April 22, 2012

Chapter 1: The Beautiful and Free

The Tales of Ki-Tan
Chapter 1: The Beautiful and Free

(Author's note: "Ki-Tan" is short for Kia and Tanya, my wonderful best friends who prohibited me from blogging - er, I mean, who made my days even more fun this past month. This is Chapter 1 of a five-chapter saga. Welcome.)

I'm not a museum fanatic. To be sure, I visited Paris 4 times last spring, and have now lived 30 minutes outside of it for 8 months, and I haven't even gone inside the Louvre yet. I think I'm saving it for a special occasion, like when some visitor of ours will offer to buy my entry ticket. I can wait.

But in the past week I've been digesting Rick Steves' Paris 2008 (thank you, Kia Gibson) tour book, and I am warming to the idea of viewing the art that is all around me.

Look, I'm reading!
Especially warming are the FREE museums. They are not always easy to find, but when we found the Museum Carnavalet, we struck gold.

This 16th century "hotel" (read: big house) is full of everything you could possibly want in a Paris museum: it's the one dedicated solely to the history of Paris.

So rich and so famous.
So while we sauntered throughout, pretending to be a part of the elite hotel crowd from bygone days, we also continually exclaimed, "Look at THAT!"

The whole place is an experience in time travel, with signs from forgotten store fronts, marble staircases, jewelry displays, musical instruments, archaeological finds, and antique furniture galore.


The museum is massive, and actually spans two hotels around a courtyard with more discoveries. We just couldn't get enough of this place, and we really couldn't get over the fact that we were privy to all of these beautiful things for free.

A grand late 19th century Parisian party.
The icing on the cake our first time through (yes, we went twice, we had to show Kia!) was walking into one of the Revolution rooms, and, HELLO!

ARE. YOU. KIDDING. ME.
Marc's doppelganger is Napoleon-freaking-Bonaparte? My new idea is to have him work period piece tours at Chateau de Fontainebleau dressed as Napoleon. Just more proof that there really are jobs out there to be found.

We had an absolutely smashing time with both Kia and Tanya while they were here. You will continue to see this truth in The Tales of Ki-Tan blog series.

The Tales of Ki-Tan
Chapter 2: To Mob, Or Not To Mob
Chapter 3 VLOG:  Le Printemps en France
Chapter 4: Holland & Coats
Chapter 5: The Color of Monet

11 comments:

  1. Just to tell you Christy ... do you know that some parisian museums are free each first sunday of the month ? (Julie)

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  2. Since leaving Paris I've heard a lot about the musée Carnavalet but I didn't know of its existence while I lived there for TEN YEARS! I should try and go next time I'm there, but there's never enough time to do all I want in Paris...You're right about the resemblance between Marc and Napoleon!!! That's funny. Thanks for linking up again!!

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    1. Hey Phoebe! Oh, the Carnavalet is my absolute favorite, even after 4 years of now lots of museums! Love the link-up, thank YOU! :D

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  3. I know very little about Paris, only been there ermmmm, well let's say a good few years back as a teenager. Really must take the 5 hour drive up and go with hubby some time soon, the museum Carnavalet sounds right up our street! Loving this #AllAboutFrance linky

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    1. It is totally worth it! And in the best neighborhood of Le Marais anyway! Thanks for stopping by via the link-up!

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  4. We've found the museum fatigue is a real thing after living in Europe for 3 years! (I enjoy museums, but really can tire of them.) But free always makes me perk up a bit! Victor Hugo's house is over by the Carnavalet and while it's on the smaller side, it is free!

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    1. There. Are. So. Many. Museums. Right!? I've been to Hugo's home since, and it's a pleasant walk-through! I just love that whole area! Thanks for commenting!

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  5. 'Free' usually perks me up too, and to find out it's also worth the effort makes it a must-do. A museum would be a change too, as I now have church-fatigue (not so many differences between stained glass windows after all).

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    1. The Carnavalet will be a nice change of pace as it feels like you're sneaking around several wealthy people's homes! :) Hope you get to go soon!

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  6. Hi Christy. Having developed 'museum fatigue' many years ago I did not visit any in Paris when I was last there in Jan 14. However!! I have just been to St Petersburg and thoroughly enjoyed a couple of hours in the Hermitage Museum and now have the 'bug' again. The Carnavalet sounds delightful and I guess will not be too heaving with tourists!! Yes, it's now on my To Do list.

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    1. Hi Lisa! I was so afraid of the museums at first because of the exhaustion factor! But yes, the Carnavalet is more like museum snack time than a full meal. :)

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