Thursday, August 25, 2011

Latin Quartier

I have been a bit lazy about doing my posts this week, but here it goes. This one is one of the walks I took last weekend.

I went to the Latin Quartier, which is part of the 5th district. This zone is where the Sorbonne and other colleges are. Because in the earlier days, all schools taught in Latin, the surrounding establishments, such as restaurants, and stores started to put their writings in Latin too, hence the name Latin quartier (I was thinking it was because maybe a lot of Latinos lived in the area, and had a bunch of salsa clubs, but as I later found out I was very wrong).

My walk started at the place de St. Michel which is a very pretty fountain, with a sculpture of Saint Michel defeating a dragon.


I then walked to the Church of St. Severin; this church has a very gothic look to it. The inside is very pretty too. Every church I go into has this real amazing stained glasses, all of them are so well one, and very pretty. 


Down the street from where this church is, I found what has to be the narrowest building I have ever seen, I have no idea how can you even get the furniture inside!

Very close to this church is the bookstore Shakespeare & Co., it had a real nice mood to it, a lot of people just hanging out there. Supposedly when you buy a book here, it is marked with a stamp that reads: Shakespeare & Co Kilometre Zero Paris" which I though was pretty neat since, indeed they are located not even 1 km outside of what is considered the origins of Paris.


A few steps more and you find The Sorbonne of Paris. I always remember my aunt since I was very little saying that she didn't learn English and learned French instead in school because she dreamed about coming to The Sorbonne to study, so it was pretty cool, to actually see this school that I have heard for a long time about. Once the school year starts I will go back and see how the inside looks, since it was closed because everyone is on vacations. The outside of the buildings are all very nice, all decorated, with lots of nice details to look at.


Behind the main building of the Sorbonne you will find the Chappelle de la Sorbonne, which is a nice little chapel, with a small plaza in the front, cafes on one side, and stores on the other, the typical Parisian picture.


Not very far away, you will find the Pantheon. This was originally intended to be the Church for St, Genevieve the patroness of Paris, but after the Revolution in became a cemetery. Through the years many famous people's remains have been moved here. Since I didn't go in, I will find out more info and post it, after I go. In the meantime here is how it looks.


As I was here, I turned around, and I see this beautiful view of Paris, I couldn't resist sharing it, so here:

And finally on the last stop of my walk I went to a little church right behind the Pantheon, called The Church of St-Etienne-du-Mont. This is the church with the altar to St. Genevieve which as I mention is the patroness of Paris.


 I read that the "fence" or "stairs" right in the middle of the church separating the choir section form the rest of the church is Renaissance Style. The stairs or how ever is called, is real pretty. 


The one annoying thing when visiting this church, was the herd of tourist coming in right behind me from a bus parked just outside. I used to want to travel in one of those tours, but after I saw what it means to be trying to take pictures and get to view a place surrounded by the other tourists on the bus, I am not so sure I still want to take tours of that kind.

Anyway I think I am making progress in my French, I can understand a bit more clearly when people in stores tell me how much I am supposed to pay for my food, or I can start to figure out how to say or ask for small things. I have two more classes before my pastry classes begin. Anxiety is beginning to appear, and I am felling a bit nervous of what is to come, but as a phrase I read months ago says: "If God brought you to it, He will bring you through it!!". 

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