My favourite way to visit a city is to simply wander so that I can soak in the sights and sounds and smells. I like to see the famous places, sometimes from a distance, but I don’t like crowds and queues. I absolutely love that I have familiar places to revisit in this beautiful City of Love.
After our gluten free breakfast feast, we went back to La Samaritaine which I showed you from the outside yesterday. Intrigued by its architecture and story and the fact that it has been closed for restoration for the past 15 years, we went in for a quick look around:
From there it was a short walk down the Rue de Rivoli and past the cranes and scaffolding of Notre Dame where I have spent so much time on past visits. I miss it and yet there is a sense of busy optimism around it, and a hum of activity.
It was a small church on Ile Saint Louis that was calling to me. A beautiful statue of St Anne in a church of the same name has comforted me when I needed comfort and strength, and no visit to Paris would be complete without stopping in to light a candle and pray to Mary’s Mother. I have found St Anne in so many places in Paris, but this statue is my favourite.
Today was about connection to people and place. New friends, old statues in older churches, favourite places, good food.
Tomorrow we will go in search of St James aka St Jacques aka Santiago. His symbols are hiding in plain sight in busy, beautiful Paris.