Wednesday, March 28, 2012

The Doors Of Paris

Strolling the streets (and passageways) of Paris, what impressed us most were the wonderful, wide double doorways.

(photos courtesy MC Farine)

I asked our friend and fellow blogger MC Farine (in Paris at the same time) about these entrances and she had this fascinating story. "This door is called a porte cochère. What you have there is a detail of une porte cochère (so named because typically wide and high enough for a coche — a carriage to be driven into the courtyard.")

(photo courtesy MC Farine)
While the doors in the following photos are not true "porte cochère", nevertheless, they are spectacular.

"Sunday Brunch"

The doors vary widely, some new, some very old, some painted, some natural. 

Saturday, March 17, 2012

London #2

On schedule (as we usually do), we're getting behind posting pictures. We have good intentions, but as we mentioned before, things --- like exciting trips --- get in the way. Although we're now back in Paris (for a few more days) we still have great memories of our (all too few) days in London.

A familiar sight to BBC viewers is this shot of Big Ben, Parliament and the Westminster Bridge over River Thames. The location is often seen as a backdrop for TV reports from London.

County Hall Bakery is a proper, almost "dainty" place for coffee, tea, treats and meals. Parisian macaroons seem to have caught the fancy of everyone in London.

A wider shot of the Houses of Parliament...and the nearly The Eye....the city's newest landmark structure.

On a clear you can see far --- and take some amazing shots --- from high atop the Eye. It takes half an hour for each pod (which can hold up to 25 people) to make a complete rotation. It moves slowly so there's no sensation of movement, but peering over the side is a dizzying experience.

Yes, he was there --- one of only a few pictures of "us" on the trip.

Brick houses with lovely yards and flowers in Kew, on the way to Kew Gardens.

The color of the season is yellow at Kew Gardens, where thousands and thousands of daffodils provided most of the Spring color.

Purple pansies in a pot outside the Palm House looking down Syon Vista

The only thing disturbing the tranquility of the Gardens --- nearly once ever 1.5 minutes --- are low jets on final for landing at Heathrow. Gerry's a plane buff and he enjoyed seeing these gigantic planes from a different perspective. Larry's inclined to believe the sound ruins the whole experience...

One of the two small temples in the gardens.

An antique water fountain (not in operation yet)

Wildly patterned floral curtains --- appropriate for the English Country look of Newens "The Original Maids of Honor" bakery in Kew --- behind a display of bakery offerings including lemon and orange cakes.

We had a traditional English Country Breakfast (eggs, sausage, bacon, mushrooms, tomato, and bread) alongside a great cup of coffee --- served with a smile by a very friendly waitress.

The hustle and bustle of the food court at Paddington Station.

Windows at St. James Church on Westbourne Terrace pay honor to Londoners who lost their lives during World War II bombings (which destroyed the original church windows).

London cabs come in all shapes and colors.

Tame pigeons flocked around this well-dressed man out for a Tuesday morning stroll in Hyde Park not far from Marble Arch. Fountains at the Italian Gardens were being prepared for a busy Summer season... The Olympics are in London in just a few months.

Getting down (and up) from Tube stations involves a lot of movement on very steep escalators.

Flowers and fountains in Hyde Park.

Heading back to the stables after a ride in the park.

A Very Short Video... 
Eurostar, Piccadilly Circus, and the London Eye