wisteria blooming and fragrant


The wisteria is taking its time to unfold and reveal its true colours.  Temeratures are mild, days are sunny;  our windows are wide open all day long, and the house is filled with the balmy perfume.

We have three old wisterias here, each with thick strong trunks that will bend metal railings or piping with no trouble at all.   They flower once in the spring, and a second time mid summer when the leaves are thicker and greener.

We somehow missed the late autumn trim and the facade of the house is looking slightly overgrown, but we’ll let the flowers run, and then cut back, around the shutters at least.

This year is proving exceptional for blooms so far, and we feel blessed, and just hope that it will continue to the rose season … and beyond.


Paris step by step – the 3rd arrondissement

Continuing my tour of Paris, with some addresses you may find useful for your next visit.

I love the third arrondissement – it is chic, it is loved by Parisians, the place for culture vultures, the place to be parisian, the place to seek out little known private galleries, to eat on café terraces, the place to re-discover Picasso and enjoy the sixties throw back at the Pompidou, a place to wander, a place to get lost …..

Among my favourite addresses  …  and in no particular order ….

the Picasso museum at the Hotel Salé,  it has been closed for renovation for two years, will be re-opened this June – YAY!  a wonderful museum, in a 17th century building, great place to go with children, plenty of light and space and not so big that you lose the will to live …

the Pompidou centre – how can you come to Paris and not visit the Pompidou?!   A 60′s architectural monstrosity but I love it – enjoy the exhibitions that open late at night, enjoy the view over Paris from the top floor, enjoy the café in the same place , and this year until June especially enjoy the Cartier Bresson show ….


and for the history of Paris, don’t miss the Musee Carnavelet

a place to wander … the rue Charlot, full of galleries and quirky clothes shops and hip restaurants …

the Passage Moliere for its edgy design boutiques, and book shops and places to sit and enjoy a coffee ….

if you are interested in the links between French and Swedish decorative styles, then don’t miss the Swedish Institute at the Hotel de Marle, 11 rue Payenne.   Great café too!

where to stay? … for somewhere special and intimate – complete with chocolate labradors – that feels  more like visiting privileged friends than staying in a B&B then head to the Marais House ….

If you are a fan of Christian Lacroix, then stay in the hotel he decorated, le Petit Moulin, high in colour and well positioned for visiting on foot …

and where to eat… so much choice here!  … Les Enfants Rouge for a fun and authentically French cuisine , or Dessances for desserts, desserts and more desserts!


and if after all this walking and visiting and eating you woudl just like to sit down and enjoy some calm, then head to the Jardin Saint Gilles Grand Veneur, rue de Hesse, and simply enjoy the roses!


I’ll be back next week with some ideas for visiting the 4th!