Sunday, 25 November 2012

Lucky finds

Nantes is full of antique shops and it is simply a treat to walk into one. A treat to the eyes that is, not so much to the pocket. The goodies range from jewels to books, typewriters to postcards, desks to binoculars and many old paintings. It is fascinating to just stop for 5 minutes and look around. 

I happened to chance upon this lovely pendant on one of my visits. Had to grab it for myself.

Waiting for the right day to wear it.

Friday, 23 November 2012

Double rainbow time

It's not every day that you get to see a double rainbow.

You should be super happy when you do. And I was :) 


Bought these shoes as a Diwali present for myself :) :) Loving them. 

They make me feel so HAPPY !

Sketching again

So a friend asked me to make a sketch of two people as she wanted to gift it to them on their birthday. I was quite thrilled because it's been so long since I sketched. I waited till the very last day to start as usual...and thankfully completed on time. Though I didn't think it was my best work, she really liked it and so did the recipients  so I'm happy.

I really must start doing some work. It is a sign.

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Matchbook Questionairre

Midnight. Flipping through this really cool online magazine - Matchbook. Read a questionnaire. Thought I'd fill it out since no one is interviewing me anytime soon.

Coffee I'd say. Though I can hardly make myself a good cuppa, so I end up having more tea.

Junk? Ok...socks, postcards, stamps, soaps and random interesting things I find lying in the street.

That's an easy one. It has been Paris for a long while and after visiting it, I think I'm sure. 

It was always spring, but after witnessing the colors of fall with my own eyes, I think I'd like to change that.

Huge white roses. 

Tan boots. Searching for that perfect pair.

I wake up late. Have a good brunch and go walking around the town, taking photographs, as there isn't much to do with everything being closed on Sundays. Saturdays are reserved for trips out of town or to the supermarket to gear up for the coming week. 

I didn't pick all the questions as some were kind of irrelevant. This was fun. If you wanna try it, link your answers to me. 

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Finally some work

So apart from all the road trips and excursions, I have been also working apparently. Here is proof:

Mask making with paper in a course called Narrative Images. 

Monday, 12 November 2012

Mont Saint Michel

A road trip again. I really need to remind myself that I'm here to S-T-U-D-Y !!! :D But on the other hand I also have to make the most of my time here so I'm caught in between. Gosh such #firstworldproblems.

Anyway, moving on to the gorgeous place I visited last weekend - Mont St. Michel. It is this beautiful tiny islet that gets cut off from the mainland during high tide. At the first glance it did remind us of Hogwarts or a Castle out of LOTR or even Narnia. It was really fascinating. 

The archangel after which the islet is named

And there it is - Magnificent and grand

We were faced with terrible weather when we first arrived but soon the skies cleared and the sun graced us with its warmth. It made it so much easier to take pictures, not having to balance an umbrella in one hand and a heavy camera in another. The tiny streets leading up to the abbey were filled with souvenir shops and cafes.  

Inside the Abbey

It was a really fun trip, so much in one day. Some bits were really exciting too, like how we didn't pay the 9 Euros to get in. But that is a story for another day. 

Friday, 9 November 2012

Peter Peter Pumpkin Eater

So we tried making pumpkin soup a week after Halloween and it turned out to be super delicious. The pumpkins in France are rather strange and nothing like our Indian ones. It has a hard shell which is super difficult to cut. It took us almost an hour just to cut up the two pumpkins. After that it was smooth sailing. 

Here is the link to the recipe: Do try it out, as it was really yummy. I couldn't believe that something made out of pumpkin could taste so good. 
Bon Appetite ! 

Monday, 5 November 2012

Bordeaux museum of wine

Our very last stop in Bordeaux was at the museum of wine. It was much smaller than I had imagines but quite interesting nonetheless. Thankfully the information was in English, unlike many museums I've been to in France. I absorbed all the info and clicked away happily. I even got myself a gift pack of 4 wine bottles - two red, one rose and one white. 

FYI, wine bottles were shipped to India as the weather  there was better to age the wine. There was an actual map showing the passage to India. I was so kicked. Spotted some interesting wine labels from over the years. I was also fascinated by the wine stamps, so pretty and delicate. There was a section on corks too and we manged to pick up a few extra corks lying around there. 
It was an interesting experience in the cellar of a building. A must-do if you have time to spare in Bordeaux. The entry was 3,50 Euros for students :) and it is open from 10 am to 6 pm.

Road Tripping - 2

After a 3 hour drive, which somehow seemed like 5, most of which I slept through, we reached Bordeaux. It was around 7 pm but it felt like it was 10. We were staying in the southern part of the city and it was quite deserted. We quickly checked in, dumped our bags and headed to the city to find some food. A long, long walk took us across the river and we found a little pizzeria. Dinner was gobbled down and a long walk back took us to our beds. We decided to make an early departure the next day as we just had 24 hours to explore the entire city and its attractions. 

It was rainy and sunny, weird weather, but not so cold. We reached the tourist center and picked up maps and brochures and figured out what to do. We then walked down Rue Saint Catherine, the most famous shopping street in Bordeaux. It started with fancy brands and labels and then continued to tiny boutiques and cheaper stores. The street was full of tourists like us. 

After a short lunch break, we came across a huge fair. There were crazy rides and a huge ferris wheel. Made for a pretty picture next to the historical structures. Then, we headed to the Jardin de Public. We weren't so lucky as they were shutting all the gardens in the city due to strong winds. We found it silly until a pretty huge branch fell, just missing my friend's head. So I snapped a few pics and then we headed out.

A few museums, bakeries and chocolateries later, we ended up in a wine shop, buying Bordeaux wines. Spotted one bottle for 7020 Euros. Gosh, really now. After all our wine shopping, we looked all around for a nice yet inexpensive French restaurant. We finally found one that even had live music. This handsome old man was singing and playing the piano. It was perfect. We enjoyed our last meal in great ambiance. 

Bordeaux was really like Paris without the people. And the traffic. And the attractions. Haha. It was a charming little city, which can be seen over a weekend really. It was a good trip. We drove back through the countryside, enjoying the view. It rained most of the time we were on the road and we had some brilliant skies thanks to the setting sun. And soon we were back home in Nantes. 

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Road Tripping - 1

Already a month in France. I can't believe how quickly time has flown by. It seems just yesterday that my visa hadn't arrived and I was mourning with my vodka-tang and suddenly I'm sitting here in this semi-cold room, with my toes freezing. And I have almost forgotten that I came here to study, thanks to the two week break we just had after just two weeks of college. I think I like the French, so generous with the holidays.

So after Paris, we recuperated in Nantes for a few days. Laundry, groceries etc were done and then another trip was planned. A road trip - a first in France. First stop at La Rochelle and then 2 days in Bordeaux.

5 girls, 1 Mitsubishi car and a lot of bags :)

La Rochelle is about 2.5 hours from Nantes. The journey was really nice, great roads and a wonderful view. It rained for a long, long time and then it was clear for a few hours. Thank goodness for my umbrella. 

Among all the grey stone buildings, we came across a little open air market. It was a pop of color - green, red, yellow. We looked all around, fascinated by all the interesting fruits and veggies that I don't find in India.
And then, right in the middle of it all, was a little stall selling Indian food. Oh, I almost jumped with joy. Chicken tikka, Kofta and Naan. Oh, what happiness. We got talking to the chefs who were Kashmiris and living in France for the last 20 years. They were so glad to talk to someone in Hindi. It was fun and they didn't let us pay for the Naans :) So sweet. And the food was yummy. 

We just walked around town after that, taking in the sights. It's a really small town and we could walk all around in under three hours. It has a few tall towers and a dock, filled with boats. Very Dexter-ish.  

It rained and then it was all sunny suddenly. We even saw a rainbow. Actually the first of many on that trip. We looked around, and finally headed to an island to go look at the beaches. It was sunny but freezing cold. And super-duper windy. The coldest day of the month I think. 

It was a lot done in half a day. And then we headed off to Bordeaux. Part two coming up soon.