Thursday, March 7, 2013

Parc de la Villette

We have been enjoying the warmer weather for the past couple of days.  On Monday, we went to a spectacular park, Parc de la Villette.  The park has open grassy fields, playgrounds, and crazy walkways.  We played on playgrounds as we came across them. This park was spread out over many acres, and play areas were included here and there throughout the park.  In addition, one of the park's designers was a deconstructionist.  There are many “follies” built throughout the park as well which was very interesting to see. The Canal de l’Ourcq ran through the park making for a nice walk parallel to the water.  After walking and playing on the playground for a while, we then made our way to a large green space.  There were lots of school groups and families playing on the green.  Liam LOVED watching the school groups play games, especially duck-duck-goose.  After just running in circles for a little while, we eventually made some friends with children who had a ball.  Amelie and Liam loved being free!!
The playgrounds never have the "normal" equipment that we are accustomed to, but it is always fun.  This large spinny top seemed a little dangerous to me, but the kids loved it!

Liam on the bridge over the Canal.  You can see the walk way next to the canal as well as the upper walkway that ran parallel to the canal.  We walked on the upper portion so Liam couldn't get any ideas of trying to jump into the canal.  You can also see one of the "follies" in the background.  It is the red structure.  There were many different follies all throughout the park.
Look at her GOOOOOOO!
Liam wanting to be as close as he could to the games.

We’ve also spent a couple days in a row at our neighborhood park after being out during the morning.  We are beginning to see familiar faces, and have had some conversations (in English, or course).  I have been amazed at the gentleness and generosity of many of the older elementary aged children.  They have shared things with us like lollipops, snacks, balls, and more.  They are also very careful to stop their games to make sure the little ones are not harmed.  It’s been really sweet to see these interactions happening all over the playground.  

After having so much fun chasing and kicking the ball around, we decided to buy one for ourselves.   Amelie is loving “playing soccer.”  This also is a perfect way to overcome the language barrier and have interaction with other kids.  The neighborhood park that I have referred to is really a square, Place de la Republique.  It has a playground area which is next to two muddy fairly flat areas.  In the center of the open spaces is a bricked off small ampitheaterish area (I am horrible at describing things…I apologize!).  Lots of people come to what I call the park.  People often eat a meal sitting on the benches around the park or on the brick steps.  There is a sidewalk that circles the park and children will bring their bikes and their razors to ride laps around it.   Everyone rides razors, even adults.  Liam has even tried to gank a razor but he didn’t get very far.  This turned into a situation where the other child was gracious and allowed Liam to have a ride. 

On Wednesday we went to story time at the American Library.  We were able to meet a couple of people and talked to one mom for a long time.  They gave us some great tips, like riding the bus is WAY easier with strollers than taking the Metro.  We are going to try this out and see.  We went home by Rue Cler, which is a street that does not allow cars.  We bought some fruit from a local vendor to eat while we strolled.  Another tip the mom from the library gave us was to eat at Chipotle.  We decided to do that on the way home for lunch. :)
This picture is outside a pastry shop on Rue Cler.  Liam actually licked it.....silly boy! I have realized that we do not take nearly as many pictures as we should to show the beauty of Paris.  Handling two kids and managing a camera usually doesn't go hand in hand.  I am trying to take mental pictures.  Also, it's like taking a picture of the Grand's difficult to capture the beauty.
This is how we look many days on the Metro coming home in the afternoon....nap time!!
In case you were wondering, we do still work…and do laundry…and clean…and all of those fun aspects of life.  Today was spent around the house catching up on all of those things.


KatieMGreen said...

I LOVE your updates!!! I look forward to them everytime!!! Can you explain what a "follie" is?

Bobby and Kelly said...

Great question! I probably should have gone into a little more explanation in the post. If you go to the following website it explains what they are far better than I can! :)