So today’s post (which is what I did yesterday) is about the largest museum in the world, the Louvre.I actually got lost on my way there. I saw this..
You come out of the mall that is attached to the subway and Bam, there is an enormous church that youève never heard of. Why haven’t you heard of it, because Paris has no shortage of crazy big, famous amazing churches. This one was built between 1532 and 1642. To put that in context, it was finished 43 years before Bach was born and right around the time when Jacques Cartier arrived in the Gaspé Peninsula and claimed the land for France (1534). This church is as old as the beginning of the written history of the land now called Canada. It’s 335 years older than Canada….Mind blown!
The front of the church resembles Notre Dame Cathedral. Wikipedia tells me, that “The eclectic design features both Renaissance-era decorative elements and a classic gothic design. Its unfinished appearance is oddly charming.” You know, because it looks soooooo unfinished. I think they forgot to ornately decorate that one part of that stone over there. How unfinished!
For those of you who are oganistas, aka organ enthusiasts (Phil, I’m lookin at you), the church has over 8000 pipes and it was used by famous composers such as Franz Listz and Hector Berlioz to compose many of their key works. Sorry, didn’t see the organ. Remember this is just me passing by on my way to the Louvre. Oh and also…
The next building I run into is this one…also highly impressive.
Then I pass a palace (Perrault’s Colonnade, below)…cause, there’s like 15 palaces in Paris. Although if you count Ïle-de-France and Versaillles, which are each only approximately 20-25 km away from the centre of Paris, the palace count goes up to 31.
Then I walk for what seems like forever, I get lost (actually I was going the right way I had it in my mind that the museum couldn’t possible be a building that was 5 blocks long. so I turned the other way and then found my favourite part and the most Romantic part of Paris,. By Romantic, I mean my idealized version of Paris, the city as I imagined it before I came and as I’ve seen it portrayed in movies. The Paris of An American in Paris, or Funny Face, or Charade, and I was completely engrossed in the little trinket shops on the banks of the Seine. There, they have things such as old postcards, some with messages of love to friends, some still blank, but printed as early as 1900. They sell copies of old books, plays, and poetry. Some sell artwork and jewelery and trinkets like old pocket watches and binoculars, others sell old copies of maps of Paris, or the plans for the Eiffel Tower. Some sell old pictures of people in Paris, not even famous people, just people. I must go back there tomorrow…so many curiousities!
Finally, I get turned back around and I find myself walking through the gates of the Louvre.
Just to make you aware of the grandeur of the place, this picture shows only half of one of the entrances. You see the buildings on the other side, through the archways, that is still part of the Louvre. In every crevasse, in every ceiling, above every window, there is some ornately beautiful element that was crafted by an artist. For example, here is part of the inside of one of the archways.