Hope you have as much much fun looking at it as I had making it…
Hello there, I hope you have/had a great weekend!
Mine was brilliant, but I have to warn you… the total opposite of glamorous.
I spent my saturday night in the catacombs of Paris… (this is the point where my Mum gets a heart attack… in case you are reading this Mum, please continue reading and remember I´m safe and had brunch this morning, lol)
Where do I start…
Well, first of all I want to remind everyone that going in by yourself is NOT a good idea, and that we (a group of 12 people) had 2 guides that knew the catacombs by heart because they have been going down at least once a week for years AND had a map just in case… and had given us a list of things to bring along.
So much for the warning.
I think the best way to explain this incredible experience is to tell you everything chronologically:
First we went down a shaft, but we had to hurry because we were quite a bunch of people and… well… you are supposed to be descrete. The shaft was about 20m deep and had and iron ladder to climb down. When everybody was down, we started entering the catacombs. Our guide choose his path well (hello irony, but I think he really did it on purpose) because we had to walk through knee high water. So even with gum boots you were just soaked. The “Cataphiles” (those who go down often) were very equiped and wore fishing trousers or whatever the name is. Anyway point: They were dry!
But who cares, it was fun and it was a challenge. I was just grateful they had told me to bring a headlamp (very useful… especially if you have to pee). But some “Cataphiles” are even better equiped (or not) and have one of those:
It was great fun to walk along the passages and corridors. At one point you go around the corner and you end up in a tiny room where someone had sculpted a castle and gargoyles!!! And the best thing is: You meet other people. Seriously, at the end of our trip we ended up with 30 people!
We went to several rooms but the best ones didn´t really have an easy access, so if you are claustrophobic… better don´t go there
At one point my frined Caroline took of her shoes to get rid of her wet socks.. and this is what happened: no kidding, they were smoking!!!
But our favorite room was the last one, where we spent most of the everning. It was huge and looked actually like a bar. All the walls were painted on and it took me a lot of time to take it all in.
I must say, it was really impressive. Did you know that the catacombs go along for about 300km underneath Paris? And there are people who go down there regularly (some of them even for over 20 years and not even creepy!)
Beside the fact that every word down there starts with “cata” you must know that there is a whole “cata-code”. First of all, you are nice and respectful to everyone you meet (most of them have known each other for years and you are a “tourist”), second you do clean up after you. The catacombs are increadibly clean because nobody ever leaves anything behind. There is no garbage whatsoever and once a month all the cataphiles go down there for a “cataclean”.
Sometimes they organize huge parties in there with live gigs and sound…
Anyway, at the end of the night we were all wet, covered in mud, smelling damp… but happy. Because… well, did you ever dream of a place where it´s calm, people are nice and time seems to stay still…?
Time is a funny concept.
When you are a kid, you can´t wait to grow up and live your life and you feel like time is riding on the back of a snail… a very lazy snail.
One day you turn 18, you finish school, you go to university (or not), you start a new job, you start to discover that you actually “start” to have a personality and sudddenly… you are 27 and have no clue how time went by so quickly.
You realize that you spent the last years living in the dust cloud left by time rushing off on a motor cycle…
I don´t want to get into this too much because I think we all have our own idea about how we lost, wasted, used or enjoyed our time… but me actually thinking about it started a few days ago. I was at a party at a friends house, I was squatting the kitchen as always, and I was talking to that guy about the movie “Hook”.
Do you remember that movie? Dustin Hoffman, Robin Williams, Maggie Smith?
Anyway, Hook (Dustin Hoffman) has a clock museum and goes balisitic when they start ticking and destroys all the clocks. Well, what can I say, I can relate to that.
I have several watches, clocks… in my flat, but none of which is working.
I HATE THE TICK TOCK!!!
Why? Good question. I actually never thought about it until I met this guy.
Maybe because it makes me aware of time ticking by…? But the funny thing is, I love clocks… So my flat is full of watches and clocks and whatever could tick but they are all frozen on a special hour/time.
You heard me right. Each one of them reminds me of a special moment… a moment were I have been very happy.
Time is a funny concept.
But even though it seems to rush by… sometimes… if you are lucky… you can grab tiny chuncks of it and keep them in your heart, forever.
I wish you lots of love, happiness and luck for this year…
I spent New Year’s Eve in a beautiful old stone house in Franche-Comté. It was great fun and magical because it was well prepared (thanks to Florian, Mia and Anna). We had home-made foie gras (thanks to Anna’s parents) with Champagne to start the evening. Then we had beautiful lobster from the Ritz (thanks to Florian) and a delicious main course which I am too lazy to translate now…sorry… still a bit tired from the weekend.
We danced all night and had drinks near the fire place… I finally went to bed around 6am! Me! Ha! Love it ;-)
Pics by Mathias & Mia