When my sister and I first started planning our trip to Paris, it took us a while to find dates that would fit both of our schedules. We needed to plan around. . . work commitments; Easter; graduation; kid-moving; our husbands' travel and work commitments; avoiding spring break travelers; etc.
When we finally set the dates, we had no idea we would be traveling into the peak of spring blooms!
Yes, we left the bleak, spring landscapes of Michigan. . . and Wyoming. . . and landed in . . . this!
We spent one delightful afternoon visiting Claude Monet's gardens and home at Giverny, in Vernon - about an hour's drive from Paris.
For me (and I think for my sister as well), this was the highlight of our trip.
As a gardener, the visit was incredible!
Seeing the mix of blooms, the colors, the structure of Monet's gardens was just . . . well, indescribable.
The gardens were reconstructed, lovingly, beginning in 1976. Ten gardeners are constantly at work in the gardens (I saw some of them. . .), striving to keep the garden fresh and looking as much as possible like the one Monet knew.
As a photographer, all I can say is . . . WOW!
There was just . . . so much. . . to capture.
And, of course, there was the art. We visited the Musée de l'Orangerie the day before our visit to Giverny. The Musée de l'Orangerie is home to Monet's crowning work - Nymphéas, or the water lily series. My poor, lame photograph can't even begin to bring these large-scale panoramic works to justice. . .
but our trip to l'Orangerie was the perfect prelude to Giverny. (We followed up with the Musée d'Orsay, which was also fabulous. If you like Impressionist work, don't miss either of these museums.)
We loved seeing Monet's gardens, his home, his studio. It was fabulous. Some of my photos even captured what my sister and I called "Monet water" -- the little ripples and shadows so characteristic in his painting.
The house was charming - and perfect in every way.
Gardening. Photography. Art. Inspiration -- pure and simple!