a night at the opera

…and a full day of tromping around paris. rick and i took different directions this morning, rick feeling a bit under the weather and me up way too early. i wanted to check out more area on the “right bank” which includes parts of the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th arrondissements and i think i hit them all. mostly a sight seeing and discovery tour for myself, unfortunately one of the things i wanted to do was visit the jewish history museum but i got there 2 hours before they opened. i did find a lot of interesting places, fountain, churches, buildings etc all documented with a ton of pictures again (they’re for me).

rick on the other hand wanted to get into more detail on notre dame cathedral (his third visit since we arrived) and explore a bit of the left bank. he also spent some time at the jewish deportation memorial, an underground exhibit on the isle de cite. here’s some text from wikipedia on the memorial:

“The Mémorial de la Déportation is a memorial to the 200,000 people deported from Vichy France to the Nazi concentration camps during the Second World War. It is in Paris, France on the site of a former morgue, underground behind Notre Dame on Ile de la Cite. It was designed by French modernist architect, writer, teacher, and town planner Georges-Henri Pingusson and opened in 1962.

Pingusson intended that its long and narrow subterranean space convey a feeling of claustrophobia.”

we both headed home early in the afternoon for similar reasons…frustration at not finding a public toilet!!! there are lots of them, but never when you really need one.

we also needed naps to help us through the evening as we are off to the opera garnier (you may know it from the “phantom of the opera”) to see a ballet.

it is a magnificent building of baroque splendor…it oozes opulence and pretension (it was marvelous) by the gallon. we had loge seats (semi-private box) which we’d bought before leaving on the trip. cheap, but fancy seats (20 euro each) looking down on the stage and the rest of the audience. i think we’d have had a better view though if we’d bought the really cheap seats in the gods as we would have had a straight on view. we forgot the camera so i bought a cheap kodak disposable that i hope captured some of what we saw. i also took some shots with my phone, including a couple of videos. the place is gilded to the hilt and has an incredible chandelier and ceiling painted by Marc Chagall yet again another contrast of modern and classic melding together.

the ballet was “hommage à jerome robbins” with four parts, including classic, contemporary, modern and, if you can imagine, slapstick. i found three of the four pieces to be entertaining with great dancing, the slapstick left me a little flat. music was from ravel and chopin along with a young composer, nico muhly and a the choreographer, benjamin millepied who is the same age as my son providing what i thought was the best piece of dance.

it’s past midnight and time for some shut eye, we had a very late dinner with wine…of course and mousse chocolate, can’t remember the last time that dinner ended at 11:30 p.m.

bon soir.

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