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Dreaming of France: 29 Avenue Rapp

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Scrolling through my Instagram& finding this image, I’m surprised I haven’t shared this particular French door for Dreaming of France before. 29 Avenue Rapp boasts what might be the most famous door in Paris. It’s definitely one of the most beautiful.



Designed by Jules Lavirotte in 1901 it’s a striking example of Art Nouveau architecture and features the very risque sculpted Adam and Eve above the door. I first saw the building in the movie Gigi as the building where Gigi's Aunt Alicia lives and where Gigi goes for her lessons in how to catch the right man. Preferably someone rich like Gaston.

Naturally when Mark and I visited Paris, we had to pay the building a visit. What struck us about 29 Avenue Rapp was how many people just walk on by, as if were nothing special, just another old stone edifice, the door, just another entry. I think even if I lived on the block, even if I saw the building and its door every single day, I would still have to pause and take it in. Not a whole …

Above Ground on the London Underground—Day 57: Mile End

Park at Mile End Image via SublimePhotography.com

If it's Friday we must be back in London. Every Friday I take a virtual walking tour ‘above ground’ on the London Underground. Using my Tube guide & my fitbit® device, my goal is to walk 10,000 steps a day roughly following along the Underground route, reporting back here on Fridays with my findings We're currently following the Central Line. Here are the previous days. This is Day 57.

One of the first London suburbs, the East London town of Mile End feels worlds away from bustling London. Still, Mile End isn’t without its points of interest. 





The nearby Queen Mary University of London located houses a cemetery in its midst. A strange thing place for a cemetery but yes, the uni came second, the graveyard came first. One of the only remaining Sephardic cemeteries in England, the Neuvo, or Novo Beth Chaim Sephardic cemetery was first used by Spanish and Portuguese Jews—making their home openly in England after centuries of persecution—in 1733. The graves are all low profile, almost flat, apparently symbolizing the equality of all in death. 



It’s not everyday that you look up at a bridge running over a roadway to see it planted with grass and trees, but that’s th Green Bridge. Right outside the Mile End Station the yellow construction—why not the yellow bridge?—connects two parts of the Mile End Park. Called the Green Bridge because the area above the bridge of the grass and the trees, the bridge is an extension of the park. 
On the lower street level are shops and restaurants and a path that leads all the way to Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. There’s a bike rental agency under the bridge too, if you prefer a ride to a walk.



As for me, I’m searching for the Greedy Cow Cafe where we can grab a burger or a steak before we set off  but also, if one is so inclined, a camel, kangaroo or wild boar burger. Thinking of the camel I rode once as a child, I just don’t think I could eat one. A kangaroo? What would Winnie the Pooh think? Actually the more I think about it, the more I’m put off meat altogether. I think I’ll just have a coffee and some lovely flaming Creme Brulee, thanks very much.

Now, off to the park we go. Next week, we’ll see what there is to see.





Novo Beth Chaim Cemetery
Queen Mary University of London
Mile End Rd, London E1 4NS
44 20 7882 5555


Greedy Cow Cafe
2 Grove Rd, London E3 5AX
44 20 8983 3304

Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park
London E20 2ST
44 800 072 2110



Counting the Fitbit steps



Day 1-56:                                                        389,590 steps/171.25 miles


Day 57: Mile End          .                                    7000 steps/2.9 miles
                                                          

Total Imaginary Miles to Date                    396,590 steps/174.15 miles







Connect with Joy Weese Moll's British Isles Friday 

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