Sunday, June 3, 2012

Wandering the Saint Sulpice Neighborhood

 One morning I headed west on St-Germain-Des-Prés and then south, (left) on Rue de Seine... I wandered the area bordered by those two streets, Rue de Rennes and Rue de Vaugirard. Rue de Clément has a covered marketplace which attracts more residents than tourists. I had hoped to find a bathroom there (which I did, but that's another story that still makes me laugh). The site of an old market fair in the 12th century, this marketplace had been rebuilt in 1811 in an Italian Renaissance style featuring double columns.  It was reconstructed in the 60's. At the time I didn't know that along with shops and food markets, it houses a theater, swimming pool, a daycare, handicapped studios, and underground parking. The shop part looks like an American Mall (except not very public bathrooms), but the food markets have more the feel of French outdoor food markets. Nearby there are some hotels, boutiques and also a soup kitchen. 
Place St Sulpice. So here was a time, encountering a magnificent fountain, when I regretted my choice of leaving the camera at home. However, sketching from a bench in front of the cathedral was so enjoyable. It might not have happened if I'd been running around snapping photos. (I am a snapper, rather than a photographer, it's true...)
Having fair skin means I am always on the lookout for sunhats that don't look too dorky. Imagine my surprise to find a boutique of some of the largest bonnets I've ever seen!  Eventually the saleslady inside the store caught on to the fact that I was sketching, and gave me a disapproving eye out the window. I understood what she meant, for the evil eye is in Universal Language.  School teachers & librarians have been known to use it.  But if it's done well, there is a twinkle attached. Since I didn't catch a twinkle, I wandered on...

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