It pays to get to Versailles early! I hope you will follow my adventures in France, Australia and beyond.
“La vie est trop courte pour boir du mauvais vin”!
So what is it all about?
“Life is too short to drink bad wine” penned Goethe in one of his lighter moments and this is what you hopefully will find here. Celebrating life through photography, poetry, humor and writing. (Drinking good wine is also highly recommended!)
Who am I?
A question I regularly ask myself.
I am an Australian who loves photography, art, collecting, poetry, writing and all things French.
I have had the great good fortune to enjoy some wonderful adventures with my friends and to see (and photograph) some amazing things. I would like to share my experiences with interested readers. Thanks for taking the time to look at my blog.
What will you find on this blog?
You might like a wander through some of my regular posts or participate in my Haiku challenge, share my Mondayitis rant or read about my travels in France, Oxford and beyond. “French Friday” is a chance for fellow France enthusiasts to share a piece of writing, a photo or anything else they love about France.
You might also like to read my travel story based on an 18th Century Epistolary novel, all the chapters of which can be found here. Papa Bouilloire Goes to Oxford
As they say…”There’s something for everyone!” so I hope you find something for you!
How to navigate in this blog
The visuals of this blog are quite minimalist so if you would like to leave a comment on any post, select the plus (+) sign in the speech bubble at the bottom of each post. I always love to hear your opinion. If you select the (+) sign in the circle beneath each post it will open up all the other information about recent posts, links, blogs I enjoy and much more! Most of the posts are written to be read anytime and are not a chronological sequence so older posts are worth a visit if you have an area of interest.
About the photographs
All of the photographs I use on my blog are my own work except in a very few rare instances that I would always specifically mention. I would be delighted for you to share or use my images but please do acknowledge their source.
Such a peculiar contrast. A vintage car show in the grounds of a 14th century castle. I snapped this just as the show was ending. Vincennes
I snapped this lucky shot in April in Paris with les Invalides in the background. A wonderful day!
Light through the glass ceiling of the Melbourne Library
There in the abandoned picnic ground I snapped this pretty flower.
I saw and photographed these lovely flowers in the Place Monge markets one April in Paris.
Lamp base on the Pont Neuf I took in Paris in spring. The first true view of the city I had in my life after debouching from the Metro.
When in North Western Australia, always look down when you walk. If the blue ringed octopus doesn’t get you the stone fish or the cone shell will
Who needs to be eating fresh baguettes in the main square of the insanely picturesque Rennes when you could instead be experience “Parmageddon” at the Bull Creek Tavern?
Blue skies, and a wonderful view from our hotel in St Malo. Snapped by me in 2012
I snapped this lucky shot in April in Paris with les Invalides in the background. A wonderful day!
My wonderful friend led me up this little known way to Montmartre where I took this shot. With its reputation of art and Bohemianism, Montmartre remains a wonderful place to visit, especially in the springtime.
Old 1920s advertising on a building in Rennes, France
I hope the treasured memories you have in your own mind are as wonderful as those in the British Museum when I took this photo on a summer’s day.
Standing here in the soft grass I took this picture while a gentle breeze gave the slightest ripple of movement in the treetops. Taken in spring in Versailles
The little white cat strolled nonchalantly by the ancient archway and ignored the sign for the “Expo” on the building beyond.
A beautiful warm day in Exmouth, Western Australia…before the shark…
My photo today is one I took in Versailles which I have entitled “Evergreen” in homage to the Christmas tree. This calm and dignified picture is in stark contrast to our present home environment.
I took this photo at Magdalen College, Oxford one glorious summer. The gate promises wonderful adventures beyond.
Through a window at Magdalen College Oxford.
Arriving early in the morning we found the Arc de Triumphe uncrowded and the wonderful morning sun shining directly through the archway.
The last hurrah of Autumn in the Jardin du Luxembourg.
The Temple of Love in Versailles photographed in autumn.
I realised today that I looked about as hipster as these boats I photographed in Japan look like actual swans.
Taken on a summer day, this is the corner of the Fremantle Markets – a must for lovers of exotic coffee and handmade soaps.
I rather liked the sky in this shot I took. The sun very kindly positioned itself behind to give an extra glow.
Most people don’t know about the fabric shops in Montmartre. Why not grab a few dozen metres of watered silk after a pleasant lunch up on the hill.
This understated little bit of iron scroll work enhances the one of the doors into Notre Dame. I snapped this on a lucky day when there were very few tourists.
his little chap obliging sat for a photo on a recent trip to the local swamp.
Asakusa and you can never have too many lanterns when it’s festival time!
Summer in Oxford and the punts look so very easy to operate. DO NOT BE FOOLED!
Your Christmas Getaway – Feeling a little down this December? Why not rent Vaux le Vicomte and flee to France. Don’t bother telling your family and friends. You can always claim you were abducted by aliens if they ask any questions.
We photographed this view from a platform in Dinan. Oh that we had the time to wander down to see it!
Claude Nicolas Ledoux’s Rotonde de la Villette on the largest artificial lake in Paris. Do take a barge up the Canal St Martin, dine and then stroll to the serviously underated Buttes des Chaumont.
Now a charming garden, the Square du Vert-Galant has had a gruesome history.
This clever effect painted on the wall gave the impression of cool shade in this photo I took on a spring day in Paris.
This faun frozen in a musical reverie I snapped in the Jardin du Luxembourg
Nikko in spring and the cherry blossoms we just at the height of their transient beauty.
Windmill in Brittany – A lucky snap from a coach companion resulted in this fantastic photo.
At the back of the Grand Trianon we stumbled upon this charming garden in April and took quantities of snaps in the sunlight.
J’adore the door! The asymmetry and colour of the doors and shutters was charming I thought.
This little window in St Malo was so intriguing. What lay behind?
The tiny Square Rapp is an Art Noveau gem and with a view like this when you step out the door each morning life must be good for the luck few living there.
The Art Nouveau grill with a most interesting lattice trompe-l’œil in the tiny Sqaure Rapp.
Vaux le Vicomte is stone’s throw from Paris. If I could chose where to live, this would be it.
The beautiful dome of Les Invalides. It is forbidden to bring stinky cheese into this place of great sanctity.
This is the wonderful view greeting the traveller after leaving the tunnel at the start of the Canal Saint Martin. I snapped this in spring the first time I experienced this delightful and surprising glimpse of lesser known aspect of Paris.
My Heart belongs to Paris and Sacré Cœur was at its finest on this lovely day in Autumn when I snapped this picture.
Here I am in happier times in front of the Lapin Agile. I ask you, Dear Reader, do I look like a perfect Santa to you?
Early Morning in Dinan, a charming street waits in readiness to be transformed in to a bustling restaurant strip in spring.
Oxford through one of the apertures at the top of Magdalen Tower Oxford
Taken while swinging at the bar in this strange pub in the heart of St Malo.
On a crisp morning in spring we turned back and say this wonderful view which I snapped with joy.
Bath Cathedral ceiling in summertime. The light helped to highlight the detail in this shot I took on a recent visit there.
This delightful Cafe Gourmand I enjoyed in a garden in Versailles. Kale just simply does not have a chance.
This little understated snuff box crafted for Frederick the Great caught my eye in the V&A. It made my tupperware lunch box look a little tawdry but I snapped it anyway.
Such a charming conception to use these arches as supports. I snapped this on a perfectly clear spring day in Paris
Early morning at Abbesses, we chose not to climb the stairs up.
Autumn, and the last hurrah before the tubs are wheeled away for winter.
Hector Guimard’s art nouveau masterpieces.
It pays to get to Versailles early! A snap I took all alone in the morning.
A sunlight day in spring cast a perfect light on these statues and was shot to good to miss.
Last of the autumn flowers in the Luxembourg Gardens.
Tulips in Versailles
Cascading blossom reveal a glimpse of the cathedral on a cloudy day in spring.
I shot this after a visit to the Opera. Opulence perfected!
A wonderfully lopsided street in Rennes. I snapped this photo in spring
I love these awning along the side of the Musee D’Orsay. A magic spring morning and a perfect say for photos!
Montmartre seen through one of the immense clocks in the Musee d’Orsay. A photo I snapped in spring.
Picturesque street in old Rennes
View of the walls I took at low tide, spring 2012.
At the risk of losing a limb, I snapped this photo in Exmouth as we drifted in sea kayaks over a coral outcrop about 500m from shore.
Produced by Nobutaka Shikanai, with sculptured glass by Gabriel Loire, and reliefs by Atsushi Imoto, this 18 metre high tower of stained glass is a wonder of art and engineering.
Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité – the cornerstones of French society.
This tent and camp bed are to be found in Fontainebleau. I took this photo in the dim light and was pleased to see how well Napoleon’s “glamping” experience came up.
Vingnette treatment of Mount fuji
I nearly trod on this dear little creature in Exmouth, Western Australia, completing my deadly creature encounter trifector.
This door caused controversy when people detected a phallus in the decoration.
If you can’t have a bijou residence in France then at least you can have some keys that might unlock one.
Voted best facade in Paris 1901, the front door of the building caused scandal when on closer inspection the door clearly represented male “rude bits”.
There in a mud puddle at the edge of our local swamp this little family of duckies begged to be photographed. I obliged.
Sacré-Cœur in the distance on a lovely spring day.