lindsay emory

Welcome to the official site of Lindsay Emory, author of books with kisses and sass including the Sorority Sisters Mysteries, The Last Plus One, and the forthcoming The Royal Runaway.

Filtering by Tag: paris

On Faith, Flame & Notre Dame

I had another blog post planned for today but I decided to write about what’s on my mind.

Yesterday, the cathedral of Notre Dame burned in Paris.

The spire fell. The roof collapsed. People from around the world watched, heartbroken, gutted, as fire swept through a house of worship that had stood for nearly a thousand years. All over social media people posted their stories of visiting Paris, loving Paris, being inspired by Paris and this landmark of the city that stood for 700 years before the Eiffel Tower was built.

On my last trip to Paris, I posted my own blog post on my feelings about the city. This was my contribution to yesterday’s grieving on Instagram:

And the more I thought about it, the more my sadness washed away. Because once you realize that it’s the spirit of a place that moves you, not the mortar and stone, then you can’t grieve what was destroyed in a fire. Because fire does not destroy love, faith, worship, community, hope.

Notre Dame was - is - a symbol. Of civilization, of art, of creativity and devotion and, perhaps most importantly, continuity.

It has always been there. My grandparents’ grandparents’ grandparents’ would have seen a very old cathedral in the middle of Paris. Humanity doesn’t have many of these monuments, especially living ones, like Notre Dame was (is.) We have a fair amount of desiccated antiquities and ruins but someplace like Notre Dame, that decorated for Christmas and Easter, held regular services and hosted a continuous parade of guests and tourists is extremely rare.

So I think Parisians, especially, but the rest of us too treasured the life we felt there. If a building as grand and as beautiful as Notre Dame could thrive for centuries, then just maybe we - ourselves, our nations, our communities - could too.

Losing that dream hurts.

Until you remember that we are all dust. And we are all more.

We are bones and skin and failing organs. And we are laughter and passion and dreams.

Notre Dame is a spire and stained glass and stones. And it is faith, memory, and celebration.

For me, I won’t grieve the loss of stone and slate when there is so much to celebrate.

As of the time that I’m writing this, there has been no death associated with this fire. The Paris fire department was able to save part of the structure, all of the surrounding buildings and was able to remove many relics and pieces of art from the cathedral. After I read this thread on Twitter, I was doubly impressed with them. Further, stories are starting to come out about the Chaplain of the Paris firefighters who was the one to save the sacrament and the blessed crown of thorns. (The French word for firefighters is pompiers. That is a really great word, right?)

You take all that into account and then you see a photo like this and, well, all I can do is give thanks.

On a total writer-ly note however… I’m just saying… just imagine what ancient secrets and priceless treasures could be revealed by a huge fire at a thousand year old building site. I mean, if Dan Brown doesn’t write that plot bunny, I might take it up.

To my beautiful Parisian and French readers, I’m sending warm healing thoughts your way.

And for all of you who observe Passover and Easter this weekend, have a blessed celebration.

The blog will be back next week with my usual dorkiness.

Romance, Hermes & Paris

It's February! Valentine's Day! Time for romance and love and roses and champagne.  And what could be more romantic than... PARIS?

paris street
Last month, I was fortunate to zip across the Atlantic and spend a few days with my sister who, until two weeks ago, had called Paris her home for over two years.
I was also able to visit her last year, and as this was my third trip to Paris, this visit wasn't as much about the sightseeing and touristy to-dos as it was chilling with my sister, shopping, strolling, and eating.
Shopping
Each time I've gone to Paris, it's been in January, during the Soldes, the twice-yearly fortnight where every single store has some kind of sale going on.  This is a good strategy for all budget-minded ladies. Tickets to Paris are pretty much as cheap as they're going to get in January and then when you get there, everything is on sale!  Ok, not everything.  But a lot.  Even...
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Yeah. There is an actual Hermes sale. We went my first day there, I was still dressed in my airplane-grubby comfiness and we were there for at least four hours. (I say at least, because I was a little confused on what day and time it was).  It was like Luxury Disneyworld.  You stand in line to get into the sale (with some fabulous people watching all around you, of course). Then you stand in line to check your coat.  Then you are checked by security who log onto a form (that you must carry around) what Hermes items you are wearing into the sale. (The answer for me, naturally, was zero. See, above, airplane grubbiness).  THEN you stand in line inside the sale for different sets of items. A line for silk scarves, a line for wool scarves, a line for enamel jewelry, etc.
There were no purses or wallets. But there were shoes! And ties! And amazing Hermes bathing suits that belong in Megan Mulry's Roulette.  And yes, I made a small purchase. How could I not?
There were so many other busy,pushy stores. Some of the Soldes experience is just the browsing and people watching and elbowing.
And of course, I made several stops at French pharmacies, including the famous Citipharma. Something about a French pharmacy makes even muscle relaxer gel seem so glamorous.
pharm
Eating
 Since I was lucky enough to stay with my sister, she cooked me several lovely meals and we ate out at some new and old favorites.
Breizh Cafe is one of my hands down- must-eat recs in Paris.  Four years ago I walked straight in, but today you'll need a reservation.  It's known for crepes and artisanal ciders. I dream of this place when I'm back in Dallas. Delicious.

Charcuterie, seaweed butter crepes and cider at Breizh Cafe

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Another favorite meal of mine is eating falafel in the Marais.  I've been to L'As du Falafel several times but this time we tried the spot across the street, Mi Va Mi,  which  was just as delicious and ate a la Parisienne, by the trash cans.  It's a sisterly tradition.
As I visited just after the Charlie Hebdo massacre, you could definitely feel a difference in the Marais, which was traditionally the Jewish Quarter, where soldiers with machine guns  were stationed.  But there also signs like these posted everywhere.
je suis
charlie
Touristy To-Dos
 
As I said, I didn't visit all the must-see sights this time.  The one time I saw the Eiffel Tower, I was on a train and hurried to grab this shot, French Kiss style.

The Eiffel tower is right there - behind the building.

Of course I've been to the Louvre and the Musee d'Orsay but I'd never been able to see the Picasso Museum until this visit, as it has recently reopened after a massive multi-year renovation.
I would definitely recommend this compact yet thought-provoking museum (buy advance tickets! I'm so glad my sister did or we would have had a 1+ hour wait to get in).
The museum is organized thematically, not chronologically, and really helps you see the depth and breadth of Picasso's works.

chandelier

:portrait
picasso
This was one of my favorites, a painting of his studio,  Blank Space. To me, it said so much about the creative mind:  "Here's my work. Here's what I'm going to create next. And it could be anything."
studio
Chilling
Just being in Paris is the best part of being in Paris. It's romantic, it's spontaneous. It's the type of place where you may walk by the neighborhood wine bar and be pulled in for several hours of sampling bubbly wine and enjoying charming French/Swiss/German men's company. Hypothetically.

Just saying.

The city is also exhausting and overwhelming and historic and very now. It's one of my favorite places in the world and I'm so blessed that I was able to spend some time there with one of my favorite people.  It's every writer's dream to have an apartment in Paris and for a few days, I could pretend that I did.
apt
And yes, I was inspired while I was there. I had a kernel of a book idea and my sister helped me plot it out. Let's just say one day there could be a book featuring a sexy wine seller, a widowed chef and mistaken identities on the Left Bank.
A newsletter will be going out soon, with super big announcements. Make sure you sign up for my newsletter  and I'll include insider pics of my sister's amazing flat on the Left Bank.
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