Wednesday, June 24, 2015

In the Latin Quarter with Erin et James

Erin and James - "Pont des Arts" (Bridge of Arts)
10:17 AM - Last June, we visited the Latin Quarter with Erin and James from Texas. At the end of the route, we passed by the "Pont des Arts". But where are the famous love padlocks
Too heavy for the bridge, Paris replaced them temporarily by panels painted by artists (while waiting for the definitive transparent panels).
Look at the photo above. The Arms of Paris were represented in a funny way, a banana for the boat and a bone for the mast!

A journalist of the Swiss Television accompanied us and realized this report:

A beautiful stroll in Paris.

We actually studied the pediment of the Pantheon. Here is the photo taken in the video:

Erin and James - The Panthéon

"TO GREAT MEN THE GRATEFUL HOMELAND" is displayed on the Pantheon, monument to the glory of the great Men of French history. The crypt welcomes a large number of famous persons, Voltaire, Rousseau, Victor Hugo, Emile Zola, Jean Moulin... Many men but only four women: Marie Curie, Sophie Berthelot (wife of the chemist), Germaine Tillion and Geneviève de Gaulle-Anthonioz, both last ones entered the Pantheon last May. One day, maybe we shall see another inscription: " TO GREAT WOMEN AND GREAT MEN... "

Let us look closer at the pediment (in the report, we present the French Cock):

The Panthéon - On the left of the Nation, the civil society, on the right, the military representation (even if the high-ranking military figures rest in the Invalides like Napoléon or Foch)

After the Pantheon, we continue our route in the Latin Quarter (Cf. meaning of the name Latin Quarter), after the beautiful "place de la Contrescarpe", we join the Arenas of Lutèce going through a pretty flowered staircase (in harmony with the running wear!) :

Erin - "Rue Monge" (Monge street)

In the video, we evoke Montaigne's foot which gives luck:

Erin - "Rue des Ecoles" (Street of the Schools)

The story is funny. The students actually come to caress the foot of the philosopher Montaigne and formulate a wish (success in the examinations thanks to the knowledge of Montaigne?).
Before the current bronze statue, was a marble statue. This statue was created in 1933 by Paul Landowski. Here is the photo of its inauguration:

"Rue des Ecoles" - Statue of Montaigne - 1933

Made with a nice white marble, the statue attracted graffitis, paint, ink, lipstick... The right foot touched permanently and unceremoniously, was broken numerous times.
The statue had to be so often restored that Paris preferred to replace it by an exact copy but with a more robust material, bronze!
Robust, well, look at the patina of the shoe...

For another story about a bronze then marble statue, look this at this article where we speak about the Statue of Louis XIII "place des Vosges".

Merci Erin ! Merci James !
And thank you Michel from the Swiss Television!
The route of the tour:

Thursday, June 4, 2015

From the square of the United States to the Palais Royal with Eather and Chris

Chris and Heather - "Place des Etats Unis" (Place of the US) - Memorial to the American volunteers
10:02 AM - With Heather and Chris, runners living in Virginia (USA), we left the "place Charles de Gaulle-Etoile" to join the "Palais Royal" and its magnificent garden.

Along the way, we crossed the "place des Etats-Unis"(square of the United States). Do you know the story of this name?
Originally, this square was called the "Place of Bitche" (a city of Lorraine, France). The ambassador of the United States came to settle down there in 1881. Impossible to reside in a square named Bitche, "Bitch" being a rather vulgar English slang word. Paris agreed to rename the place "Place of the United States" (the "place de Bitche" being now situated in the 19th district of Paris).

The new name is well appropriate for the location, numerous points of this place are indeed connected to the United States of America, the statue of La Fayette and Washington shaking hands, the public garden Thomas Jefferson in the center, the statue of the American dentist Horace Wells who participated in the discovery of the anesthesia, the monument to the American Volunteers (photo above), etc.

This monument pays tribute to the American volunteers enlisted in the French Foreign Legion and who succumbed by fighting during the World War I. Among them, the poet Alan Seeger.

We followed our route and enjoyed our first beautiful point of view of the Eiffel Tower, the avenue of President Wilson:

Heather and Chris - Avenue of the President Wilson

Avenue of President Wilson, a reference to the United States again. This avenue leads itself to the "Place d'Iéna" in the middle of which appears a George Washington's equestrian statue!

Heather and Chris - Eiffel tower

New stop, in the front of the Eiffel Tower this time. Notice the ball between the first one and the second floor. It is an huge tennis ball! Indeed, it is the period of "Roland Garros" tennis tournament.

Having enjoyed the banks of the Seine and its numerous magnificent sites, we paused in the Louvre. Look at the Marly Courtyard:

Heather and Chris - The Louvre - the Marly courtyard (The flash did not work!)

In this blog, we spoke about the famous horses of Marly during a Paris visit with Mary.
After leaving the museum, we found the sun again within the magnificent garden of the Palais Royal (many roses!):

Merci Chris ! Merci Heather !

The route of the tour :

Friday, April 24, 2015

A new Running Tour in Paris with Cori

Cori - "Jardin des Plantes" (Garden of the Plantes)
8:05 AM - Do you remember Cori? We ran together in April 2012. It rained that time, which had not prevented us from making an attractive run in Paris

In this month of April 2015, the weather is beautiful and we can enjoy the sun. Although we pass again by the "Pont des Arts" (Bridge of Arts), we choose a very different route. Compare both views of the "Pont des Arts" in April, 2012 and April, 2015:

Cori - "Pont des Arts" - April 2012 and April 2015

Look at the sides of the "Pont des Arts". We have already spoken a lot about the famous Padlocks of Love. In 2012, they are already present and begin to be many but not still in the point to make bend and fall the railings which carry them.

In 2015, the railings fell and were replaced many times: the padlocks placed on the railings, themselves covered by other padlocks, finished to be too heavy.

Paris decided to act: at first, the padlocks will be replaced in May by panels painted by artists then, in September, by transparent Plexiglas panels. Now, this April, it is temporary wooden panels which line the bridge (graffitis did not delay covering them).

For our new circuit in Paris, we favored parks and gardens. What a pleasure to run under the sun there. We discover:

The "Jardin du Luxembourg" and its magnificent "Fontaine Medicis" (Medici Fountain)
Cori - "La Fontaine Medicis"

"Les Arènes de Lutèce" (Arenas of Lutetia), with soccer players, gladiators having left for quite a long time :)
Cori - "Les Arènes de Lutèce"

"La Grande Serre du Jardin des Plantes" (the Great Greenhouse of the Garden of the Plantes) (go there, a real jungle in Paris!):
Cori - "La grande serre du Jardin des Plantes"

Merci Cori ! 

The route of the tour:

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Paris, an old museum? No! Let us discover the Parisian Modern Art with Valerie

Valerie - Garden of the "Palais Royal" (Royal Palace)
6:52 AM - Valerie, fast runner from Texas, chose Paris Running Tour to discover various aspects of Paris.

We sometimes say that Paris looks like a museum, a magnificent museum where everything is unchanging and everything remain still...
By following our sports route, we certainly saw numerous magnificent monuments and historic buildings which we wish eternal but also various places which present a new Paris in sync with the modern art.

As the Eiffel Tower at the time of its construction, too modern for some, these new creations were often the object of controversies.

Next to the classic but magnificent garden of the "Palais Royal", is a work of art which did not please everybody during its creation. Look at this strange view from the sky:

It is the work of the artist Daniel Buren, "Les deux plateaux" created in 1986, usually called the Columns of Buren:

Valerie - The "Colonnes de Buren", in the heart of the "Palais Royal"

Every column seems to grow, pushed by a unique root (visible under the railing).
An attractive courtyard surrounded by the more classic columns of the "Palais Royal"...

Just a step from the columns of Buren, at the exit of the Royal Palace, is another contemporary creation, the "Kiosque des Noctambules" (Kiosk of Night birds), created by Jean-Michel Othoniel in 2000:

Valerie - The "Kiosque des Noctambules"

This work of art is a metro entrance of the station "Palais Royal". If you go to the "Palais Royal", compare it with the other exit of the same subway station, situated 100 meters from there, in front of the Louvre, in style "Art nouveau", created in the 1900s, modernity of that time...

Another surprising view from the sky. What is this work?

The Fountain Stravinsky of Nikki de saint Phalle and Jean Tinguely (1983), tribute to the composer Stravinsky. Another beautiful example of contrast between modernity and classicism (look also at the old Church Saint Merri, probably modern at its time):

Valerie - The "Fontaine Stravinsky" also called "Fontaine des Automates"
(Usually, the automatons turn on themselves and throw water)

Ongoing controversy: the "Tour Triangle"!

A very nice, sports and cultural running!

Merci Valerie ! 

The route of the tour:

Thursday, March 19, 2015

The oldest monument of Paris with Laura, Marni, Peter, Marshall and Jason

Marni, Marshall, Laura, Jason et Peter - Jardin du Palais Royal
7:00 AM - Marni, Marshall, Laura, Jason and Peter are runners-friends coming from the United States.
Paris is still a little bit chilly in this early spring. Magnolias begin to bloom, as here in the garden of the "Palais Royal" (Royal Palace).

Our sports visit begins in the garden of the Tuileries to arrive quickly at "place de la Concorde", in front of the oldest monument of Paris, the Obelisk of Luxor:

Jason, Marni, Laura, Marshall and Peter - "Place de la Concorde" - Obelisk of Luxor

The Obelisk which we can see in the center of the "place de la Concorde" is more than 3000 years old. It comes from Egypt. 
The Pharaoh Ramses II had made two obelisks in the entrance of the Luxor temple, temple placed in the center of the old city of Thebes. The obelisk of "la Concorde" is one of them.

In 1830, the viceroy of Egypt Mehemet-Ali offers to France the obelisks of Luxor. 
Then begins, for the first obelisk, an adventure which will last more than 6 years: the preparation of the operation, the cutting down of the obelisk, its transport towards Paris and its erection "place de la Concorde" in 1836, with all the troubles such an expedition can generate (heat, diseases, expectation of the Nile flood, navigation and transport difficulties, etc.)  

Cutting down of the Obelisk in 1831 (the other obelisk is situated to the left by looking at the temple)

Erection of the Obelisk in 1836 "place de la Concorde" 
(The king Louis-Philippe and 200 000 Parisians attend the "show")

The other part of the "present", the second Obelisk, remained in Luxor, France not wishing to launch again such an operation!

Our visit continues along the Seine, the left bank then the right bank again. We cross the river Seine running on the "Pont des Arts", the famous footbridge:

Marshall, Laura, Marni, Jason and Peter - "Pont des Arts"
In the background of the photo above, we can admire the "Galerie du bord de l'eau" of the Louvre. Did you know that in this long corridor, king Henri IV organized fox hunting for his son, future Louis XIII?

We finish our running by returning by the garden of the Tuileries, very quiet in this morning of March:

Merci Peter, Marni, Marshall, Jason and Laura !

The route of the tour :

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Under the Eiffel tower with Rachel

Under the Eiffel Tower - Far off the Palais de Chaillot and the garden of Trocadéro
7:32 AM - Rachel, from Wales, is a regular runner with very good results... After the running tour in Paris, she arrived recently second woman of a half marathon.
At present, she prepares for the next London Marathon.
In this beginning of March, the sun is with us for an attractive tour of Paris by running.

Look at the photo above, we are just under the Eiffel Tower. Early morning in March, the place is very quiet. Compare with the crowd that we can find on Easter Mondays for example or on a summer weekend there... Running early morning in Paris is a delight!

Far off, on the other side of the Seine, we can recognize the majestic "Palais de Chaillot" which was built for the World Fair of 1937, last World Fair in Paris.

The Palace of Chaillot replaced the Palace of Trocadéro built in the same place, that time for the World Fair of 1878:

Aerial view of the "Palais du Trocadéro" - 1934

By the way, do you know what "Trocadéro" means?

It is a fort which is situated in Cadiz in Spain and the place of a French victory; France came to help Spain to restore the absolute monarchy in 1823 (the king Louis XVIII reigns at that time in France).
The Palace of the Trocadéro built in 1878 (and then the "Place du Trocadéro") owes its name to a royalist victory!

We went for running early, accompanied by the rising sun which lit for us the magnificent monuments of Paris:

The Arc de Triomphe. We are in his shadow, the sun beginning to light the Champs-Elysées

Palais Galliera
Museum of the fashion with until, August 23rd, 2015, the exhibition dedicated to Jeanne Lanvin

The Eiffel tower - We are at the "Palais de Chaillot"!

The Alexandre III bridge with in the back the statue symbolizing the France of the Renaissance. At the top  of the pylon, one of the four Fames: The Fame of the War. 
These four statues were covered with gold leaves in 1989.

The Bridge of the Arts and in the back, the "Galerie du bord de l'eau" of the Louvre - The "Pont des Arts", known these last years for all the padlocks which where put there by the loving tourists, is at present protected by wooden panels. These panels covered by graffitis spoil a little the beauty of the place. It should be temporary.

The Palais Royal and its famous Columns of Buren ("Les deux plateaux"). The "Théâtre Ephémère" (short-lived theater) now disappeared. This wooden theater had welcomed temporarily the troop of the "Comédie Française" during the works of the "Palais Royal". We can see again the garden of the "Palais Royal" through the columns.
The Garden of the Tuileries - Our shadows are still very long!

Merci Rachel ! 
We wish you a great London Marathon!

The route of the tour:

Thursday, January 1, 2015

The Parisian running competitions in 2015

Start of the Paris Marathon de Paris 2010
Happy New Year 2015 ! A new year for the running competitions in Paris
It is always a great pleasure to run on the Parisian roadway freed of cars, to be able to run on the avenue of the Opera or at the foot of the Eiffel Tower, in the woods of Boulogne and Vincennes (which belong to Paris), to go down the Champs Elysées running the first kilometer of the marathon...
As every year now, we propose the 2015 list of the Parisian competitions, all those which take place in Paris.

Happy New Year!

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