We took advantage of the Paris Greeter again and just as before, it was well worth it. If you have some time and really want to get to know an area, I cannot recommend it enough. The personalities of the greeters are unique, but the common link is that they all share a passion for their area.
Today we met Martine at the St. Paul Cafe and walked through the old Marais. She grew up in the area and with her Jewish heritage, had many stories to share about the occupation. More information will come about that in a post purely about the occupation. On the walk, I felt as though I saw the city as it was in the 16th century. Check out the gallery below to see some sights we saw and click the images to get more background information.
If you thought these were put here to trip people, I’m afraid you are wrong. They are basically bumpers so that the carriages would not hit the wall.
This is the typical appearance of a path for the carriage. See the ruts on both sides? That is for the wheels. There is a larger courtyard behind me where they would turn around.
The Marais did not have running water for a very long time. People used to go to the bathroom in this area of the courtyard. They had to go by the Seine to pay for showers and laundry.
Here you see the facade of the St. Paul/Louis Church.
The “James Dean” of the Jesuit priests used to provide 5-7 hour sermons from there. The ladies would sit under him and if they needed to go the bathroom, a chamber pot would be delivered on spot. Ladies did not wear underwear until after the Revolution. Only prostitutes could have been found wearing underwear before that.
St. Paul/St. Louis is a surprisingly good find on the Rue de Rivoli. It seems to combine Catholocism with some Paganism. Look carefully at the details as the Jesuits influenced the church.
Courtyard of a hotel which means mansion in English.
This is supposed to be the best Fallafel in the Marais, but I’m afraid it is not my favorite. So far my favorite is King’s Palace just down the Rue.
Falafel=Fried humus-like ball in pita with cabage, onions, and eggplant