Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Paris Cemeteries

A couple of weeks ago, we drove to Paris for the weekend. It's so close. I was the map reader that got us there, and I traced out the Arrondisements in a circle with my index finger while my husband drove. I never knew that they spiraled out from the center like that. I suppose I had never bothered to study a map of Paris before.

We left our umbrellas in the car, stayed in the 20th and took the subway across the city and back again, had cocktails at the Place de la Bastille, found Victor Hugo's house, got caught in a downpour in the Latin Quarter. We stood in a phone booth (thank god Paris still has phone booths - perhaps they'll leave them as 20th century relics for future historians to point to) while the rain pelted the streets and finally decided to make a run for it, ending up at a little Algerian restaurant. We drank Algerian wine and spoke broken French. It was some of the best wine I've ever had.

Mostly, we saw cemeteries. I know. There's the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, the Champs Elysee, and we passed our time among the dead. But it was cold and rainy, a fall weekend in the summer, perfect for cold stones and iron gates.

Pere Lachaise

With the Tour Montparnasse

Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir

The ever-loved Gainsbourg


  1. Sara Fitzgerald Hemingway. I'm totally seduced.

    (And I didn't know Sartre and de Beauvoir ended up sharing the same quarters after all.)

  2. I've never made it to the cemeteries of Paris. It is so strange to read of their impressions of France hundreds of years ago, and then be able to stand above their bones.

  3. I love the mental image of huddling in a phone booth while the rain pours outside!