This blog is definitely returning.

…Because I am taking an architectural history class this semester. With site visits. Sound familiar? I’ll be writing about all my adventures in Philadelphia and its environs with one of my last cities classes of my college career! Get ready for a post on Thursday!

Winter Break: A Photo Essay

Apparently I said I would blog on a “semi-regular basis” or something, which was a smart, proactive, and foreshadowing description of my “recent” activity on this blog seeing as I did not write a single blog post last semester. I wrote a thesis though so I guess that’s an accomplishment. Oh, and no more Facebook for me, so I have no idea who will see this post. (email subscribers? are there any of you out there?)

With winter break coming to a close I will present to you some of the world seen from my eyes (or rather, the lens of my cell phone) during that time.

One of three completed knitting projects. #mylifeissad

One of three completed knitting projects. #mylifeissadorhilarious

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PHILLY MEETUP

PHILLY MEETUP

Dirty Projectors at Carnegie Hall 1/11/13

Dirty Projectors at Carnegie Hall 1/11/13

mom's office computer holds a trove of treasures.

mom’s office computer holds a trove of treasures.

Newest addition to JFK boulevard btw. 30th and 31st.

Newest additions to JFK boulevard btw. 30th and 31st.

Not a super thematic photo essay but oh well. The photos are fun though!

Finally, I feel compelled to mention that today is a very special girl’s birthday…

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Happy 5th birthday to the most photogenic dog in the world! I love and miss you sooooo much.

I’m not dead!

Dear readers, contrary to popular belief I did not fall off the face of the earth after returning from Paris. I’ve settled into HCA (which once upon a time were called HPA, as I learned from my job) life, and am enjoying the delicious CSA vegetable share that Nate, Peter, and I are splitting for the summer. (However, I’m not really enjoying the mouse  that I see scurrying around from time to time).

This could be sort of an epilogue-y post ending the ariellebold enterprise, but I sort of want to keep the blog and update it on a semi-regular basis. We’ll see how that goes until the semester starts.

So yeah. United States. I’m really loving it here now. I’m not feeling nostalgic for France as much as having a newfound appreciation for some American ways of life. This realization could be due to my being a student/boarder more than a tourist, because I am definitely nostalgic for some of the places I’ve visited in Europe outside of Paris. (Am I bad to say I miss Germany a lot?) Since I’ve been back home, I’ve been coming up with a mental list of things that have been culture -shocking. Some of the hardest things I’ve had to adjust to coming back from abroad have been:

  • Floor numberings in America being one shorter than they are in France. (Maybe this difference is one of the reasons why America has an obesity problem.) I tend to think I’m a lot higher up now in a building than I actually am. And get confused when I realize I’m lower.
  • Businesses being open on Sunday (and grocery stores being open past 2PM). I have this idea in my head now that I can’t go anywhere on Sunday. This is wrong! In fact, now that I mention it, 24-hour locations (read: Wawa, CVS) are sounding pretty awesome to return to as well.
  • BOY did I miss diner food. That’s not really a negative adjustment, I’m very excited to have diner food back in my life.

Otherwise, nothing super new and exciting on the horizon except that I’m starting some thesis research, so actually that is exciting. Last week I got stung by a bee on my toe while taking out the garbage, which is a pretty sad way for a bee to die as I didn’t provoke it at all. Yesterday, a week after this bee sting occurred, my toe decided to swell up, which looks funny compared to the other toes but is sort of scary seeing as I’ve never had this reaction to a bee sting before. So now I’m on some antibiotics and wish I had a time-lapse memory so that I could figure out if the antibiotics are working! I’ve saved the stinger for curatorial purposes…to be placed in the museum about me which will be erected in my honor at some point in the near future. Hey, maybe this blog post will make an appearance on the wall description that accompanies it. So meta!

Turning 21 in a few short weeks means I can patronize the newly erected Beer Shop-ee (for cider) and Bryn Mawr Bev (for cider), in addition to the most histper pub + cheese and meat and bread that Ardmore has ever seen. Have I mentioned how much I miss cider? or apfelwein? or German beer? OR the glorious apfelweisse!

Nate’s Guest Post: Marais and Louvre

Hi Arielle’s blog friends, this is Nate and I’m writing a guest post!

On Sunday (yeah it’s really late this time, sorry!) Arielle and I began our day by meeting up with Kelsey (who is in Arielle’s a cappella group), Kelsey’s cousin, and Kelsey’s cousin’s roommate for felafel in the Marais. The original felafel place we wanted to go to was closed so we just went to the one across the street which, I’m told, was just as good. Even though it was a Sunday, all of the shops in the Marais were open because it is the Jewish neighborhood of Paris. We ate our felafel messily while making our way to Place des Vosges.

Here we are.

Five years ago, when I was in Paris with my parents we stayed really close to Place des Vosges and one day while out for french coffee my dad discovered Gypsy-Jazz band called Borsalino playing just outside Place des Vosges. He came and got me and my mom and we listened to them play for at least an hour. We also bought their first album which was called (strangely) Place des Vosges. So this trip I wanted to go back and see if I could find them. It was a total shot in the dark, but sure enough, when we were finished eating we wandered over to the spot that they had played in five years ago and we found them jamming! Here’s a picture of me with them. I’m not sure why I look angry, it was really cool!

I also bought their second album to bring home for my dad.

Then we walked down Rue de Rivoli until we found the Louvre. We didn’t go inside, but we walked through outdoor area with the giant glass pyramid (which always makes me think of The Da Vinci Code) and took some more pictures:

inside Hôtel de Sully

Arielle and Kelsey

We then had dessert at Angelina which is a spot famous for its hot chocolate, but it was way too hot to get hot chocolate so I got sorbet and Arielle got a mont blanc (cream-filled pastry).

[Arielle here, writing from home: I finished a sentence or two but left most of this post intact, Nate didn't have time to edit it before we left! So here it is!]

Giverny

Nate and I went to Giverny on Monday. Monday happened to be a jour ferié (national holiday) so the place was plein de monde. We took a train from gare Saint-Lazare to Vernon, which took about 40 minutes, and then walked three miles from Vernon to Giverny on a marked pedestrian/bike path which took about an hour and a half. After eating a quick lunch in a restaurant just outside the estate, in we went! I can let the pictures speak for themselves, it was a super hot and sunny day which made everything stand out. It was iris and peony season!

view of the Seine (which runs through Vernon!) on our walk to Giverny

Nate accidentally bumped into me when I was taking this photo, but I think it resulted in a monet-esque picture!

meandering into water lilly territory…

getting in touch with nature

view of the gardens from Monet’s house

 

Up North

Saturday was another day of firsts for me and Nate. Sort of – all but one place that we went to I hadn’t seen before. We decided to explore the northern part of Paris: Belleville and Montmartre. We started off by taking the metro to Belleville, eating lunch at a brasserie (because I failed to look up *where* an outdoor market was even though I knew which metro station it was at), and then we walked to the Parc Buttes-Chaumont.

“It is necessary to doubt words.”

We didn’t explore the park all that much because it was really hot out and didn’t want to walk very far, but we found a nice shady spot on a hill that was quickly taken over by parents and their babies.

Also walking down the hill was a group of old-people-tourist-hikers.

We left the park and took the metro to Montmartre to see the Sacré-Cœur and the Moulin Rouge. Both neighborhoods were insanely crowded — I don’t know why I forgot it was a Saturday. Sacré-Cœur is always crazy on the weekends, and ten times worse on a nice day.

view from the top

note my horizontally flying hair please

We then squeezed our way down the hill and through people to “explore” the streets of Montmartre, but everyone was doing the same thing we were. So we didn’t do much exploring after all.

this guy was doing tricks on a lamppost right by the church- unfortunately I didn’t catch him with his legs out horizontally! And I promise this photo isn’t photoshopped — the sky was this blue and the man really was on a 20 foot pole.

Our day was not complete without a quick trip through the Red Light District to see the Moulin Rouge! A first time for me in that neighborhood and seeing this iconic monument.

Nate is up next writing a GUEST POST WUUUUUU about what we did today! (because yes I know I am writing these all a day late)

Touristy day with Nate!

Nate and I have had a day of monuments, museums, and friends! I mapped out our adventures on Google Maps and it totaled to more than 4.4 miles which is crazy! Nate is continuing on his streak of bringing really nice weather to Paris because today was very hot again.

We set off bright and early by foot to the Rodin Museum. I had never been before because they were doing renovations the first part of the semester, and by the time it opened I knew I wanted to save the trip for when Nate was here. I am really glad I made that decision because the museum in the springtime is filled with greenery and flowers and is so beautiful! They way they space out the sculptures among the estate is impressive too.

The Rodin Museum is wedged in between views of the tops of Les Invalides and the Eiffel Tower, so we got to see the tops of both monuments!

Nate and I in the garden — the museum is located in an old Hôtel Particulier (which I think belonged to the Rodin family at one point, and was turned into a museum — didn’t have a chance to read the info panels). All the roses were in bloom!

Le Penseur — The Thinker

Rodin’s signature

After we finished at the Rodin Museum, our plan was to walk to the Champ de Mars for a picnic lunch. Our route, however, took us right past the Invalides, and I wouldn’t have been able to live with myself if we had walked by a monument and Nate didn’t see it. So we walked through Les Invalides (and had a bathroom break) before having lunch.

In front of Les Invalides. I told Nate he looked liked an American because when I was in Normandy, Odile’s husband pointed out that all the American tourists were wearing “casquettes” (caps). Nate forgot his sunglasses at home because he wore his regular glasses on the plane, so his hat will do for now!

We walked to the Eiffel Tower on rue de Grenelle and found a produce store and a boulangerie. After buying our lunch stuff, however, we happened upon a huge market street and a supermarket! I didn’t take any pictures at the market because I stupidly forgot to charge my camera the night before and it was dying. But we still had a delicious meal.

After lunch we shamelessly asked people to take our picture with the tower. Neither of us had any pressing desire to go to the top though. The lines were insane because it was so nice out.

The lady took three pictures of us…one vertical, one horizontal (the one above), and this one…

So many hilarious things about this picture. Was she trying to fit the whole tower into the frame (which wasn’t a problem before)? Was she trying to be artsy? Romantic? Plus her finger got in the frame in the left hand corner, which is the cherry on top of this picture.

We walked from the Champ de Mars to the Arc de Triomphe through Trocadero and Avenue Kleber. I mentioned to Nate that there was an exhibition on transportation in the Musée de la Cité et Patrimoine de Paris, so on a whim we decided to go. The exhibit was (to me) a little overwhelimg and not that pedagogical, but it was still fun. And we got to play with legos at the kids corner in the end. Nate and I were also amused by the collection of international bathroom symbols in front of the restrooms.

Then we made it over to the Arc de Triomphe and had a failed attempt at taking a photo of ourselves with it, so we asked someone else. This girl had just been on Facetime with her friend and showing her the Arc de Triomphe, Steve Jobs was probably freaking out to himself with excitement.

failed attempt

Nate looking very small next to this monument.

This was again another monument which we considered going up to, but decided not to. We headed home for a little while and then met Nate’s high school friend Jacob for dinner. We ate with him and two other kids on his program on the Seine right across from Notre-Dame, and then we met people from my program on a different location on the Seine. We unexpectedly stayed out until like 11 because the sun sets so late here! I honestly thought my watch was improperly set.

Fun and busy day. I am writing this on Saturday morning instead of last night, but I can say that more adventures will be had today!

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