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Friday, June 19, 2015

Painter's Passport France Expedition Day One: Magic

The day began a little rough but ended with pure magic. Getting here was tough. Long flight delays and terrible traffic in Paris led to my late arrival. I was to meet Stan Sperlak and the Painters Passport group at our hotel at noon. It was 11:50 and the shuttle was almost there. So close. Then the road was blocked. A protest of some sort. The shuttle driver dumped me out on a bridge with simple directions to my hotel.

It wasn't so simple. I got lost. Without a map. And a heavy backpack and a suitcase. The cobblestones and uneven Paris streets are not meant for rolling luggage. I tripped and fell hard onto my knees. Skinned knees, lost and now late I wanted to cry! Fortunately I saw a couple with a map and got directions. I arrived late but thrilled to see Stan waiting outside the hotel in his swanky new Parisian suit!

Then the magic began. First a boat taxi on the Seine and a stop at the Sennelier store. I bought a sketchbook and one pastel. It was on clearance for one euro. It's a great pale pink!

 

 

Then more walking with an overview of the area. We are staying in the Marais district and there is a lot to see nearby. At 5:00 we had an appointment with Isabelle Roche at La Maison du Pastel.....the home of Henri Roche pastels. Isabelle and Margaret talked to us and many made purchases. I resisted temptation. I hope I don't regret that!

Stan and Isabelle

 

As evening approached my travel was catching up to me ( and my knees were sore) but a little Tylenol kept me going until midnight. We took the bateau to the Eiffel Tower and returned to a wonderful long dinner at a street side cafe.....that is another story! Today begins another day of adventure so stay tuned!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

6 comments:

Catherine M said...

I feel your pain! My sister and I were unceremoniously dumped in the middle of Rome by a cab driver -- not because of a protest, but because he couldn't find our hotel -- because he wasn't really a cab driver!! We were scammed, but escaped with our lives, wiser and €80 poorer. Bumping over the cobblestones, like you, we also wanted to cry. It's tough out there, and Americans aren't always treated like royalty! Have a great trip!

Marion said...

That is an incredible first day in Paris. I was a zombie until day 2 or 3 due to jet lag. If you go to a pharmacy they may have magnesium lotion for your knees - it will help!

robertsloan2art said...

Oooh wonderful day! Roche' are great pastels. If I was there I'd have gotten the 12 half sticks collection or all the 12 color half sticks boxes depending on budget. Few can afford the whole line but the half sticks sets are reasonable, the 12 color ones a better bargain.

Roche' are intense and take a very light hand. The friends I know who have them use them for finishing marks. I think given your style you'd probably enjoy them most as spices, little accents, they are not as soft as Sennelier but are super intense. And of course the range is enormous and growing. Naturally I dream of the insane full set in rosewood boxes but I'd need to win the Literary Lottery to do it. And then might not use them all. I'd wind up with other full range sets first.

Anyway if you do regret it you can get them from fineartstore.com any time. Probably wise not to jump in right away!

So cool you found a pale pink Sennelier in the clearance bin! Fantastic price!

What a glorious trip!

Tammy said...

In my - albeit extremely limited due to cost - experience, the Roches are worth the money. I only have a tiny handful, but love them and find they last an incredibly long time if you use a soft hand and reserve them for the final layers. As a bonus, they seem to also play very nicely with Terry Ludwigs, which I know you love. :-) Enjoy your trip - look forward to your continued reports!

Lyn Evans said...

I love that tiny Sennelier shop. Did you go upstairs?? All those pens and Mark making tools, and the PAPER !! Oh boy, just wonderful.

Sandi G said...

Enjoy reading all your posts. Your trip posts are wonderful reads as in a travel journal but filled with pastel information and the challenges of European travel. Looking forward to each post. Hope your knee is better. Merci beaucoup.Karen.