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Rainy days and covered passageways… Paris

It’s the first day of rain in the eight days of being in Paris, it looks set for the day. The natural thought is to visit indoor places. E.g. museums. If there are queues normally, they are even bigger on rainy days.

On a website, there is an article that tells you what to do on rainy days. We are all inspired by it and the “covered passages”. These passages are basically long indoor walkways with shops selling art, stamps, postcards, walking sticks, umbrellas, sweets, stuffed animals, bags, etc. The galleries have a stylish artisan feel with numerous quirky nik-nak shops, restaurants, coffee shops and more.

We stop for coffee and are presented with the biggest and the most colourful croissants I’ve ever seen.

Above these malls with a central high glass ceiling, there are also apartments and some old-fashioned hotels.

The Galleries started in 1786 and went on in number being extended in the nineteen hundreds with a total of 183 of them. Sadly only 25 remain today. Napoleon was a major influence in their expansion. Given extreme winter weather they were a way of getting around parts of Paris without getting wet or cold. The decor is ornate as are the floors with bright colours and lots of hanging lights and signage.

So, we have a fun ninety minutes exploring and rummaging in the shops. These are the early forerunners of shopping malls, it’s a shame many have been destroyed.

I’m on a mission to seek out some old French prints. In our waterfront retreat in Victoria in each bathroom I have original and some copies of a French artist’s work. Basically, it is a row of various French dogs peeing up against a wall, whilst above them a cat watches. So funny and so French.

I found some further galleries that majored in up-end exclusive fashion and clothing. I’m writing this sitting in a coffee shop opposite Galleries Lafayette. Jezzabel is shopping and promises this fourth time here will be the last on this trip.

Let’s see.

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