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Day 308: La Vie Romantique.


One thing that I absolutely love about Paris winters is that they are gone before you can even get used to them. It's not like on the east coast where a chance of snow on Easter Sunday is a probability, and winter seems to lag on and on. In Paris, by the second week of March, spring is here and the frosty weeks we had been suffering through are already a forgotten memory.

Last year, I was a miserable mess and was actually pissed off that spring had arrived. I was incapable of allowing myself to enjoy one of Paris' most celebrated seasons. I wanted to step on the flowers, those little purple and blue doohickies who were torturing me with their elegance. I despised the blue skies, because I was always hoping for rain to justify my wanting to live under my blanket...forever. The café terraces bursting with friends and couples, enjoying the warm weather over cocktails only reminded me that I was alone, and the longer days forced me stay awake longer than I had wanted to. It was awful. The only time I felt safe from my thoughts and oblivious to my situation was when I was sleeping, and spring was getting in the way of my new favorite hobby.

Heavens to Betsey that those creepy days are over! I wasn't living...at all. I mean seriously, what kind of person fantasizes about smashing flowers in France?! To commemorate the changing of the seasons and my new life, I went to one of my favorite nooks in the city; La Musee de la Vie Romantique. I spent an afternoon alone soaking in the sun with my book in their unmanicured garden (that makes me feel like I'm in the Doll Parts video), sipping on a noisette from the greenhouse café and appreciating my life on this insanely gorgeous day in March.

La Musée de la Vie Romantique is ironically located in the 9th arrondissement, only steps away from the sin and scandal of Pigalle's seedy sex shops and peep show theaters, the museum finds itself a home on a side street of this otherwise "busy" district. Tucked away on the quiet Rue Chaptal, the street gives no leads to the beauty that awaits. The museum (that was once the home of painter Ary Scheffer) features the permanent collection, a small house built in the 1930's located at the head of the courtyard has seen the likes of guests Chopin, Delacroix, and George Sand. 

This was one of the first places I had discovered in Paris back in 2009 and fell in love with the serenity of this off-the-beaten-track little gem. 2009, a gilded time in my life when the burden of broken hearts and failed relationships didn't weigh down on my mind. Coming back to this spot brings me back to my Paris spring chicken days, reminding me that it is possible to recapture that feeling of enchantment with my surroundings.

Paris truly is magical, especially in the springtime. I'm glad that I am able to see it this year.

View from the café.

The museum

My favorite paintings by Ary Scheffer
Princess Louise d'Orléans
1833

I need this head piece!
Princess Marie d'Orléans
1830

...and then there's this guy.
Well bonjour there...

Bon week-end à tous!

16, Rue Chaptal
Paris 75009

16 comments:

  1. I've wanted to visit that museum for a long time! I think I might do it on my next visit at Easter!:) Trying to make a list of things I haven't done or seen yet in Paris so I can convince the Duke to keep going back there with me;) My persistence has paid off: he loves Paris, now;) He especially loves that he understands what goes on around him and is understood in return;)

    Thank you for the inspiration, my Dear:)

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    1. You really should visit it. It's just lovely! The permanent museum is free and the exhibitions are 4,50euros.

      It's one of my favorite things to do here...I'm a fan of Paris on a budget!

      I'm glad to have inspired you and offered a little something special for your next trip. : )

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  2. Haha, I love that last dude - he's like a Renaissance Joey Tribiani. How you doin'??

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    1. He's great!

      Seriously...what is that pose? I've been making Seb do it all weekend and mock-asking him if it's a "French thing"...he he he. I'm a pain in the ass.

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  3. I am definitely going there when I come to Paris this April! I am so excited to see Paris in the spring. Last time I was there, it was winter and there was a transportation strike, a horrible combination. I'm glad this spring is so much better for you :)

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    1. Yes! Please do! You'll love it! I'm a big fan of the little itty-bitty museums that are all over Paris. They're so charming...and QUIET!! Not too much tourist traffic around these parts which is definitely part of the appeal for me. Crowds make me nervous. #paranoidnewyorker : )

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  4. well Bonjour indeed....love that guy...

    enjoy the sunshine..we all know that doesn't last too long in Paris...

    bon weekend!

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    1. Thank you, Debbie! I hope you had a nice weekend as well! : )

      And I so love this guy...

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  5. Yes, it's hot hot hot here too, although I'm afraid I haven't been hanging in any romantic gardens (people eventually started complaining about that weirdo girl in the bushes). Glad you're feeling more springy this time round!

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    1. Ah, I spoke to soon. It's chilly again here. What's going on over by you? We had a cloudy, cold weekend. Although the sun is peeking out now...

      I hope you're feeling better and that you enjoyed your weekend! : )

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    2. Yeah cold and rainy again :(

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  6. Please don't tell me that Mr. Bonjour (aka Joey Tribiani) is also a priest. With the black cross on his chest, I guess that he could also be a Templar - nope, I just googled it and they have red crosses.

    Anyway, I've been wanting to go to this museum and have been waiting for the warm weather. I'll definitely follow your lead and sit outside in the garden.

    Glad to hear that you don't feel inclined to destroy flowers anymore. That's a very good sign!

    It was great meeting you last night! You're every bit as delightful in person as you are in print!

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    1. Yes, my irritation towards all things beautiful has passed and am loving every drop of sunshine, the sound of the birds, and the flowers. I'm enjoying this gorgeous season (even if it's cloudy today)!

      It was so lovely to meet you as well! I've been wanting to meet you for months now. It was nice to finally meet the face behind the blog. We were certainly out and about in Paris!!

      You'd really like this museum. Go visit and tell me what you think!

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  7. This place looks so sweet! And that last painting is a riot. Strike a pose! Of course adding this to my list!

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    1. I laughed out loud when I saw this one. It's weird that I have never noticed it on prior visits!

      Yeah, this place is really charming. Now that spring has arrived, the cafe is open..check it out!

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    2. So I just realized that this is the place that has the posters everywhere right now that I immediately was attracted to! I told Sir L as this is his type of art (especially the weird man in your photos... just kidding). Now I'm even more excited to check this place out!

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