Jun 02 2010

Honeymoon – Paris Day 7 – Opera and Armor

Published by at 12:39 pm under sketchbook,travel

We started out day 7 with a bit of wandering in shops and bakeries. These music store pics are especially for my dad, who is a lover of diverse musical instruments:

The Red Wheelbarrow English language bookstore:

A great little bakery:

Next, a visit to the famous Paris Opera House, or L’Opera.

The opera house is, in it’s way, almost as grand as Versailles. Or at least it would fit right in as part of Versailles.

I wish I had been able to take a photo of the model of the opera house which we saw in the Musee d’Orsay, because (among other things) it’s incredible how much space is devoted to the sets. They can raise and lower dozens of layers of scenery, each the full size of the proscenium.

One of my favorite things in the actual opera house is the little gallery where they show the artists’ mock-ups/renderings of the background scenery. They are totally gorgeous, and more than a little reminiscent of some of my favorite French comics. It makes me happy to look at these, and to imagine Operas with the visual aesthetic of comics. I guess it hadn’t occurred to me that the two art forms could have much in common.

We didn’t get in on any of the tours, so we didn’t see backstage or get to enter the main floor of the theater, but they do allow access to a couple of small audience boxes, and we managed to be in there when they briefly turned on the house lights, so we got some pictures of the interior and the Chagall ceiling.

After that we headed back to the Military Museum for a feast of arms & armor. This place pretty much puts any other armor collection to shame. They also have a bajillion guns, crossbows, cannons, etc, and there was a cool display about illuminated manuscripts.

After that, another walk in the Tuileries gardens, where kids were sailing boats in the pond, much to Alison’s delight.

Finally, we went for a last visit to the Louvre, ending with their fabulous children’s store.

Tomorrow: Our last day in Paris, and rioting in the streets!

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