Saturday Snapshots July 21

Once again, Saturday Snapshots framed by a Paris in July backdrop…

I was pleasantly surprised to find the open space outside the Louvre being used not only for tourist line-ups but as a spot for a family outing.

Dad can keep an eye on Sis biking, while Mom gets baby ready for a video shoot.

And Li’l Bro rides into the sunset.

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Saturday Snapshot hosted by Alyce of At Home With Books, Paris In July at BookBath and Thyme for Tea.

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Saturday Snapshot & Paris in July

Here are my photos for two blogging events: Saturday Snapshot hosted by At Home With Books and Paris in July over at BookBath.

In August, 2010, I was in Paris, stayed at a small hotel on a side street in the Latin Quarter, across from the Sorbonne. And just recently I was reading the book The Hundred-Foot Journey (my last post). In the book, the protagonist Hassan was offered a place to start his own restaurant, at 11 Rue Valette, near the Panthéon. When I came to that part of the book, I quickly went Googling and found, ta-da! Hassan’s restaurant was within walking distance of the hotel I stayed in.

This is what happens, you fuse together reality and fiction… that’s the joy of reading. And I could even imagine stopping by the restaurant to have a taste of Hassan’s haute French cuisine.

No, I didn’t get to Hassan’s Le Chien Méchant, but found this little cinema not far from our hotel on another narrow side street, Cinema du Panthéon, and it was showing the acclaimed film Des Hommes Et Des Dieux.

I had an urge to go in and watch it, but on second thought, I was in Paris, a French film showing in Paris would probably not have English subtitles.

I did get to see the film Of Gods and Men (2010) when I came back home, French with English subtitles.

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Saturday Snapshot June 23

… Amina Sinai and Baby Saleem arrived home in a borrowed Studebaker…

Don’t laugh. But I’d never heard of a Studebaker until I read Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie in recent months.

You can imagine what a pleasant surprise it was for me as I came out of the Book Sale at Crossroads Market. The name on the back of that antique truck had an almost electrifying effect: STUDEBAKER.

Wow here it is, a real-life, bright and shiny Studebaker. From the antique license plate at the front you can see it’s a 55. I know the one that brings Baby Saleem home has to be 1947 or older, and definitely not a farm truck.

Here are the back, side, and front views… exact sequence of my discovery. O what joy. Those two people watching me take photos of it with my iPhone must have thought I was … uh… born yesterday.

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Thanks to Alyce of At Home With Books for hosting Saturday Snapshot… for keeping my eyes peeled, making finding a farm truck as exciting as watching a sunset.

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Saturday Snapshot — June 2

Saturday Snapshot hosted by At Home With Books.

At long last, Spring has finally sprung. For those of you in a much warmer climate, you can’t imagine we’re just beginning to see greens and buds.

Here are some of the photos I took while taking an evening walk in my neck of the woods a couple of days ago.

Wildflowers emerge:

The evening sun turning the green trees into golden fall colours.

And this morning I find all these buds on a pine tree, haven’t seen them so red like berries before:

Yes, Spring is finally here for us.

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The Rant of the Armchair Traveller

From the comments in my last post, seems like Egyptology is a favorite subject of many, if not now, at least some time in our curious life. I’ve had the chance to visit Egypt twice during my travels to the Middle East. Since now is the warm month of May, kicking off the travelling season, and alas, since going anywhere far is a remote possibility for me at present, an armchair revisit is timely, if only to suppress burning wanderlust.

Here are some file photos from my last trip to Egypt five years ago. I only stayed in Cairo and its vicinity. But from my recent reading of Lord Carnarvon and Carter’s King Tut Tomb discovery, I regret I didn’t venture further to the Valley of the Kings in Luxor. However, I did see the iconic King Tut’s mummy mask at Cairo’s Egyptian Museum. Photography was forbidden, so no King Tut’s portrait here.

But I can show you another marvellous exhibit. In 1954, a Pharoah’s boat dating back four millenium was dug up in pieces and since reassembled. Beautifully showcased in another museum near the Great Pyramid of Giza. Photos were allowed here, but Arti’s pocket Lumix wasn’t enough to capture the magnificent whole. If you’re interested, click here to a full description.

Pharaoh’s Boat buried 26th Century B.C.

Another view:

The Pyramid and the Sphinx are probably what travellers go to Egypt for. While the Sphinx is a limestone statue of the mythical creature with the lion body and the human head, the Pyramid was piled up in stones. Can’t say which one is easier to make.

The oldest of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World that is still standing, The Great Pyramid of Giza was built for the fourth dynasty Egyptian Pharaoh Khufu, a 20 year construction process which concluded around 2560 B.C. (Wikipedia data) As for Arti, no exact date was needed. Standing at the foot of the humungous pile of neatly stacked up stones was an experience itself.

The Great Pyramid of Giza

Not far from the Pyramid, The Sphinx:

The Pyramid and The Sphinx

A closer look… so what if I’ve lost a nose, I still stand sit after all these years:

Let the stones speak:

and the children listen:

We were travelling in a bus through the desert, and stopped for a view. Here are some other children I saw, took this picture through the window:

Mount Sinai, the legendary place Moses received the Ten Commandments from God. At the foot of the mountain range is St. Catherine’s Monastery:

 Man’s best friend. They wait without complaint:

The desert is mesmerizing regardless of the hour:

Desert moon at dusk

While I faithfully pick up mail for neighbors gone to Paris, or read with pleasure blog posts of your recent travels, I feel like jumping on the armchair bandwagon and join the massive global tourism movement. Ok everyone, I’m coming along.

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