.

David Gascoigne said...

Jerry really seems to be a friend in the true sense of the word. I sometimes think we refer to people as friends who are in fact little more than acquaintances. I was a little amused by an incident recently. Someone contacted me regarding my (alleged) expertise in matters ornithological, and started the conversation by saying that he was acquainted with “our mutual good friend” so and so. The fellow to whom he was referring I have met perhaps five times! Paris is a wonderful city, I have enjoyed it each time I have visited it, but I must confess that I tire of cities after about three days. I have often taken refuge in the wooded parks of Paris and eschewed the tourist traps and their long lineups. The one thing I had also longed to do, and never will of course, was to be able to take in the Louvre in very small increments and really get to understand some of that glorious art. To do “the tour” in one day, or less, is akin to listening to all of Beethoven’s symphonies one after the other, followed by the string quartets, plus some of the incidental music and then claiming to have understood and appreciated it all. One of my memorable experiences in Paris was visiting Notre Dame, and hearing the father of a family of four, all there with him, repeatedly exclaim, “Sure ain’t San Diego!” Indeed it is not my good chap!

Jean R. said...

Jerry was a treasure to have in Paris. It's such a beautiful city with so many wonderful places to visit. I'm enjoying "tagging" along through your photos. And the desserts! My kind of heaven on earth.

Linda deV said...

You are a great travel guide. My first week house was right near you first picture. I miss Paris so much and would love to go back soon.

Great pics Jeanie.

Susie said...

Jeanie, I just read David's comment. I enjoyed it . I do not think great cities such as Paris can be done in a week or two. I have never been there, only in my dreams. I like the idea of just being part of the general crowds...not so much a tourist crowd. I had a good laugh at the end of David's comment. Wow, who compares Paris with San Diego? Ha. I love that you and your hubby had such an adventure . Blessings, xoxo, Susie

eileeninmd said...

Hello Jeanie, I love your views of Paris. It is a beautiful city. It is nice you had a easy time with your disability while touring. The shop window looks enticing and the market looks great too. I would like the cafes and the wine, lol. Great trip photos. Enjoy your weekedn!

Net - "It's a Wonderful Movie" said...

What an amazing trip! Enjoy every adventure along the way!

How cool that you came so close to seeing their President, Macron... he is such a great friend of America!

Take care... Enjoy the journey and all the sights!

Blessings! Net

Joyful said...

What a wonderful "I'm Back" post. Jerry did an awesome job of getting you ready for Paris. The food and weather and sites look fantastic. Thank you for the tips. I'm sure they will come in handy.

Linda @ A La Carte said...

So wonderful to have a friend who can help set things up for your visit. I love that cafe and ate there when I was in Paris. Such a beautiful view from you hotel. Enjoying all your photos! Aw, Paris!

Pam Jackson said...

Wow what an great trip you are on. I love traveling with you and others I blog with. Awesome...have a great time.

DUTA said...

Jerry is what we call "a friend indeed".
For me Paris is L'arc de Triomphe as replicas of it have been built in many cities around the world. One of them in Bucharest, Romania. The world loves triumphal arches and we are part of this world.

Valerie-Jael said...

What a great trip you had. Good that you had a friend there to smooth the way. Paris is such a wonderful place. Hugs, Valerie

Roses, Lace and Brocante said...

You’re in Paris - oh Jeanie how wonderful!
I know what you mean about being part of an event and being “with the crowd” it’s a special feeling especially in Paris!
Now I have to catch up on previous posts to see why you’re well🤒. Xx

William Kendall said...

Beautiful shots!

Aznavour was a national treasure.

My name is Erika. said...

Wow, that is excellent service. You are ;lucky to have Jerry for a friend. And that was cool to just find that memorial service. Maybe not the happiest of events but it is those spontaneous findings that add to the adventure, and maybe make it a greater than it would have been adventure. When I went to Paris is was February and so we didn't have horrible crowds, but your time of year looks much more pleasing. Enjoy your weekend. Hugs-Erika

Joanne Huffman said...

Great view and beautiful flowers. It all looks wonderful.

Lilbitbrit said...

Room with a view, always my favorite and what a view, you must have felt special. Those windows of cakes and goodies, such fun. Glad you had a great time.

Lynne said...

Paris . . .your favorite . ..
What a view . . night and day . . .
Great friend to have, in the know, tips, benefits.
Lovely welcoming flowers . . .
Can it be any better . . .

Iris Flavia said...

Hmmm, the Cafe du Marche looks beautiful!
We just had some French cheese guys over here... YUM!
Well. I like they have a young president in France. I hope he´ll do a good job - "the German politicians" only care about the money they get.
One worked 365 days in one year, yes...
Great you had not only a great view from your home atm but so much fun, too :-)
More, more, more stories and pics, please!

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

So glad to see you back on familiar ground. You found the perfect person to get you around Paris. Seeing the Charles Aznavour funeral was unexpected and fortuitous. One of those opportunities you would never have expected, and not planned, that's for sure.

I'm really enjoying your trip and look forward to seeing much more. I want to sit in the Cafe de Marche and enjoy a bit of non-alcoholic wine with you and Rick.

Bonnie said...

Jeanie, Thanks for all the specifics. Always like restaurant and hotel recommendations. Love the Rue Cler area. Last time we stayed in the Montpassee area so we were a long way from there. We stayed in this area once and we had a great view of the Eiffel Tower, too. However, our room was extremely tiny.
Your friend was wonderful. What a welcome with flowers, wine and lots of help.
I'm sorry you had issues but glad you managed to enjoy things. Just being in Paris is fun.

Running on empty said...


Lovely post, Jeanie.

Back when he died, I had a bad case of partial writer’s block on Charles Aznavour. Maybe I’d be feeling him more if I had an infatuation going on at the time myself. Whatever I wrote, listening to his songs, I wasn’t happy with enough to go to press. Strange. Tried playing him to Acerules, she reported feeling nothing much. I decided to try to write about him again another time. Then my blog app went down :(

Preppy Empty Nester said...

Tres bien, mon amie!! Wonderful post, sweet Jeanie. I enjoyed seeing Paris and that gorgeous flower arrangement through your eyes!

La Table De Nana said...

I am with david..Jerry sounds like a dear friend.
You are extremely lucky:)
Few and far between peeps like those.

Rue Cler..that's where we stayed..I loved that area and Montmartre the best:)

AnnMarie aka Vintage Junkie aka NaNa said...

How exciting! It all looks lovely and I look forward to 'traveling' with you through Paris! I am always encouraged to read travel stories to Europe. I have been afraid to go again because of the state of our world, but you gotta live, right? We are planning our trip to Italy for 2020.

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Darling Jeanie,BONJOUR! I have missed a few of your posts, with school demanding my time and energy. I simply can't get to all the emails and other blogs in the morning like once before. What a joy to have some down time this Sunday morning to enjoy your Paris trip!

shoreacres said...

I noted Aznavour's death and memorial service myself. How interesting to know that you were able to take part in person, so to speak. Lovely photos -- I know how much you had to be enjoying yourself.

Victoria Zigler said...

Having proof of disability often gets you in to places free or at a discounted price. Also, they often include a helper in that. Some places do it that the disabled person has to pay, but they get a helper allowed to come in with them for free. It's always worth asking.

Your trip sounds exhausting but fun so far.

Carol @Comfort Spring Station said...

Paris - the city of lights and dreams - thank you for sharing your beautiful trip with us. I loved every word and frame.

Nikki-ann said...

Wow, what a wonderful trip. It's been such a long time since I went to Paris.

Sandra Cox said...

Oh my. What a purrfectly wondrous vacay.

Judy at GoldCountryCottage said...

Oh, Jeanie. What a wonderful thing. A once in a life time trip and I'm glad you got to experience it..Happy Sunday..Judy

Marilyn Miller said...

This post beckons me to Paris once again. Oh how I love Paris. How lovely to have Jerry meet you at the airport and have your room reserved even with flowers and wine. How very special! Everything is lovely including the view, but so sorry you had problems walking.

Liz@ HomeandGardeningWithLiz said...

Wow how exciting! I’m not much of a traveler and don’t expect to ever get to Paris so I enjoy seeing pictures and reading stories like this! You were set up with a wonderful location for your hotel and it sounds like you guys are very natural at getting around.

Mary K.- The Boondocks Blog said...

How wonderful to be in Paris Jeanie! There is no doubt that you had a marvelous time. And that view from your window is spectacular. I am looking forward to seeing your trips to the museums.

Pam Richardson said...

Jeanie, with Paris being a favorite city of mine, I enjoyed reading this post so much. What a great benefit to have a friend meet you when you arrived and to have made all the arrangements for hotel, etc. You had a lovely view of the Eiffel Tower. I can imagine the pastries and my favorite, macrons. How cool that you happened upon the French president. Looking forward to more!

Sally Wessely said...

You are making me want to return to Paris. What a bonus it is to have a friend like Jerry! I’m enjoying seeing your photos and reading your tips. I’m looking forward to the next installment.

Barb said...

That was quite the view from your hotel, Jeanie! Lucky your to have a friend who can make arrangements for you. The photos are wonderful.

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

What a view! That's awesome that your friend spruced up the hotel room with things like flowers. What a special touch to make it extra welcoming. These pictures make me really really miss Paris! That city is such a sight to be seen. I'm sorry to hear that your feet gave you trouble but I am glad you had a feisty friend who is fluent in French to go to bat for you! :)

Red Rose Alley said...

Fantastic pictures, Jeanie. The café is so charming, and those desserts, oh my! I'd love one to go with my coffee right now. What a fabulous trip you had. I liked the picture of the view of the Eiffel in the daytime. People always seem to take it at night.

~Sheri

The French Hutch said...

Great location and what a great view came with your room. So many lovely pics brings back memories from our trips to Paris. You are so right, you never know what you’ll find yourself in the middle of while traveling. You had an interesting event. Sorry you forgot your letter from your doctor. It really makes it difficult to wait when you have any issues. Thanks for that tip, I need to remember that one!

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