Sunset

Sunset in summer in Paris was late, at 9 or 10 sometimes. On nice days, I stay out as long as possible (I think this comes from growing up in a place where the cold months outnumber the warm). However, in Paris if I aimed to be outside as long as it was light outside, it meant that I went home quite late.

It’s like that in other parts of the world too, of course, even in my own country, like in Chicago. Paris was the first time I had lived somewhere where the sun set so late, though, and so the first summer I was there, I was surprised. It was easy to lose track of time in the evening. Not for too long, though—I could always count on the guard at Luxembourg Gardens to jolt me out of my reverie with a whistle blow and a bellowed “Ferrrrrrmature!”

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Luxembourg Gardens, Paris, 9:15pm

via Photo Challenge: Rise/Set

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Powdered Sugar

Last week there was a very, very light dusting of snow, perfect for a walk through the south side of Central Park on the way to Grand Central Station. You’ll notice a lot of buildings in the background because I stayed on the outskirts of the park rather than venturing further in. I was on my way to catch a train, but it was a no-brainer that a walk in the park would add to my day. 101_0022101_0024101_0025101_0026

I later saw this snowy bear, below whom someone had locked a bike and and intentionally or not, given a ride.101_0042.JPG

Have You Seen My Mums?

Fall in Paris isn’t quite like fall where I’m from, so when I saw these red and yellow mums in the Luxembourg Gardens, I had to pop in.14.fall.2013aFor me, fall is red, orange, yellow, and purple leaves.  Pumpkins and hay bales.  Apple cider and cinnamon donuts.  Squash and gourds.  Scarecrows and witches.

Fall in Paris is rain.  Gray skies and glistening wet cement.  Hesitating when the café waiter asks, “Do you want to sit inside or outside?”  (I usually choose outside.)  A leisurely walk in the cool night air but maybe a hot chocolate after.  Some days it’s cold enough to wear a scarf, hat, and gloves, but the other night was sufficiently warm to sit outside with a friend and eat a sandwich from a Lebanese place off the Champs-Elysées.  Not just any Lebanese place, but the Lebanese place where a friend took me to lunch the day I arrived at Charles de Gaulle airport over a year ago.

In any case, fall here isn’t crispy leaves and pumpkin patches.  Luxembourg, however, is decked out for the season.14.fall.2013b

Mums are the flower of November.14.fall.2013c14.fall.2013e

In the background is Luxembourg Palace, which houses the Senate.

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Ducks floated on a lake of leaves.

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Who knows what will bloom next?

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