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Saturday, May 1, 2010

Paris - Day 2

Our second day in Paris was dedicated to Mr. G. First stop on the list was Photographer’s Walking Tour of Paris – The Latin Quarter. We were greeted by our host Mr. Kevin Hayden – a professional photographer for more than 30 years. Usually the tour has about 8 people – but again the universe had other plans for us – and Mr. G and I were fortunate to have Kevin all to ourselves.

As we walked along I was captivated by Kevin’s knowledge of the city and his intuitive nature. He explained photographic techniques in terms which I was even able to understand and he also provided great insider tips to getting that perfect shot. Kevin’s enthusiasm and direction was so inspiring - I had to keep reminding myself that this was for Mr. G. and I was just tagging along.

In the heart of Paris on the Left Bank across from Notre Dame, we stumbled (more accurately – Kevin directed us in its direction) across Shakespeare and Company. For centuries the Latin Quarter has been the centre of Parisian creativity and intelligentsia, so it is only fitting that one of the oldest book stores is located here.

Like I mentioned, Kevin was very intuitive and listened carefully when we spoke about interests. As we walked through the doorway – the air was filled with history, excitement, and shelves upon shelves of old books – really old books! What a privilege, as an aspiring writer, to explore.

As Kevin and Mr. G. discussed taking shots from the upstairs windows in the shop and other photography related topics, I took the time to check out the books downstairs. The books upstairs are not for sale. By the time the photographers were ready to move to the next photogenic place I had managed to find 3 books of interest; The New Royal Readers, (Adapted to the latest requirements of the education department NO. 11) printed in 1891; The Vicar of Wakefield (Oliver Goldsmith), printed 1901; The Rights of Woman (Mary Wollstonecraft) – The Subjection of Women (John Stuart Mill), printed 1929. Be sure to ask the shop clerk to stamp the inside of your book with the store’s coveted logo stamp.

Some other pictures I captured, while following Kevin and Mr. G.

Whether you live in Paris or are on vacation a tour with Kevin is something that should make your must do list. Take a visit to Kevin’s website to learn about his photography work or to schedule your own private walking tour – with the added benefit of being with someone who is knowledgeable on the history of Paris and is also able to take you to some of the best spots for capturing that perfect shot.

Next on the list walking tour of Paris's 3 best food groups - pasteries, chocolates & bread

 Jennifer, our tour guide, greeted us at La Maison du Chocolate, 19 rue de Sevres - from that point it was a whirlwind of mouth watering delights! Among some of the places Jennifer introduced us to were: Jean-Charles Rochox Chocolatier; Cacao et Chocolate;Pierre Herme; Maison-Kayser and Marcolini.

Our group consisted of Mr. G. and myself along with two wonderful women from Spicer, MN United States. One of whom is also a Professional Photographer (Carlson Studio Inc.) - for our Blogger Friends in Spicer, MN you may want to check their Carlson Studio Blog to see the amazing pet portraits they have done. It was truly a pleasure to have the company of these two lovely ladies - not to mention that they are chocoholics too!

Along the way Jennifer's knowledge of Paris history kept us so entertained that the walk from one venue to the next seemed liked seconds. Perhaps the the quick passing of time may also have been a result of the sugar induced energy - did I mention that at each stop we were treated to 2  complimentary samples of the shops delights. Mr. G. became a fan of Ganache. Did you know that in Paris a baker must get permission from the city before he can close his Boulanger or vacation? Did you know that May 1st is a very important date and that people give each other Lilly of the Valley? (a chocolate version is pictured under the Macs in the above shot). These are the tid bits of knowledge you may not learn about if you just venture out in the unknown. For first time visitors to Paris or even for those who want to explore a different section of the city, having a knowledgeable local Parisian will let enlight you as well as possibly saving you some sole on your shoes.

You can email Jennifer to schedule a personal/group tour customized to your needs.

Below are some shots I took along our adventure, among them Jardin du Luxemburg - it was just as beautiful as my NYC living - Paris friend had promised it to be.


I hope you are enjoying Paris!

I invite you along on our visit to the Louvre, Cruise the Seine , see Paris by night and enjoy dinner on the Champs-Élysées - on tomorrow's post.

images: Falling off a High Heeled Life


  1. Your photos are awesome! I want to go on a chocolate tour!!!!

  2. I am totally loving seeing Paris through your eyes!


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