Posts Tagged 'holidays'

Paris Street Art Tour + Happy Holidays

An iconic, long-standing work of street art by Jean Le Gac in Belleville

An iconic, long-standing work of street art by Jean Le Gac in Belleville

For the past six and a half years, I’ve lived on the border of the 11th and the 20th arrondissements. I’ve long known that these 2 districts have the highest concentration of street art in Paris.

But my specific neighborhood isn’t the hot center for seeking out these ephemeral works. For that, I need only hop on the metro a few stops. Yesterday, I did just that to join a street art tour.

Led by photographer and poet Richard Beban (and husband of my new writer friend Kaaren Kitchell; the pair produce the blog Paris Play), the tour began on rue Oberkampf.

La Maison de la Plage is an arts collective on Paris' most famous street for street art, Rue Denoyez.

La Maison de la Plage is an arts collective on Paris’ most famous free zone for street art, Rue Denoyez.

A cold December day, we spent a little too long at the outset standing in one place. It was easy to understand why, though. Richard is a font of knowledge and provided an excellent historical overview of why this particular area birthed the street art movement, backed by rich Paris history.

Once we got moving, we covered a lot of ground. Some works I’d seen before, but a great many were new to me. Of course, the very nature of street art means the landscape constantly changes. Weather, the elements, other people or the city itself covering up the works are just a few reasons works disappear from view. (A landlord can ask the city to paint over anything from ground level up to 3 meters high. Anything higher is at the landlord’s expense to cover. A reason many artists aim above the 3 meter mark).

IMG_0846

IMG_0905

What a great boon to have an expert guide for mapping a lively itinerary and offering valuable background information. I learned so much about the different artists and the context, including political roots. And we were led to some incredible surprises!

Continue reading ‘Paris Street Art Tour + Happy Holidays’

Thanksgiving Love and Tears

A recent fall walk through the Jardin des Plantes.

A recent fall walk through the Jardin des Plantes.

Since living in France, Thanksgiving has always been an improvised affair. Some years I’ve gathered in the apartments of friends who are much braver than me – they hunt down the obscure cranberry, shove large turkeys into tiny Parisian ovens, spend small fortunes on the fixins’, many of which are foreign foods here.

I’ve been to lively potluck parties and more intimate dinners, and sometimes, not even celebrated at all. It is just another Thursday in L’Hexagone.

The past few years, Thanksgiving has unwittingly become an unofficial marker of my relationship, too, though my beau probably knows I think this only now that I write it. A couple years ago, we had only just started seeing each other, so new it was that when people at that Thanksgiving referred to him as my boyfriend, he gently corrected them (but since there’s no French word for dating, I’m not sure what term we were then. Just curious about the other, I guess).les jardins des plantes, close-up

Last year, I was with my family, a rare occasion, and I was grateful to have the time with them. Just before the holiday, though, I got to experience that special bittersweet twinge unique to romantic partings. When I left Paris, it wasn’t just to return home for the long weekend, but to go to a long writing residency at the Kerouac House; my beau and I were saying goodbye for 3 months. I was moved to feel how greatly we’d both miss each other.

Continue reading ‘Thanksgiving Love and Tears’

Home for the Holidays

There are plenty of bistros…

Bistro NYC

And the Croque Monsieur is a popular choice…

Croque Monsieur, NYC

And that Arc looks kind of familiar

Washington Square

But of course this is my beloved New York, not Paris!

Continue reading ‘Home for the Holidays’

Unconventional Christmas

A 'green' Christmas tree made of plastic bottles

Hello friends,

I hope you had a wonderful weekend full of warmth and good cheer.

Mine was laid-back but lovely.

On Saturday I finally went to Angelina to try their famous hot chocolate. I was tickled to be a tourist in my adopted city for Christmas – what better time? Angelina has a grand dining room and the hot chocolate does not disappoint.

Next I strolled from the Tuilieres to the Marais where my friend and I grabbed a falafel.

Yes, my Christmas Eve dinner was a falafel from a Rue des Rosiers joint. As we sat eating our falafels on a stoop (classy all the way), we remarked this was the fun of being an expat, especially during the holidays: no rules. No expectations. You make it up as you go.

Continue reading ‘Unconventional Christmas’

Mon Pays et Paris

The Friday before Christmas Eve – woo-hoo!

Just thought I’d share my version of holiday music. I’m no caroler, but this puts me in a certain kind of spirit.

J’ai deux amours: mon pays et Paris, the song says. “I have two loves: my country and Paris.” Ain’t that the truth.

I do sometimes feel stretched across the great Atlantic. Family and friends gathered together back in the States; I miss them from here. But I also feel like I am home. Home in Paris. Why limit love? Love is meant to be big and generous and open-hearted and deep. How great to have two loves.

Mon pays et Paris.

Merry Christmas, everyone!

Guest Post: A Tale of Two Winter Cities (London and Paris Events and Festivals)

Window Display at Galeries Lafayette

Somehow I thought staying here for the holidays would ease the tension of this time of year. I’m not not traveling during peak season. There’s no panic of last-minute Christmas shopping.

Window display at garden store Truffaut

But ease the tension? Yeah right!

I think it’s just the nature of December that elicits a certain measure of stress: days grow shorter and colder, the year is careening to its end. We’re checking our lists twice. What have we done with 2011? And are we ready for the New Year?

So yes, I’m staying put in Paris, but I feel busy just the same. That’s why I was relieved when I received an offer of a guest post this week. Yay – someone else will write the content! Gives me just a wee break.

I was also happy to see the subject pitched as Paris and London, two lively winter cities. It helps give me some perspective when all I think as I make my way through the streets is gray, rain, and cold: brrr!

Actually, it’s a beautiful time of year in both these cities, even if it is chilly. London also seems to keep popping up on my radar; I think a trip on the Eurostar may not be too far in my future.

For now, enjoy Leah’s guest post. I hope you’re staying sane as we wind up the year.

Enjoy time with family and friends!

Cheers,
Sion

"Londres" (London) window display in Paris

Continue reading ‘Guest Post: A Tale of Two Winter Cities (London and Paris Events and Festivals)’


paris (im)perfect?

Sion Dayson is paris (im)perfect. Writer, dreamer, I moved to France on – no exaggerating – a romantic whim. As you can imagine, a lot can go wrong (and very right!) with such a (non)plan. These are the (im)perfect stories that result.

Share the love!

Bookmark and Share

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 3,287 other followers

Follow parisimperfect on Twitter


easyJet Holidays Paris City Break
Expat Blog website
Expat Women website
Protected by Copyscape Plagiarism Checker
Worldette – Ignite your travel life, make a difference, have fun!
© 2010-14 Copyright Sion Dayson ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 3,287 other followers

%d bloggers like this: