le 11 janvier
Natalie et moi, nous avons visité le cimetière de Père-Lachaise et le Panthéon. Pour moi, ces deux lieus sont les derniers repos de mes deux auteurs favoris—scar Wilde et Alexandre Dumas. Même si c’était le cimetière, même si ce sont les royaumes de la mort, il y a de la paix, il y a de la beauté. On a passé deux heures au cimetière, à chercher (et trouver) Chopin, Balzac, Jim Morrison, Delacroix, Molière, Edith Piaf, Marcel Proust, et, bien sûr, Oscar Wilde.
Son monument avec un ange volant a été embrassé mille fois, avec les inscriptions en différentes langues. Je me souviens d’une inscription qui proclamait : « Dandy Forever ». Il y avait des fleurs, des lettres, et un seul chocolat. Je pense qu’Oscar aimerait bien le chocolat. (Le chocolat était un de chocolats de « Maison du Chocolat ».) Je n’avais rien avec moi, mais j’ai offert quelques mots au fantôme d’un des grands écrivains, un écrivain qui avait plein d’esprit toujours, même en prison. J’espère qu’il m’a entendue.
It’s difficult to believe that some of the arrondissements in Paris look completely different than others. Today we visited the Mouzaïa, and instead of seeing the same Haussmann architecture that overruns the other parts of the city, we saw a different type of living environment—the villas, which are small narrow alleys. I was quite surprised to see that small homes with front gardens existed in Paris. Up to today, I had only seen large, eight story buildings, covered with beige stone.
Here, in the Mouzaïa, the homes were painted with all kinds of colors…yellow…lime green…orange…it was quite fascinating…and at the same time…visually captivating. I would have never thought electric-blue would make a good color for the outside walls of a house.
After we left the villas, we headed to the Musée d’Orsay to see an exposition on Maurice Denis. I’m not an expert on art and because I didn’t know too much about his work, I was not quite sure what to expect. I did know that he belonged to the Nabis movement, and that he painted lots of portraits, especially of his wife, Marthe. Sure enough, during the exposition I saw that he painted several paintings of Marthe along with landscapes and religious subjects. He went through a dark period after his wife’s sudden death in 1919, but kept painting until his own untimely death in a car accident in 1943.
When the tour was over, I became excited because I got the chance to see the artwork from Monet and Picasso that the museum had on permanent display. For me, modern art was different because it stood out and grabbed my attention. I had never been to this museum, and it was a shame that we got kicked out early… I would have enjoyed spending more time looking at Monet’s Harmony in the Blue, or Wind Effect, Series of the Poplars.