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Simón Bolívar

Get your sword ready, it’s time for a history lesson!1-DSC_0388 

Statues make me curious. What do we see?  A man (perhaps a general) with a defiant attitude and his sword raised, as if he is going to start a battle. It looks dominating and even the horse has a arrogant look in his eyes. Maybe it’s a man of nobility?

This time, we’re talking about Simón Bolívar. He was an South-American freedom fighter. The reason Paris has a statue of him is because Paris was an important source of inspiration for Bolivar. He witnessed in 1804 the coronation of Napoleon as emperor of France. Besides the fact that Simon Bolivar lost his respects to Napoleon because he had betrayed the republican ideas, he still was impressed by the grand ceremony.

Bolivar decided from that moment that he would spend the rest of his life to the liberation of South America (from Spanish domination in South America)

The internet is full of interesting articles about him. I know the average interest in reading long blogposts so to make a long story short. Today Simon Bolivar is still seen as the greatest leader of Latin America’s independence movement :)

For more information you may always contact me or leave a comment below.

Sweet dreams everyone or a really good morning ♡

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The history of the macaron

Time for foodies and goodies

Time for foodies and goodies

Sweet, colored and it tastes heavenly. I think we all know what I’m talking about…macarons! I’m crazy about them and I’ve tried them almost everywhere in Paris. It’s so cool to experience all those little artworks at different bakeries or at the famous pastry stores. The Parisians sure know how to make great combinations and how to take care of a big variety. I’ve had lots of crazy flavors. They got olive, lavender, cheese, pistachio, chili, honey…I can go on for hours but I think you got my point ;)

I’ve once wrote a post about Ladurée, a famous pastry store in Paris. They invented the French macaron we eat today. A fun fact is that the beginning of the macaron starts in Italy. Yeah, I was a bit shocked too, but the meringue-based pastry is named after the Italian word for pasta ‘Maccarone’. The Italian monasteries made ​​biscuits ​​from a mixture of ground almonds with sugar and protein, similar to our macaroons. Catherine di Medici (Queen of France from 1547 to 1559) introduced this cake in France. It was mentioned there Maccherone. After many, many years, the French bakery Ladurée in Paris got the idea to combine two macarons with a filling, and that my dear followers, was the beginning of the macaron we know today. 

The macaron is so popular in French that they got their own special day, ‘Le Jour du Macaron’. I haven’t experienced it myself, but it’s on my bucket list. The proceeds of all the macarons go to a good charity. During ‘Le Jour du Macaron’ there are different routes trough Paris to pass unique locations where you can taste some good macarons!

Note: A delicious recipe of my own macarons (and many other fun recipes) can soon be found on the new website www.worldofparis.com. 

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Artwork of Escher or Grand Palais in Paris?

Grand PalaisI hesitated for a moment, but it’s really the Grand Palais in Paris. The people who are familiar with the work of Escher, will maybe understand my comparison.

I visit Paris regularly, but I always skip this building. Not intentionally, but subconsciously.That´s why I decided to take the first step during my last trip to Paris. I have immersed myself in the history of the building and the outside. I wasn’t disappointed at all. There are more than 40 events each year. Next time I’m going to visit an exhibition!

Because of the name ´´Grand Palais´´ I thought it was a former palace, but that´s not true. Grand Palais is a large exhibition hall (with an immense roof of glass) that was built for the Universal Exhibition of 1900 in Paris. It was build at the same time as the Petit Palais and Pont Alexandre III. The Grand Palais has been closed for 12 years because a part of the glass ceiling had collapsed. With the technology of today, we don’t have to be afraid that it will happen again!

A little fun fact is that the Grand Palais has more steel than the whole Eiffel Tower! Through this link you can learn more interesting things about the Grand Palais. Enjoy it!

 

 

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Statue spotting in Paris.

statueParis is full of statues. You got really big ones but also smaller. Did you know that there are even three ‘Statues of Liberty in Paris?’ Just like the one in New York City, but then a bit smaller ;)

I always have a soft spot for statues, I don’t know exactly why but they just interest me. Take the statues of Liberty as an example, why are they there? Why three? But I also have questions about the normal statues of people. Who is so special to get his/her own statue in the most magical city in the world? I just have to figure those things out, to discover if there’s an interesting story behind it. Usually it is, sometimes not.

I´ll give you a short summary of the statue. On the picture above you see Gaspard de Coligny. He was lord of Chatillon, admiral of France and a Protestant leader. He studied literature, but dropped it when he went into the army. After his army lost a battle, he was put in prison. On payment of a ransom of 50.000 crowns he recovered his liberty. He went back to France and became, through the influence of his brother, a Protestant leader. To make a long story short…The bond between Catholics and Protestants were not so close at that time and he had to pay that with his life during the St. Bartholomew’s Day massacre. I found a really interesting article about this biography, click here if you want to read more about Gaspard de Coligny. Definitely worth it if you love a bit of French history!

For enthusiasts, you can find this beautiful statue at the Temple Protestant de l’Oratoire du Louvre. Get off at subway station ‘Louvre-Rivoli’ and walk towards Rue Saint Honoré, voila you can’t miss it!

Bonne nuit

 

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The history of Paris with a touch of technology today.

Le Marais PeopleLe Marais is a popular district in Paris and definitely worth to see.The Eiffel tower is nice but the hidden treasures of the Marais are much more special. Don’t look for big sights or department stores. But, take a look at the local people and surrounding. You will notice that there are many falafel restaurants, craft shops and Jewish people. Not surprising because Le Marais was previously known as the Jewish Quarter. Characterized by wholesalers and leather goods. The pace of life is slower than average district in Paris. Quiet and peaceful. The old doors, narrow streets and the smell of traditional food, give you a sense of how it has been before. Yes, been before. Times are changing…the expensive brands want to settle here, housing prices are very high and today it’s also a popular district for the gay scene of Paris ;)

Gladly, the history of the Marais returns everyday. So we can still enjoy the atmosphere of this amazing district.
Take a look at the photo and judge for yourself ♡

Le Marais, Paris
Note: have you read my post about the oldest park in Paris yet? Click here to read more about Place des Vosges in the Marais. 

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Just give me the wine and nobody gets hurt!

WineDo you guys remember my previous blog-post (November 2013) about the Wallace Fountains in Paris? If you haven’t read it yet, no problem! You’re never too old to learn ;)

It was about the fountains that prevent the Parisians from drinking too much wine. Someone in the comment section asked me ”did it curtail the excessive drinking of wine?’‘ Well, I thought they did (because they made many more of them) but after finding this shopping cart in the streets of Montmartre… I’m not so sure anymore! 

We have to admit that wine belongs to the French culture. So, that sounds like reasonable excuse for an extra glass of wine on this Saturday night!

~ Bon weekend ♥ ~

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The fountains that prevent the Parisians from drinking too much wine.

Wallace fontaines Maybe you recognize these beautiful fountains from the streets of Paris? These green fountains, also known as the Wallace Fountains, celebrate this year their 135th birthday! The idea of the fountains came from Richard Wallace during the French-German war from 1870 till 1871. After the war, clean drinking water was rare in Paris and also very expensive. Richard Wallace was a rich man, an art lover an a philanthropist (which means that you have a big heart for people and give big money to the charities) To prevent diseases, he donated 50 of these fountains to Paris! Richard was an art lover and he designed the fountains together with the French sculptor Auguste Charles Le Bourg. The need for clean drinking water was really necessary and Paris doubled the number of fountains to 100!

Another reason of the fountains was that wine was cheaper than clean water. Yeah, I know.. sounds perfect right? But, it was a serious problem which cause many Parisian alcoholics. Thanks to Wallace, the Parisians were able to drink water instead of wine during breakfast.

The fountains of Wallace are still working but only from 15th March till 15th November, to prevent the water from freezing in the winter. There are 4 models, I think the one on the picture is the prettiest!