Spring, Moreau and Shakespeare

Before I go any further (that’s not hard when I’ve not started writing yet…still) I forgot that we went to an antiques market yesterday. It was at St Honore’s Place and Mirinda made her first Paris antique purchase! Two plates. Now I just need to get them home in one piece. But back to today…

The night went by without incident, at least in the hotel. I have no idea what went on outside because we, finally, closed the window, shutting out the sounds. Much to Mirinda’s surprise, we do have double glazing.

After another lovely sleep in we headed out onto the street to sample the breakfast delights at a cafe opposite the cafe we visited yesterday. Not as good though the same price. Pity we won’t be trying any others. Not that it was bad!

Anyway with our fast sufficiently broken, we headed out into the day. It was another glorious one. (In fact, every day this weekend has been glorious. It’s probably raining non-stop in London but it’s lovely here.) We had decided to walk over to the Musee Gustave Moreau. He was a symbolist painter whose house and studio is now a museum containing quite a few of his works.

Musee Gustave Moreau

Musee Gustave Moreau

I’m not sure I’d go so far as to say I’m a fan of his work, though I wasn’t aware of the fact that I do actually know one of his paintings, The Apparition, something that struck me when I saw a few versions of it in his house. And that’s the thing. It’s almost like old Gustav wasn’t content with his original paintings so he kept returning to the same subject, trying to get it right.

I’m not saying there wasn’t anything I liked; I’m saying I didn’t like all of it. I dare say mum would have hated the lot.

Three of his favourite subjects (somethings we do share) were Salome, St Sebastien and Eve (no Adam though) and there’s an awful lot of them dotted around the three stories of his house.


The picture above is St Sebastien. Kneeling next to him (you can’t make it out in the photo) is St Ursula who helped him. Standing behind him is a huge crowd of on-lookers who appear to be jeering at him. All very different to the usual St Sebs I see.

Gustave was also rather keen on unicorns. And Greek myths concerning strange couplings which possibly explains why he also liked the Chimera.

I would say that my favourite bit of the whole museum was the spiral staircase at the top of the house. That might sound odd but it really is magnificent. Worth the price of admission just to walk up and down it, if you ask me.


We managed not to stay too long and left as the Monday morning museum crowd started to grow. It was then time to visit a department store. I kid you not. We actually visited a department store. That has to be my idea of total tourist tedium (or a Triple T as I call it). However, fortunately, it wasn’t to inspect any of the over priced but generally beautiful fashion items, we were going to the famous Printemps Brasserie beneath a magnificent dome of stained glass.

It has to be one of the loveliest places to have lunch (even if it on top of a department store) though it’s power wasn’t strong enough to keep the couple next to us next to us. They arrived after us and, having removed quite a few layers of clothing, they sat down. They then inspected the menu. He wasn’t happy with his chair so he stood up and swapped with the table next to them, almost sending everything crashing because of his clumsiness. (Mirinda gave me a knowing smile at this point that suggested it wasn’t just me.)

Finally settled, he took out his phone and took a photo of her as she perused the drinks menu. Then, suddenly, he was up and out. She followed slowly after redressing in her many winter layers. It was very odd. I’m fairly certain it wasn’t us because rather than just changing tables they completely left.


We had a delicious duck lunch followed by one of the best creme brulees I’ve ever had…and that’s saying something because I’ve had a few. We then walked back to the hotel for a bit of a rest before Mirinda headed off for the whole reason we are in Paris in the first place.

I went for a Starbucks before settling down to write my blog post, sort my photos and have a bit of a quiet read.

But then it was off to the other side of the river for a rather insane production of Romeo and Juliet in French.

Part of Mirinda’s meeting was attendance at their student production of Shakespeare’s tragedy. And it was jolly funny. And tragic in equal parts. Basically, it was very enjoyable regardless of the language. Given I studied the play every year of high school, I do know it rather well.

A complete stand out and remarkably talented actor was Georgiana Enculescu who was brilliant as the nurse. She really was very good. And Syvlie Woronlecki who was an incredibly energetic and honest Mercutio. (Apparently Sylvie was superb in a Moliere last year and I can believe it given her Mercutio tonight.)

The empty stage

The empty stage

Actually, the whole cast was full of energy and they looked like they thoroughly enjoyed themselves. Even better, the audience were not bored (a bit of a problem with Shakespeare) so it all went down rather well. After the show, we met the director who was very excited that we enjoyed it (being English and all) and very French and adorable. Actually, I rather liked all of the people that Mirinda was there to meet with. And, of course, I met Will.

Will works with Mirinda and is married to a Russian (Marsha) who wonders why Mirinda has a thing for Russian fairy tales. I really want to meet Marsha. And I’m glad I’ve finally met Will who is discussed at length at home. After the play we had a lovely long chat at a nearby cafe where we discovered lots of things about Will including his guitar called Martha and the fact that he supports Nottingham Forest Football Club.

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3 Responses to Spring, Moreau and Shakespeare

  1. hankyoyu says:

    Cheeky thing I might have liked them. You are having a interesting time I am enjoying it second hand so better then nothing. Hope the meeting turned out great.
    love mum xxxx

  2. hankyoyu says:

    Forgot to say I love the staircase I would have made my legs walk up there.
    Great picture Mirinda all so love the windows lovely.

  3. Mirinda says:

    The stained glass ceiling was stunning. And the play was really jolly good!


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