Well, hello again! I have returned to Paris after a long break. This means I can sit down and organize my thoughts somewhat coherently after adventures abroad and many late nights imbibing and thriving.
I must admit, although I was not in Paris for all of August, the weather this entire summer has been gorgeous. It's totally made up for the swampy wet misery endured last year, and it's reformed my opinions about the place. Yes, you can wear flirty summer frocks here without wool tights, really! Picnics and long evenings and lazing about in the park has been the norm, and my umbrella was forgivingly useless for once.
It's been a good summer for exploring, and I've taken quite a few daytrips (and continue to do so as September is also being kind to me).
One rather sweltering afternoon, I took a trip out to Domaine du Sceaux.
It's a small Chateaux with expansive gardens right on the RER B line, just outside of Paris. It's a stop I've passed going out to Orly without much of a thought for it. Alas, this is the year of André Le Nôtre, and the tourism board is pushing all of his landscaping efforts for your wandering pleasure. Gladly.
I mean, they really are something. Huge, sweeping grounds with lawns, orderly rows of trees, ambitious canals and water elements, with plenty of hidden nooks and winding paths to explore along the way. It's very regal.
While the midday sun is hard to shoot in, I sometimes can't help the time I'm in a place.
I usually try to wait out the more attractive late afternoon light, but oftimes I just have to shoot away as I go.
It wasn't Versailles, but it would have been a very comfortable place to settle regardless. Nothing to be ashamed of.
There wasn't anyone visiting it either, so it was nice to meander around. Truthfully, they didn't have much except some old furniture and paintings of long-dead aristocrats, but, eh. It was a nice break from the sun.
Outside was where the action was, as the whole town uses this park as their backyard. All but a few brave souls were clustered in the shade of the orderly box trees or the tall plane trees along the Grand Canal.
Is it worth the trip out? Sure, if you have the time for it. I always tell people visiting on a limited time frame that if they see one grand Chateau, go right for the jugular and spend a day at Versailles. Once that's been seen, it's nice to visit some of the smaller places with no or little crowds to have to battle with. Plus, some of the chateaus get snippy about picnics on their lawns, but this one didn't. Pack a nice lunch and watch the swans glide down the canal.