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Tuesday, July 30, 2019

British Museum - Home of the Rosetta Stone

Rosetta Stone - about 4' by 3' by 1'
The Rosetta Stone is probably the world's most famous piece of granodiorite - a type of granite. The type of rock is common - but the writing on it made it famous. The rock was a street sign - with a decree of law on it from the government of Ptolemy around 196 BC. It is written in 3 languages. First in hierogyphics (picture letters) - second in Egyptian text - and finally in Ancient Greek. It was done that way so many people would understand what the sign said. 

In 1799 - the French under Napoleon found it in Rosetta - Egypt. They immediately realized its value for translation. In 1802 - the British overrun Egypt - and took the stone to England to protect it. It has been housed in the British Museum ever since. Of course Egypt would like it back.

On the first time we went to London in 1996 - it was unprotected in the museum - you could walk up and touch it. Now it is in a protective glass case - easy for getting close to read - and making it the most visited item in the museum.

The British Museum is our London neighbor. It was started in 1752 and was the first - largest - free - public museum in the world. It is just around the corner from our London home. Tuesday morning it was raining and Lulu was taking her class to the Facebook Headquarters. It was maid day at the apartment - so I went to the museum - to get out of the way. 

There are 13 million objects at the museum.

There are hundreds of antiquities taken from Egypt when that country was under the British Crown.

This was a carving from an Assyrian Palace.

 This haunting beautiful statue raises my camera every time.

I love the simplicity of the Parthenon in Athens.

When we built our house we had the Parthenon in mind.

It is simple in an OCD person's mind

The museum room where they house Parthenon parts

Ruins stolen from Greece and Rome

This is the missing Caryatid from the Acropolis.

The basement houses the Africa antiquities

Monday, July 29, 2019

A Summer Sunday - Tour de France - Touring With Our Son

We spent Sunday touring Paris with our son and then caught our 6 PM train back to London. It was still light when we arrived back at our apartment in London.

Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte I is the number one French hero. In the early 1800's - he won many battles and they were the super power of their time. He is buried here in St Jeromes Catherdral - connected to the National Army Museum.

Near the end of the day we posed on the bridge over the Seine River near Keith's home.

Napoleon is in the stone box. He was exiled to Saint Helen - and island in the South Atlantic for 7 years. He died and they buried him there. Finally in 1840 - they brought him home - carried him through the Arch of Triumph - and to this spot. He has been here for 180 years.

 We were touring the American Church in Paris. To our surprised an orchestra from Reading PA was giving a concert. We listened and felt like home. There is a wonderful Franch-American Montesori School in this community center. It is just a couple blocks from my son's home. Grerat place for American kids.

 Nice community center

Ice cream shaped like flowers. You pick the flavors - they make the flowers - you eat them

 Notre Dame Cathedral under construction. Many super rich have donated millions to restore it.

 Nancy used to take  her classes to tour this church on a day trip from London.

 National Army Museum - Napoleon tomb behind it.

 We stumbled on the Reading PA Music Concert Tour.

This school is close to son's home

 Notre Dame is on an island in the middle of the Seine River. Water flows from right to left.

I took these pictures form the Left Bank

Lulu's students used to board a boat from this bridge in the old days.

So many colorful markets - cafes - etc - on the Left Bank.

We toured the Cluny Museum - we did not see George anywhere. 

Religous paintings in the Cluny Musuem. 

This traveling altar was made of ivory. 

This tapestry was 10 feet high.

Buying Tour de France clothes.

Louis Vuitton on the Champs a Elysee.

It was Tour de France Day.

70s and sunny on Sunday for the race.

The Arch of Triumph was built by Napoleon in 1806. It is on the Naitonal Etoile or Star. 12 streets come together like numbers on a clock. Normally you can go up on the top. Today there is a flame for an unknown soldier from WWI in the middle. When Hitler captured Paris in 1940 - his troops marched to the Arch - but did not march thru out in respect to the grave - now who said Hitler was a bad guy. Sarcasm.

These were really nice rental electric bikes. 

This electric scooter was also a rental. They are similar to a Vespa but electric. 

This is the torch from the Statue of Liberty.  It has turned into a monument to Princess Diana. In the tunnel underneath - she was killed in a car wreck. Many people here think it was intentional. See the tower in the background. See Lulu in all black.

How about some Napoleon Cognac. Ironically this national hero was thrown out of his country for 7 years until he died. Then 20 years later they brought his body back.

Sunday  6 PM - time to catch the train to England. This is the Gard du Nord. Eurostar train goes back and forth to London several times a day - almost every hour. If you buy your tickets early they are 49 euros one way. We bought late and paid 99 euros each way. It takes a little over 2 hours - you do not go straight - you go almost to Brussels - then turn left to London. We each had one carry on bag. We stayed 3 nights.

Saturday, July 27, 2019

A Nice Weekend In Paris With Our Son

Our son took a job in Paris. He started last week - and he is busy getting things set up for his family to move over. His wife and kids come next week.  They will live right by the Eiffel Tower. He will walk through the Eiffel Tower to work. Above - The 7 matching balconies on the second floor will be their home. It is a lovely setting - the back of the apartment is by a giant grassy park around the Eiffel Tower. A great place for kids to play.

Paris is pretty all year but the summer is heavenly. They had a hot spell last week but today it is back to 70s and sunny. We are currently in an airbnb across the street.

Napolian's tomb is under that gold dome.

This is the Museum of the Army

The museum is in the building of the old soldiers hospital.

This is Napolian's real horse - stuffed and mounted.

This is a famous Nazi V-1 Buzz Bomb.

The German V-2 ballistic missile has a prominent place. 

Librairie means bookstore. 

Napolian's ashes are in that box.

The dome over Napolian's tomb.

A big cathedral is attached to the tomb.

This pharmacy sign had two thermometers - each street was a differnet temperature.

Right behind those two signs is my son's living room.

We met up with Dr Marilyn Kaye - for 10 years she was a best buddy of Nancy when they were professors together at St Johns in NYC. Marilyn is retired now and writes children's books. Upon retirement she moved to Paris immediately. Le Cavalier Bleu is her favorite place to sit and write. Nancy really loves and appreciates her friendship. Two New York City Library Professors.


Bourdonnais Avenue - Paris - a tree lined street right by the Eiffel Tower. Note the apartment in the background.

A very colorfull candy store.

We arrived in Paris on the Eurostar Train about 10 pm Thursday. We stayed with our son at his temporary airbnb. We saw his new apartment across the street - they move there in a couple weeks. His family flies over next week. 

Friday we went to the Museum D'Orsay - an art museum covering 1850 to 1910. We then met up with Marilyn Kaye that evening. 

Saturday we toured the Army Museum and Napolian's Tomb. After that we had a nice late lunch at La Petit Verannes. Now we are back home - I am typing to the tune of dualing snorers. 

Our 4 days in Paris ends tomorrow about 5 PM - as our train pulls out of the North Paris Station. In two hours or so - we will be back in downtown London - and a late supper at our flat at 18 Bedford Place. 

Lulu has 3 more classes to teach - then Sunday we fly home to Florida. Lulu flies straight to Atlanta and home. She will beat me because I am flying on a free frequent flyer ticket - so I must fly to Detroit. We are having a contest to see who can get bumped the most on the way home.