I am looking at a year’s worth of photographs in this liminal week between Christmas and New Year.
Here are some images from the Channel Port of Boulogne-sur-Mer, a medieval French walled town, with narrow cobbled streets. We walked along the battlements, which were a mile, to the delight of Merry the Labradoodle, and enjoyed a market garden organised on the theme of the 7 deadly sins—green for envy, red for anger, yellow for sloth, purple for pride…
All photographs in this post were taken on my iPhone 6+ incidentally. Not always high quality, but you will get the flavour!
Merry came on holiday with us, and loved it!
Green for envy. Loved this market garden!
Merry loved these cabbages–edible beauty. The world needs more of this if we are to cope with climate change.
A French artist copies the Basilica in front of him.
I have long wanted to explore the Basilica of St-Denis, the birthplace of Gothic architecture, in particular, of stained glass, under the leadership of the 12th century Abbot Suger . He decided to fill his Abbey Church of St. Denis, near Paris, with “the most radiant windows” so that worshippers, surrounded by rainbowed light would feel closer to God. Medieval craftsman, transformed sand into jewels, bringing in More Light, the credo of Gothic architecture.
The Basilique Royale de Saint-Denis was the burial place of the Kings and Queens of France for a millennium, and we explored “the necropolis” with swarms of French school children, who discovered the Kings and Queens they had studied in history with yelps of delight.
Incidentally, there was a terrorist attack and a raid at Saint-Denis a week after we left, and France closed all exits, so we were grateful for safety, and that we got to enjoy the Cathedral in a peaceful, relaxed way!
Paris has more dogs per capita than any other European city, and most of its fabulous gardens are dog friendly. So we went with Merry to the Jardin du Luxembourg, which was ablaze in autumn colours, backlit with brilliance.
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Another cathedral I’ve long wanted to see is Chartres, and we finally made the 75 km drive to Chartres, and it was well worth it. A magical walk by the canals, and then a trek up the hill to the Cathedral with glorious stained glass, all in “Chartres blue,” and beautiful rose windows. We then wandered around the medieval city, sampling…St. Jacques scallops and risotto for dinner, and a grazing lunch of handmade chocolates, delicious artisan bread, pain au chocolate, macarons
The labyrinth for walking meditations outside Chartres.
And here are some images from the Bois De Boulougne, and the Jardin de Bagatelle