Architecture and Design, General, Tours and visites, Travel, Travel with Kids, Un peu différent, Walking (tours and promenades)

Canal Saint Martin is a walk in the Park of Paris

Another little surprise, from Parc de Villette, rediscovering Canal St. Martin by walking from Parc de Villette to Bastille. The entire neighborhoods along the way are so lively, especially during the summer months, when Paris Plage is going on.  All of the activities here beat the Paris Plage by the Seine.   Canal St. Martin, is a 4.5 km long and…read more
Architecture and Design, Tours and visites, Un peu différent

Promenade Plantée vs. High Line

Ok.  I thought New York City's High Line was an original.  Then I discovered that idea of elevated linear parks built on old railroad tracks actually originated in Paris in 1988 with the design of the Promenade Plantée, a 2.8-mile-long series of gardens built atop an abandoned railway viaduct in the Right Bank’s 12th Arrondissement, anchored by the Opéra Bastille…read more

La Rotonde is Our Go To Neighborhood Brasserie Frequented by Ghosts of Hemingway

La Rotonde has become our go to brasserie in the neighborhood. Their terrace is perfect in the summer. So is their menu.  Their Tomato Carpaccio is out of this world.  So is their Œufs Cocotte (BIO)  à la crème de morilles.  Our son's favorite is the Cote de boef avec morilles, avec riz. Since 1911, la Rotonde has become a…read more
Culture, Travel with Kids, Un peu différent

Tokyo on the Seine

There has always been a long history of love of all that is Japanese in France.  The trend became so intense that in the 19th century, there was a movement called 'Japonisme.'  This wonderful NY travelpost lists many interesting destinations, including Albert Kahn Museé et Jardin. Musts: 1. Galerie Sentou 2. Kunitoraya 3. Jugetsudo   Save Save Saveread more
Architecture and Design, Travel with Kids

Albert Kahn Museé et Jardin

Albert Kahn, amazing philanthropist and traveler, bought the Boulogne property in 1895 and slowly bought up his neighbours’ lands to the point where, in 1910, he owned an immense plot of nearly four hectares. In the shady avenues, near the Boulogne. The Jardin is a collection of homage to a Japanese garden, an English garden, a temperate forest... it all…read more

Whiteboard in French?

I love my kids' education at the French American school here in San Francisco. Among other things, it's made them so much more sensitive to language and humor. Today, I asked the kids if there was a French word for a whiteboard. They said that everyone just calls it the "ardoise," which of course is like continuing to call a whiteboard a "blackboard" in English. ... My 8 year old son replied, "How about "blardoise," which I'd say is the perfect adaptation.
In the News

The Locks on Paris’s Bridges Represent a Misunderstanding

The background on that whole crazy "locks on pedestrian bridges" thing: Symbols of undying love — though not in the view of Parisians — adorn Pont de l'Archevêché, in front of Notre Dame. ... On some of the city’s most iconic bridges, thousands of visitors left small padlocks, neatly attached to the metal railings. Once discreet, doing their deed at night, visitors soon acted in broad daylight, in pairs, photographing each other in front of their locks, and videotaping the throwing of the keys into the Seine. ... One night about two years ago, someone cut through the wires and removed all the locks on one of the bridges. ...Such a font of conversation topics, from the madness of crowds, the meaning of love, which side of the bridge is more popular and why the choice matters, and if there was any symbolism to the bike locks we saw chained in front of the ecole maternelle near our house.