Thursday, June 14, 2012

The 2012 students have arrived!

Undergrads at the Hotel de Sully
Today was "airport day"--all the students in the 2012 Paris Study Course (CM385D/ML385D/LS771) have arrived!

Philippe-Auguste's Wall

On the way to the Hotel de Sens

We had a couple of anxious moments at the airport (sometimes it takes a few minutes to get through customs!), but all in all, the arrivals went very smoothly indeed and we managed to have everyone in Paris in the vicinity of the two hotels by noon. Check-ins happened by 2 p.m.; everyone was able to rest and freshen up prior to setting out on a walking tour of the Marais, another tradition of the course.
This year, we started by walking down the Rue de Turenne to the Place des Vosges. Originally named "Place Royale" when commissioned by king Henri IV in the early seventeenth century, it is a beautiful example of late renaissance architecture. After that, we visited the garden of the nearby Hotel de Sully, originally the private residence of one of Louis XIII's ministers. Wandering southward, we saw a portion of Philippe Auguste's wall, which dates back to the Middle Ages. Traveling west, we passed the Hotel de Sens and its gardens--this beautiful house (now a municipal library) was once home to Marguerite de Valois, also known as "la reine Margot."

At the Maison du Faucher

The "Maison du Faucher" on the Rue François Miron, is another vestige of medieval Paris--it dates from the 14th century. Finally, we passed the church St. Gervais-St. Protais and the Hôtel de Ville (town hall) on the way to Notre Dame.

Vespers at Notre Dame

The 2012 Paris Study Course group with Dr. Elliot King

We spent some time in Notre Dame--vespers were in progress!--and then had a wonderful crêpe dinner on the Ile-St.-Louis!

Tomorrow: the Louvre and Montmartre!

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