The ennui of 28 hours of flight across the world disappeared as if by magic this morning when we wandered through the beautiful gardens of Claude Monet at Giverny.
We first visited Paris in 2013 when we celebrated my birthday at the Moulin Rouge with my daughter, Jac, and eight friends from home. What a memorable night. It was on that trip that I discovered my love for the Impressionists and their beautiful work at the Museé D’Orsay; firstly Pissarro and then Monet. Jac, with two years experience as a Contiki Tour Manager, was our guide to Paris, her favourite city and she shared her delight with us. At Museé de L’Orangerie, I was thrilled by Monet’s beautiful water lilies. I sat and contemplated those amazing paintings on the walls of the two oval rooms purpose-built by Monet for his art work. I loved them and wanted to visit his gardens to see what inspired him. But, alas, we were out of time.
We’ve returned to Paris in order to visit those gardens so, after our very early breakfast – we’d woken at 4am as you do when you are suffering from jet lag- we joined the thousands of others on the Paris metro to get to Saint-Lazare station to catch the train to Vernon & the shuttle bus to Giverny.
We weren’t disappointed. The spring flowers were out in full – tulips, daffodils, pansies, primula ……. and they were magnificent as you can see in the pictures. The water lilies were not in flower but the ponds were still beautiful and so calming even though the crowds were starting to build. I’m so glad we arrived just after opening at 9:30.
We enjoyed visiting his studio and seeing inside his home. It reminded us of our visit to the home and studio of Joaquín Sorollo in Madrid.
By this stage, we needed sustenance & warming up as, although the sun was very pleasant, the temperature was about 5 degrees. So we found hot chocolate and tarte tatin and it was delicious.
We retraced our steps to our Paris home but, before coming in, we visited the very friendly restaurant across the street for a very late lunch and then it was home for a nap. We’ve a lovely little apartment just across the river from the Eiffel Tower. It’s up in the attic on the 6th floor. Thankfully there is a lift and, even though it is tiny and antiquated, it works well. We have a great view of the Paris skyline.
It has been a wonderful first day in Paris.