Art up to here...

Sunday, kitchen table, north of the River Seine, but not far, Paris


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A lively bunch of dead impressionists can be found hanging at the Musée D’Orsay, across the Seine from my little apartment.

Sunday morning in Paris, there are almost no bikes in the racks; the rest were ridden centrifugally from the city centre yesterday. Sunday lunchtime they’re all back again. The footpaths are humming. Traffic is congealing.

An aging accordion player on the timber-planked footbridge crossing the river creates a perfect Parisian atmosphere, while a stubble-chinned young man on a bench tilts his face to soak up both music and sun. The tune has a strange, halting, and uneven quality to it. I can’t tell whether it’s a particular ethnic style I’m being exposed to, or a really shocking musician.

As I walk towards the Museum along the left bank, the bells of Notre-Dame toll in the direction I’ve come from. A nun is rushing towards me, habit of deep blue plastered to her front, looking at her watch.

I realise I’ve left my camera behind...recharging the battery so I wouldn’t miss anything...



Two tall rollerbladers skim along the footpath then pull up to wait at a crossing. The tall female rollerblader leans nonchalantly on the railing as I reach them. Suddenly she’s gone. Her feet have slipped out from under her and she’s flat on the ground. I offer to help her up but she prefers her partner. Possibly she prefers to think nobody noticed.

The antique shops here really have...antiques...15th century for example. I remember seeing a 3000 year old piece of bread in the Egyptian exhibition when it came to Australia (on loan from the Louvre, as it happens)...imagine making a vegemite sandwich and having it end up in a museum 3000 years from now.


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Note: If you go to the Musée d’Orsay on a Sunday, it will be crowded. The crowds actually enhanced the Louvre experience, just like live theatre, but the Musée d’Orsay is smaller so enhancement sometimes gave way to elbowing. I don’t apologise...she deserved it.

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Incidentally, if you have to stop half way through looking at Renoirs and Van Goghs to go home and do a cartoon with snowmen in it, you can come back later the same day using the same ticket. Your ticket for the Louvre won’t work for the Musée d’Orsay, however, so just make sure you grab the right one out of your bag. The monsieur will notice. You could explain it was under your wallet, camera and sunglasses because you were here earlier. If you’re very lucky, he won’t ask why you interrupted your viewing of Renoirs and Van Goghs and you won’t have to say, to do a cartoon with snowmen in it.


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The Louvre is on the way home from the Orsay. Don’t you just wonder what it throws out?