Thursday, October 29, 2009

Roberts family reunion!

I don't remember the exact dates, but pretty quickly after I'd arrived home, the Roberts extended family had our annual festival of fun, food, and fire.

Well, the fire part isn't really annual unless you count a barbecue grill. But this year there was fire.

Anyway.

In what seemed like no time at all, I went from this to this:





And I'm not gonna lie... If I had to give one of them up permanently, it would be a pretty tough decision. I love the mountains. The trees, the crisp air, the wide open feel.

The reunion was at the Heber Valley Camp, and they had a lot of different activities that we could participate in, as well as a huge pavilion where we could hang out and enjoy each other's company. My favorite part of the reunion was the zipline on the challenge course.

I love the mountains, I love the rolling hills...

Sunday, October 25, 2009

The End

I have to double and triple check my picture files, but it looks like we've come to the end of my Paris pictures.

Sad. It's like re-living the end of my stay there all over again.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Dancer in the St-Merri Cathedral

Remember this cathedral?
I visited it on one of my first nights in Paris.


It's on the west side of the Pompidou Center, next to the Stravinsky Fountain.
The Tuesday before I came home, a small group of friends and I were walking around and decided to stop into this church for a second. This is what we saw.

This particular parish seems to really encourage participation in the arts--they often have different installations hanging overhead. And it seems like almost every cathedral in Paris offers free concerts (as well as some concerts you have to pay for).

Friday, October 23, 2009

Eglise St-Eustache by the Forum des Halles

I had never heard of the Eglise St-Eustache until some friends took me there after Institute one night.
I think it's really beautiful.






The cathedral is behind Les Halles. If you explore back behind all of the trees near the Chatelet-Les Halles RER or the Les Halles Metro stop, you'll find the church.

And the best part?
The cool little plaza out in front of the church that houses this cool sculpture.




You can't see it in the pictures, but to the right and behind where I was standing there were tiered rows of grass where people would lay out and read, make out, walk their dogs, or have a smoke and chat. I think it's a great spot.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Also Seen at Hotel de Ville: IUFM of Paris protest

The plaza in front of the Hotel de Ville was also used several times as a "call to action" center for manifestations (protests) and collecting signatures for a variety of petitions.
The students below are professors in training (I don't know if they are in training to teach secondary school or at a University level--my guess is the former) who were protesting some changes to the way the teacher training programs at the University were being organized and administered.
Protests are not very effective. They happen way too often in Paris to have much of an impact.

Musee D'Orsay: The exterior




I think the Musee D'Orsay is really pretty on the outside. Like many, many buildings in Paris.

Filipino cooking

So, remember waaaay back when my Relief Society in the Paris ward had a Filipino cooking class? Well, before that we had a great Thai cooking class.
Here are the pictures.


This may not look delicious (since it's raw), but the spring roll-y things we made with it were AWESOME.




Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The Seine

These are the pictures I took during this walk along the banks of the Seine.





Rainstorms

I woke up at 3 this morning to a loud thunderstorm. It reminded me of this storm I watched out the window of my apartment in Paris.


Music at Place de la Chatelet

While I was waiting for a friend at the Chatelet metro stop, this was going on near the fountain.

This kind of stuff is one of the best things about living in a big city.

Chillin' with the Sistas

While in Paris I spent a lot of time with the Sister missionaries. I volunteered to go with them to a teaching appointment one week, and it turned into a standing weekly appointment.

These are the two sisters, Sister R and Sister O, that I started working with. Then Sister O went home, and Sister H was transferred in. (Sister H is the one below eating raclette).

Here we are in front of the Church on rue Saint Merri near the Pompidou Centre.

Sister R, me, Sister O

On the night before I came home, we had one last teaching appointment with E and her two daughters.
The Sisters surprised me with an awesome dinner before we went to teach--raclette!! I had never had raclette before, so it was fun to see how it works. And it was soooooo good!



So, basically you have a raclette pan with spaces for all of these little dishes to sit in. You put a slice of cheese in the dish, slide it under the heating element, and then make a little open-faced sandwich.





This is me with E and her girls on Mother's Day at church. Love them! Miss them.


On my last night, at E's apartment. Love these girls. Aren't they just beautiful. They're little sweethearts, too. Let's just ignore how pasty I look next to their gorgeous skin.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Le Petit Nicolas (Young Nicholas)

At Hotel de Ville in June there were two exhibits: one about Gustave Eiffel, and the other about Petit Nicolas.
If you're not familiar with the Young Nicholas stories, they're stories about Nicholas, a young school boy, and all the mischief he makes at home and school with his friends. They're really cute, and they've been translated into several languages.




From Wikipedia:
The humour of the books derives from their unique story-telling style: the adventures of Little Nicolas are told in the first person by Nicolas himself. On the one hand, the books are a parody of the story-telling habits of little children; for example, the author makes frequent use of stylistic features such as run-on sentences and employs an egocentric, naive point of view. On the other hand, adults are the targets of the books' humour when the straightforward and uncomplicated worldview of the child narrator exposes the flaws of adult perception. The subversive element in the Petit Nicolas thus made it an early example of modern children's literature that is centred around the experience of the child, rather than an adult interpretation of the world.
I used a little collection of Petit Nicolas stories for a couple of my French conversation classes at BYU, so it was fun to learn more about the inspiration behind the books.

Caveau de la Huchette

Another reason I will always love Rue de la Huchette is that it is the home of the very first Jazz club I went to.

I wish I would have gone sooner, but I'm glad I got there before I left, at least. (And barely. I went the night before I came home, just after a teaching and dinner appointment with the Sister missionaries.)

If you like music and you're visiting Paris, this was a lot of fun. (Please also note that it is item #46 of my 101 in 1001.)



Rue de la Huchette

Rue de la Huchette is a total tourist trap.

And I love every bit of it.


Actually, in the off-season, you'll find just as many French people enjoying lunch there as foreign visitors. There is Greek, Chinese, Indian, Italian, and I don't know what other kinds of food offered on Huchette and the small streets winding off of it.

This street is just off of the Place St-Michel as well. (I'm not lying, it's a great area).


I spent a lot of time in this area because it was right by the school where I took grammar classes 5 days a week.


But I would never get a hotel room on that street. Way too noisy late at night. Just get a hotel nearby, and then you'll have access to the St-Michel Metro and the St-Michel/Notre Dame RER stops. You can pretty much get anywhere from this part of the city.

Institute Dances in Paris...

... are basically the same as church dances in Utah.

Except in Utah practically everyone is white.




There is line dancing...


...and girls have to dance with each other if they want to swing, because there just aren't enough guys to go around.




I loved making friends at Institute. It was such a relief to know that whatever happened during the week, I could go to Institute and feel (somewhat) normal.

The best friend I made in France. He's the bomb-diggity. He's also learning English, and he understood me better in English when I faked a British accent. (I'm glad he stayed friends with me, even though I squashed his dream of serving his mission on Temple Square when I told him that mission is really only "staffed" with Sisters.)

A blurry goodbye picture. Should have turned on that flash. :)

Drinking Fountains in Paris

In Paris you will rarely find a regular drinking fountain. The one pictured below is on the Place St. Michel, about where the Metro symbol (M) is on the map below.





But of course, there are always these fountains if you've alread got a bottle handy.