I know it's still November, but just like in other countries that celebrate Christmas, the event continues to expand to fill a larger and larger share of the end of the year. So I might as well start the report now.
This year there is controversy on the Champs Elysées which has been using very consensual miniature lights and "snowdrop tubes" for the past 5 years. This year, they have installed high tech hoops of LEDs, which go though a synchronized routine up and down the 2 kilometers of the avenue, changing color from time to time.
The trouble is, there's nothing that says "Christmas" about them.
Not all of the places of business are even decorated yet, but some of them are.
Some tourists probably do not know if places are decorated or not, because they are so glitzy to begin with.
At Rond Point des Champs Elysées, the avenue changes from the commercial district to the park area. This used to be marked by six fountains at a sextuple intersection, but the fountains have been out of service for several years (how many more?). Nevertheless, they provide an area for additional decoration.
Then the Christmas market begins. Roasted chestnuts, anybody?
This is November. Imagine how crowded it will become in the coming weeks.
I have seen complaints about Parisian Christmas markets selling nothing of interest. It is true that the markets of Eastern France and Germany devote more space to specific Christmas decorative objects and Christmas food specialties, but Christmas traditions are simply not the same everywhere. Parisian markets are more interested in general "gifts," not necessarily related to Christmas.
Let's smoke some salmon!
And of course the reward for those who go all the way to Place de la Concorde is the giant seasonal Ferris wheel.
The cabins are now protected against the elements. I disapprove!
I think that if one is taking a Ferris wheel in December/January, one should experience the sensation to the fullest, no matter how awful the weather will be. On top of that, it ruins the photos that you can take, but you'll find out to what extent when I go there with my brother and sister-in-law in a couple of weeks.
I need to go back and look for the smoked salmon. I was at the Christmas Market last Sunday which was a mistake because it was so crowded that I couldn't get close to the booths. Maybe I'll have smoked salmon for breakfast next week.
An interesting bit of information that I read is that the Champs Elysees welcomes between 500-600,000 visitors each day during the Christmas season. That's a lot of people.
As always, great photos K2! I look forward to hearing about your experiences on the giant ferris wheel. I haven't ridden on it yet.
I spent my first Christmas in Paris last year and can report that the enclosures were on the ferris wheel pods then. I am coming back for this year's vacances and will skip the ferris wheel - once was enough.
"The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page." St Augustine
I have to admit, I love tinselly, shiny, twinkly, colorful, so Christmas decorations are ok by me. These are particularly sumptuous, not surprisingly.
Since my internet is running at molasses speed, I had to wait for ages for the pics to load. As the page flicked, I kept seeing the diamond mine caption, but not the picture. It was a great relief not to see exhausted workers undergoing cavity searches.
Truly divine Kerouac! I would give my eye teeth to be there right now Reply 15 photo is of the restaurant Au Bougnat - one street away from Notre Dame cathedral, which serves Bavette for 11 euros. In daylight its looks like this. www.aubougnat.com/accueil.html and through those large red doors to the side is a courtyard which has ancient gothic grave stones being used as paving. (Forgive the intrusion, but I love Paris so much I see my time spent there in virtually everyone of your photos Kerouac, like a movie being played in my head.)
Okay, this is not specifically a Christmas video, but I took it last night when erroneously entering Notre Dame to see the creche. Sunday night mass was just beginning so the creche was temporarily inaccessible and I saw this instead.
Someday we hope to spend a Christmas and New Year's in Paris and your photos make me want it sooner! At least I will be back in 9 months! Enjoy the season Kerouac and I hope you continue to give us snippets of how Paris celebrates the season! Cheers! Mich