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Time to slay your own dragons, ladies.

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My first kiss was an unwanted one. I was seven years old when a boy named David pushed me up against the wall outside our apartment building. Forcing his mouth on mine, his breath, hot and fusty, something sickly sweet like apple juice and milk gone sour in his gut that made me squirm. I don’t remember seeing him as I ran with my brother and the other neighborhood kids through the empty lot next door, scrabbling over the toppled trees, slick with moss, tripping over the bramble of twigs and woodsy decay, but he must have been there, his knees as scratched and muddied as ours, before he caught up with me in the driveway that ran alongside and behind the apartment building. 
As usual I’d tagged along in my older brother’s shadow. Tag, hide and seek, cowboys and indians, the games kids used to play. Outdoors, up and down the streets, no watchful mommies on red alert. Ignoring our mothers’ warnings—don’t go into the woods, don’t go into the woods—we went into the woods, woods that in fact …

Dreaming of France: Guarding the Louvre

When we entered the grounds of the Louvre, this gentleman, standing as still as the statues within its walls, gave us our first glimpse of not only the dizzying financial value of the treasures housed within its walls, but the importance of the Louvre as France's most beloved cultural institution. 


Home to some of the most famous and valuable works of art in the entire world—the Mona Lisa alone was last valued in 1962 at $100 million, and is presumably worth many times that now—and the museum, as the most visited tourist site in Paris, is worth much more than that. 


Over 8 million people visit the Louvre every year and when we were there this past spring, I have to admit it felt as though most of them had come to see the Mona Lisa that same morning. For anyone who wanted to linger and really look at DaVinci's masterpiece—like moi—it was a frustrating experience. 

Liberty Leading the People / Eugene Delacroix

Still, there is so much to see at the Louvre, there is no time to linger in front of the Mona Lisa waiting for a quiet moment. It won't come. Of course, not everyone who visits the Louvre is an art lover but presumably with over 35,000 pieces of art lining its walls and hallways there is something that will stir one to awe. 


Or perhaps a visit to the Louvre is simply an item to be checked off the bucket list?

Posted for Dreaming of France at An Accidental Blog

Comments

  1. Yes, I agree that the crowds around the most popular pieces of art are claustrophobic, and simply turning in the other direction results in some of the most amazing art pieces that aren't clogged with visitors. I love that the crowds drive me to discover other works of art.
    Thanks for sharing and thanks for playing along with Dreaming of France. Here’s my Dreaming of France meme

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