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DEC
31st

A tourist in Paris

Last 2009 pictures

Grande Roue Place de la ConcordeThese are the last pictures I took during this year 2009. Céline was on duty this New Year's Eve so I deceided to spend most of my time hanging around Paris like a foreign tourist. So I started from the Trocadéro, then to the Eiffel Tower, one of the monument I photographed the most in 2009. After that, I followed the Champs de Mars to the Invalides where Napoleon's tomb can be seen. I took the Alexandre III bridge (the most beautiful in Paris) to reach the Concorde place, headed toward the Louvre museum through the Tuileries Park, to finally end on the Cité island shoting the Notre Dame cathedral.

DEC
27th

Celebrating Christmas

With our godfamilies

Xmas at l'Etang SecWe are now used to celebrate Christmas with Céline family on Christmas Eve. As a result, we were at l'Etang Sec on December 24th evening to have diner with everyone, including Youdaline. As usual, the diner was excellent with great apetizers home made by Magali which are always a success, followed by foie gras, cailles and mashed potatoes ending with the buche. Everyone gave his presents to the others and we spent a great christmas eve.


Xmas at BeynesChristmas Eve was followed by a lunch at Florence's brother place in Beynes with Céline extended family with her uncle, ant, cousins, ... We also had a great time, were given very nce presents. The lunch was excellent with delicious foie gras and salmon. Bunthaï cooked the meal : a saraman and then the buches, because there were tree of them ! We had the opportunity to take several pictures of everyone and for some of them, they are really good ! Hope you enjoy them.


DEC
24th

Les Champs Elysees

By Night

Les ChampsWe were supposed to go to the cinema to see Avatar but we arrived too late and the show was already full. After that we decided that it was a good opportunity to go Paris by night and have a walk on the Champs Elysees were there is also a Christmas market. After we parked the car, we walk one hour long to see the multiple stand were you could find so many things that some some of them are far related from Christmas. Who cares ! We had a great time, took nice pictures and went to see Avatar on December 26th.



DEC
20th

Sparkling Christmas Tree

Finally

Sparkling Christmas TreeWe were not very on that this year. We made our 2009 Christmas Tree like five days before Christmas, and we might not be able to enjoy a lot the fact that it is enlightening out livingroom. But it is our last Christmas for only the two of us, we made some rles about Christmas.First, the last week end of November, we bought the Kinder Adent calendar. We completely missed it this year, therefore, we do not have any Advent calendar. Then, the first week end of December we make our Christmas Tree and enjoyed it for almost three weeks, and not five days like this year !!

Thanks to this shooting, I added a new HDR picture. Go

DEC
19th

Busy working day

Saying Goodbyes

LunchLast Friday was for most of my colleagues and I the last lunch we were to have together before anyone leave for Christmas holidays. As a result, we decided to get something special and after some troubles finding place for 15 people, we ended accross the Seine river in a pizzeria. We enjoyed a very nice lunch all together and had a great time.



Eiffel TowerAfter lunch, as eeryone was so eager to get back to work after leaving the restaurant at 3pm, we thought it was better to go back home. As I was on holidays (finally) I wanted to go to Paris and take some picture of the Eiffel Tower. It turned out that Nicolas and Thomas got into my car and we went to Paris all three together. Once arrived, Nico left us and Thomas and I spent almost an hour taking pictures, (mostly me) and then left as the weather was reezing cold.


DEC
14th

Labrats

For a good cause

TastingOn december 25th, we are to celebrate Christmas with Céline extended family at lunch. It was decided that her parents were cooking the meal and in order to cook something good and not to arrive with a digusting meal, Bunthaï tried his new recipe and invited us to taste it. We are always good to go for a taste and it was an opportunity for to test my new lens. You can now find the nice pictures I took during this session.



DEC
12th

New Lenses

Fixed Focals

New LensesWhen we bought our last lens (Canon 28-300mm 3.5-5.6 L IS USM) I thought that we would never need again another lens as it covers a huge focal range. Indeed, this lens is very usefull when we are on holidays in order to avoid changing lenses everytime and get dust on the lens or sensor. The big drawback is that the lens is huge and heavy. As a result, it is not very easy to use it when we are just between friends having diner, or going out in Paris. Moreover, as it is a transstandard, it is not a very bright lens (f3.5 at 28mm and f5.6 at 300mm). So when it comes to pictures inside during birthday diner with low light, even if the lens is stabilized, we need to raise ISO and hope that people are not moving to fast so that the picture is not too blurred.

Therefore, I came to the conclusion that we needed a brighter lens that we could use inside with low light especially when Christmas is comming and that we are to celebrate it several times with our families. And if you know a little bit about photography, fixed focallenses are the brightest on the market especially because there is no zoom. And I red that the Canon 50mm 1.8 II was one of the best because for about 100euros you could have a great lens. I bought it, and indeed, you can take very nice pictures outiside when there is light and we you can close to f11 with low ISO. On the other hand, I tried to use it inside with low light and it is quite hard to take nice pictures, here is why : to get nice pictures, you need to freeze the action and have a very quick exposure time. In order to get it, you need to let a lot of light enters the lens and you do it by raising the ISO very high (from 800 to 1600) and/or by opening the diaphragm (up to f1.8 with this lens). But at f1.8, the depth of field is very short and most of the time, you think the picture is sharp but once on the computer you see that only the nose is sharp but not the rest of the face !

So I bought another lens, a Luxury one. The Canon 100mm 2.8 L IS USM Macro, with you can use either to do portraits (like the 50mm) but also to make macrophotography. The big difference with the 500mm is the price of course, but also the fact that the lens is stabilized wich allow to reduced the shutter speed. The result is just amazing and the lens is perfect for portraits in low light wich is going to be the case during Chistmas Celebrations.

DEC
3rd

Happy married life

To Alice and Frederic

Alice and Frederic WeddingWe spent the week end outside France as we were invite to join and share Alice and Frederic's happiness through their wedding in Belgium close to Bastogne, well known city for those who like cyclism with the Liege-Bastogne-liege race. Unfortunately, the weather was very bad all week end long and very cold. The civil and religious ceremonies took place in Fauvilliers, whereas the cocktail, the diner and the party took place in Le Clos Marine, a restaurant in Bizory.

Like several other people, we were staying in the house of the buffalos which is a very nice cottage where you can fit quite a lot of people. Table-football and snooker were available during our stay and the bride's parents took care of us especially by dealing with the breakfast. We had a good time and we hope that the newly wedds also enjoyed the day.

DEC
3rd

Nice Iron Lady

Eiffel Tower of course !

Illuminations of the Eiffel TowerAs you may or may not know, this year is very special in Paris as the Eiffel Tower celebrates her 120th birthday. As a result, there are a lots of celebrations regarding this event. On Bastille Day, the fireworks were as usual shot from the Eiffel Tower but there also were pictures of the Eiffel Tower through out history regarding how Paris growed around its most famous symbol.

And to end this very special year, the city hall decided that : after the sparkling illuminations that occure every hour at night, there will be more illuminations. Indeed, I was there at 10pm yesterday evening and I saw it, but not entirely. I witnessed the spakling illumnations and then there is I think a 15 minutes illuminations every day until December 31st.

NOV
15th

Busy Week End

Christmas is coming ...

Vitrines de NoelIt is the same thing every year, when November has started, Céline is wondering when we would be able to go and see the crhistmas shopwindows of the Grands Magasin, boulevard Haussman, in Paris. Last year and the year before were great because we saw them almost alone as the timing was perfect. This year we were with a friend couple and we were astonished to see that at 10.30pm a saturday night, there were still a lot of chirldren out with their parents. Moreover, the shopwindows were not as childish as they used to be. You would find teddy in champagne, cooking jewlery, not quite the thing you would raise your kid with. Anyway, we had some good time and enjoyed the night.

LunchtimeSunday midday was the opportunity for us to have lunch with Céline family. We had a dellicious cambodian peanut beaf with rice and a soup and a tasty lemon chocolate pie made by Magali for desert. We also brought a pineapple we bought at the market to use our brand new pineapple slicer we were given a couple of weeks ago. it was a great week end.



NOV
15th

Happy Birthday

Sylvie, Marion, Rany et Pierre

Chez les NounousIl s'agit bien de la deuxième salve d'anniversaires du côté de ma belle famille. En effet, la première se situe aux alentours de Mai avec notamment trois personnes du 11 mai, une du 3, une fin mars, une mi février. Mais hier soir nous fêtions quatres anniversaires s'étalant sur Octobre et Novembre.



NOV
8th

2 new categories

About pictures

I just created two new categories about pictures. The first one is about HDR pictures. It is a technic combining several pictures taken with miscellaneous explosition to obtain one picture properly exposed and unexpected to the human eye.

The second category will just show you the best pictures we took during our several trips, week end or event we attended to.

NOV
7th

A week in Rome

Really worth it !

RomeRome was a destination we had always wanted to go to. And as we were telling every one that we finally found the time to go, they were all telling us that this city is gorgeous. Small enough to make everything by foot, amazing how you face antiquities at every conrenr of the city, a great cuisine, a wonderful weather .... We had to see it for ourself !

And we definitly were not disappointed. Our hotle was closed to the city center and we indeed did everything by foot, we saw so many things, starting from antiquities to paintings and sculptures, and we enjoyed all our meals ... just a great week we spent together and we are looking forward to going back.

SEP
27th

Aurelie and Bobby's Wedding

Another happy couple !

Aurelie and Bobby's WeddingA very nice ceremony in the American Church of the Quai d'Orsay, a wonderful weather all day long which allowed everyone to take great pictures of the happy couple. And an evening spent in an amazing place : The Baronville Castle. I am sure that they enjoyed this special day surrounded with their family and friends.

With Céline, we did our best to take the best pictures we could, and we hope that what we have done will complete perfectly the photos you will get from the official photographs. It was great to share this moment with you and we hope that you will enjoy as much as we could your new life as a married couple. Good speed !

SEP
17th

Fête des Morts

A la Pagode au Parc de Vincennes

Fête des MortsDimanche dernier se tenait à la Pagode de Vincennes la fête des morts pour les cambodgiens, une des deux fêtes les plus importantes avec le nouvel an qui aura lieu le 4 avril 2009. C'est une tradition et une volonté pour la famille de Céline de se réunir et participer à cette fête pas seulement pour la nourriture présente dans l'enceinte de la Pagode.

En effet, cette célébration permet notamment à Bunthaï d'honorer ses ancêtres, sa famille, tous ces gens qu'il n'a que très peu l'occasion de voir car les quelques personnes de sa famille qui n'ont pas péri pendant la guerre sont au Cambodge. Le recueillement est donc aussi un sentiment présent pendant les festivités, car pendant ce jour, il est dit que les morts ont la possibilité de revenir parmi les vivants et partager cette journée avec eux. C'est donc une journée de fête, d'abondance et de partage avec les vivants mais aussi avec les morts. Mais avant de déjeuner, il faut donner de la nourriture pour les bonzes car ils n'ont que jusqu'à midi pour manger. Les offrandes sont donc principalement du riz mais aussi des fruits.

Evidemment, un choix judicieux de mets particulièrement déliecieux est un enjeu de cette journée car une erreur de choix serait terrible pour le déjeuner. Nems, mini nems, petits pâtés, soupe, sandwichs au boeuf ont donc été achetés sur place pour pas grand chose et surtout pour notre plus grand bonheur, notamment la soupe que Bunthaï a trouvée et qui était succulente. Le temps était au rendez-vous, la communauté cambodgienne aussi, et tout le monde a pu pique niqué tranquillement sur la prairie qui fait face à la Pagode.

SEP
15th

New Stuffs

For better pictures

Since we bought our DSLR in June 2008, Céline and I have been enjoying taking pictures of mostly everything. There are no holidays where we do not bring with us our DSLR, taking pictures of lanscapes, people, strange situations, extraodinary lights. But we had to face the fact that the frequently change of lenses increase the chance of having dust on the sensor. So after one year of use, we decided that it was time for us to invest in a Luxury lens which would provide us a wide range of focal length.

We chose the Canon 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6L IS USM wich perfectly goes with our Canon 17-40mm f/4 L USM wich is a wide angle lens. This new lens is a professional lens mentionned with the L of Luxury. It also has an Image Stabilizer (IS) and and Ultra Sonix Motor (USM) for the Autofocus. It is a grey lens wich is the Professionnal Telezoom Canon characteristic. On the other hand, buying such a wide focal length lens implies some drawbacks. First the weigth of 1.5 kg which is quite heavy. And the fact that we had to buy new bags in order to carry properly this new lens.

As a result, we decided to buy american bags made by Tamrac on of the biggest company in photographic bags. We chose a small bag for short distance and city walk (the Tamrac Velocity 8x), and a bigger one for plane traveling and big distance (the Tamrac Expedition 7x). Now that we received them, we can say that we made the right choice because now we have enough place to put all our stuffs in those two bags.


The new Canon 28-300mm L IS USM


The Tamrac Expedition 7x - The Big Bag


The Tamrac Velocity 8x - The Small Bag

SEP
14th

Fête des Chênes Verts

Forum des Associations du Chesnay

Fête des Chênes VertsC'était une première pour Céline et moi même. En effet, tous les ans à la période de la rentrée se tient la fête des chênes verts, haut lieu de présentation de toutes les assiociations culturelles du Chesnay. Et comme chaque année, Cécile met en valeur ses cours de danse avec une démonstration de danse.

Etant donné que notre niveau de danse a bien progressé depuis que nous avons commencé, cette année Cécile à fait appel à nous pour deux danses. En effet, cette démonstration de danse se compose de plusieurs danses : la valse viennoise, la salsa, le paso doble, la rumba et le rock and roll. Nous avons donc participé avec quatres autres couples à la démonstration de valse viennoise, et avec trois autres couples à la démonstration de rock and roll.

Les photos prises pendant la démonstration sont maintenant disponibles, et une fois que la vidéo sera disponible sur le site de l'école de danse, le lien sera mis à votre disposotion.

AUG
11th

Ca, c'est fait !!

Parquet Posé

Depuis que nous avons emménagé dans notre appartement, il y a bienôt un an, nous savions que nous nous débarasserions de ces moquettes pourries posées dans le salon et les deux chambres. En revanche, ce n'était pas la priorité car il fallait déjà abattre le mur du salon, faire pas mal de petit travaux et surtout faire la cuisine.

Mais ce temps est révolu, nous avons fait posé le parquet la semaine dernière et ca tue sa mère ! C'est l'occasion de fêter nos un an dans notre appart, avec un parquet fraîchement posé et avec ces derniers amménagements, la fin des gros travaux dans l'appart. Il reste encore quelques fils électriques qui trainent par-ci par-là mais rien de très encombrant.

Voici les photos de l'appartement avec la moquette, puis sans la moquette et sans le parquet mais avec le bordel un peu partout et enfin, la libération avec un parquet posé sur les 52m2 du salon et des deux chambres.


AUG
11th

One week in Meyrueis

Peacefull Holidays

Holidays in MeyrueisNous voilà de retour après des vacances à Meyrueis. Céline était déjà en vacances depuis quelques jours quand je l'ai rejoint sur place. 6h30 de route à parcourir la France sans vraiment grand monde ... faut dire qu'à 6h00 un vendredi matin, c'est peut être un peu normal.

Nous avons donc bien profité des ces vacances loin de paris et du boulot. Visites de grottes, ballades en forêt et picnic au bord de la rivière, petite escapade à Toulouse pour visiter des amis. On en a profiter pour faire le marché et surtout pour passer une après midi entière à visiter Carcassonne. Petit passage obligé dans Millau et enfin, visite de La Couvertoirade et de l'abîme de Bramabiau.

Nous avons aussi profité de la maison en faisant quelques siestes à l'ombre des pins, pas mal de barbecues pour les repas, du ratissage après la tonte des bancels. Le village était aussi en fête notamment avec la soupe au pistou et une grosse fiesta la veille de notre départ avec groupe folklorique portuguais au menu.

Ces vacances nous ont permi de nous reposer afin de revenir en pleine forme pour le grand changement dans l'appartement : la pose du parquet. Il nous faut donc retirer l'ensemble des moquettes du salon et des deux chambres avant que l'artisan ne viennent poser le parquet en milieu de semaine prochaine.

JUL
28th

Paris Fun Fair

Jardin des Tuileries

Paris Fun FairWe only went there because Céline had vouchers for most of the entertainement within the fun fair. We were with Magali and Laurent and we had four sets of vouchers so that we were able to all gain free games.

As you can imagine, most of the vouchers were "one free game for one bought" and some of them were "one grame free", so we tried as much as we could to use those which gave us one game free. Laurent was the first to try the flying chair, than we all did the big wheel and had the opportunity to see Paris from above, Céline and magali did a smal rollercoaster, we did a water entertainement, won two cuddly toys (a dog and a camel), Laurent and I did the slide and I got injured and Magali and Laurent ended the night with a flight simulator. We had a lot of fun the all four of us, especially because we only spent 10 euros for four people in two hours and a half. After that we went back to Laurent's appartment and then went back home.

On Sunday, we went for the first time on the banks of the Seine to dance. We did some salsa, a bit of chachacha and saw people dancing West Coast and Argentin Tango. We spent a nice evening and ended having diner in the Thing Thing which we haven't been going since a long time. Unfortunately, we do not have any pictures as we were there to dance.

JUL
16th

Eiffel Tower Birthday

120 Years

Bastille Day in ParisI was not supposed to be in Paris yesterday evening. I first wanted to go but when I heard that Johnny was playing live music for free, I knew there were going to be so many people that I could not have enjoyed the party. In addition, Céline was working all day long so why bothering ? But, as I was surfing on the net, I red that Paris Mayor also asked to celebrated the 120 years of the Eiffel Tower on this Bastille Day and the firework was made by the Groupe F, one of the best pyrothecnic group ever. We already have the opportunity to see what they are capable of (La Face Cachée du Soleil), and it is gorgeous. Anyway, after that, it was impossible for me to miss what could be the firework of the year !

I prepared myself with my camera, battery loaded and an extra one, memory card empty and an extra one, my tripod, something to eat just in case, a small water bottle, my sweatshirt, my ID and the two optics we have. I put everything in my bagpack and waited until 6.30 pm to leave for Paris. The fireworks was only beginning at 10.45pm but I first needed to reach Paris, then park my car wich was going to be the hardest part, and then reach the Eiffel Tower and find a nice place to take great pictures. It was a good idea to leave early because I first got some traffic to reach Paris and then I spent almost half an hour to find a place which was a bit short for my car. So I spent most of the evening wondering wether the police was going to toe my car or not !!!

Then, I easily reached the Trocadéro, which was unfortunately closed for the show ! Man, I now have to follow the people going around the Trocadéro to reach one of the many bridges on the Seine River to be able to see the show. As a result, we all ended on the Bir Hakeim bridge, but as it was quite early (7.45pm I think) there still was some place close to the fence. I stayed still, opened my tripod, put my camera on it to see how it was going to be at night and I was quite satisfied. I was just afraid that the few people in front of me might ended on every picture I took. Wich is the case on most of my pictures.

As I was dreading that something like this could happend, I tried to minimized the place that those people could take on my pictures. Moreover, as my camera was on my tripod, I did not want to change the setting regarding the place were the fireworks would take place, so I stayed at 28mm, 35mm max in order to have the widest view of the Eiffel Tower and around. As soon as the fireworks started, what I fear became true. I have the back of the head of the guy in front of me on my 150 first pictures. So I zoomed a little bit and it is better on the following pictures. And it turned out that most of the fireworks were on the Eiffel Tower or between it and the Trocadéro. So I knew I could put the Tower on the right side of the pictures and miss nothing.

The show was just amazing, so many colors, different shapes and type of bombs ... que du bonheur ! Then I had some trouble to get back to my car, lost myself a little bit but eventually reach the right street and thank God my car was still were I left it five hours before. I easily reach the périphérique and in twenty minutes I was home. Then I spent some time to quickly see if I did nice or bad pictures and went to bed. Definitely something I would like to do with Céline.

JUL
15th

Bastille Day

In Versailles

Bastille Day in VersaillesLike last year, we gathered ourselves just in front of Versailles Castle to watch the Bastille Day Fireworks. What was special about this year is that the foreworks was joined with music composed by Maurice Jarre who died this year.

As every year, at this time of the year, I try to watch as many firemworks as I can so I can train myself and improve the way I shoot fireworks. And like last year, I am not proud of what I have done with the Versailles Fireworks. Last year, I went with my tripod but as we all stood up, I quickly left it to shoot hand free. So this year, I did not bring my tripod, but this time, everybody was sitting and it was far from comfortable to take pictures. That is the reason why the pictures are so good as I expected.

JUL
5th

Medieval Show

In the Castle of Coucy

Coucy à la MerveilleThomas is one of my new colleague and one day, he was talking about a show like the one in the Puy du Fou. He got my attention and he gave me more details about how the show was made, where it took place, etc ... After that I talked about it to Céline and we decided that it could be a great opportunity to spend a nice evening with friends and family. So we asked aroud us who was in for a great show not to far from Paris, a two-hours drive more or less. We got only few answers and we finally were seven to go.

What is the show really talking about ? The story takes place during the 100 years war in the Coucy Castle. The people are demonstrating against the lord who hanged the leader to make an example of him who defied his authorithy. Unfortunately, his lover can not accept his death and swear she would get revenge. With the help of his father who is a blacksmith, she manage to get a magic sword whith which she defeats the lord and win the freedom for her and her people.

Yes the story might be a stereotype, but it works for children. But what is great about the show is that it is divided in three parts. The first and the last one are quite usual : the crowd seats on the terraces. But during the second part, the crowd is welcome to rise and walk among the castle to see it at night. This part is the best of the show because you can really feel the medieval atmospher. Eventually, we had a great evening, had a lot of fun, took nice pictures and we can only advise you to go to the show.

JUN
30th

Celebrating Summer Again

In Bougival

Saint-JeanWe did not know that the Saint-Jean party was taking place this Saturday in Bougival. We were told that it was this Saturday on Thursday after our ballroom dancing lesson. Unfortunately, Céline was working this whole Saturday until Sunday morning. But I remembered that last year was a nice party. We even danced with Céline on a couple of songs.

So I decided to even if Céline was not there to join me. I want for several reasons. First I knew that Cécile and Vincent were going. They are a friends couple who is dancing with us and Nina and Alexis on Thursdays. So I knew that I would not be alone. Then, I was not very proud of the pictures I took in Chatou during the fireworks. So it was for a very good opportunity to train and especially to use for the first time our wide angle to take picture at night. I spent a very nice evening and took some pictures that are for me very good compared to what I did last week.

JUN
24th

Celebrating Summer

In Chatou

In ChatouThis time of the year is pretty nice. First because the weather is mostly fine and sometimes hot, then because you can smell holidays coming, even if it is only for one week in early August, and finally because you have all those little party organised by small towns to celebrate the summer, the music, the St Jean. These are very good opportunities to go outside, enjoy life, spend some time with friends and take pictures of course.

In fact, we were supposed to go to our town party this Saturday evening. First because there was a ballroom dancing show and then because last time we went was in 2003 I think. Anyway, but we got a call from Chloé who was suggesting us to go to the Chatou party. We hesitated and finally decided to spend some time in La Celle Saint-Cloud party before going to Chatou's. We saw a bit of the ballroom dancing show which was not very exciting. Then we left for the Rabeats concert a bit further down the Seine river, on the Impressionists Island.

Chloé was already there when we arrived and Sophie joined us a little bit later. We enjoyed the end of the concert alltogether and then the fireworks. And we were a bit disapointed by the fireworks. First, they shot it behind trees so we could not see everything properly, then the music was not completly in adequation with the colors and shapes of the fireworks and quite frankly sometimes it was boring as nothing was very exciting. The good surprise is that the pictures we took of the fireworks are much more nicer than the fireworks itself !!

JUN
13th

Cambodian Art

Guimet Museum

Guimet MuseumFlorence have been learning cambodian since three years and today's visit was organised with his cambodian class. We has an appointment at the Guimet Museum where you can find the biggest Khmers collection outside Cambodia. We had a two hours guided tour which was very interesting. We were explained the three big cambodian period : pre angkorian, angkorian and post angkorian periods.

We were explained the evolution in the sculptures regarding the fact religion was evolving, one god was more worshiped at this time and we could see it in the several sculptures of this period. We also learned the multiple exchange between Cambodia and Thailand, India, Vietnam and how we could find in all these countries several commonalities in the way they built temples, the way they located their cities, etc ...

JUN
1st

Afternoon in Paris

Enjoying the sun

Burger partyIt was a long time since we went to Laurent's place, and Sunday noon, we were invited for lunch. To understand why we had this lunch, you need to know that last Christmas, Laurent was offered a cooking book on hamburgers. Cook book might be a bit ambitious but the book is well built. You start with the bread, then the sauce and finally, the different recipes for several hamburgers.

So, for this lunch, Magali brought the home made bread, we brought the dessert (a home made mango ice cream) and Laurent prepared the rest of the lunch. For starters we had salmon hamburgers, and the meal was made of chicken and veal hamburgers, lettuce, tomatoes and of course fifteen differents sauces to season our hamburgers.

And after this low-balanced but nevertheless delicious lunch, we took a walk in the neighborhood, going from the Madeleine, to the rue de Rivolli, spending some time in the Luxembourg parc, walking on the quai de Seine, and coming back through the place Vendôme. it was a long walk in a sunny and hot weather after which we were a bit tired. We finally went back home and spent the rest of our day just recovering and relaxing.

MAY
31st

Stormy Cloud

Rain is coming

Stormy CloudWe had a very hot and warm week. The weather was so nice, and the temperatures were so high, it was almost unbearable. But as the wetherfocast expected, with hot and warm weather comes storm, heat lightening and rain.

Céline and I were in our living room, enjoying this sunny weather when suddenly, ther was no more light, it was like the night just felt. I went on the balcony to see what was going on and I just could not believe it. A huge big Cumulo Nimbus was occulting the sun, but the light was unbelievale. I stopped thinkning, run to grab the DSLR and shoot the cloud.

It is one of the most amazing thing nature offers me to see, something I think I am not about to see again in a long time. But I do not care 'cause I did the right thing, wich was to shoot this irrealistic scene.

MAY
16th

Museum Night

The Louvre

BoulogneWe decided at last that we would enjoy this Museum night, we enjoyed couple of years ago. Last time we were with Edith, Emeric and Anne. We visited the Orangerie, Orsay Museum and finished at the Invalides. This time we were with Karène and Nicolas and we decided only to go the Louvre which we all visited a long time ago.

We entered the museum at around 7pm, grabed a plan and went straight to the oriental antiquities. We spent almost three hours in the museum, going from mesopotamia, to Iran antiquities, Persic to Eygptian antiquities. We unfortunately finished with Egypt wich attracts a lot of people, therefore the visit was a bit worse than the first we made. But we spent great time walking around thos old pieces of art, sarcophagus and others sculptures.

But after three hours of walking, most people were tired and we did not have diner so we went to Nation to eat nice food, in a well-known place of Nico.

MAY
10th

Magali's Birthday

And a great walk in Versailles

BoulogneMagali's birthday is actually today but of course we celebrated it yesterday. First we were supposed to picnic in Versailles' garden but when Magali looked at the weather forecast, the previsions were not as good as we expected. Eevntually, we decided that it was safer to eat inside and then go outside and take a walk in the gardens of the Versailles' castle.

The lunch was delicious, and Magali was allowed to open her presents before we left for the walk. Florence thought that the MacBook was going to be a surprise for Magali but she figured it out several months ago, but she was still happy to get it. After that we finally left to go to the gardens. We were lucky as the weather was very nice when we were there and we came back when the weather turned bad. We walk quite a bit and we aslo did a little tour in a small boat.

We had to spilt in two teams of three : Magali, Bunthaï and Laurent in the frst one, Florence, Céline and I in the second one. For all of us it was our first time in a small boat and we had a lot of fun. We also were able to take very nice pictures especially because we had a very nice view of the castle and the foutains.

MAY
5th

Boulogne sur Mer

Nice and calm week end

BoulogneIt was a long time since Céline and I did not take some time off. We needed to be just the two of us, find some time to talk about everything and nothing, our future together, the future of eachother at work, what we are longing for, the work we stil lhave to do in the appartment .... you know, just being the two of us, wife and husbnad, lovers and enjoying this time far from Paris.

Boulgne sur Mer was a destination we have been thinking since a long time ago especially because of Naisicaa, one of the biggest aquarium in Europe. In addition, there are a lot of things to do and seee in the area wether you go south or north. And we were lucky because the bread and breakfast we were staying in was owned by english people so we spoke english all week end long. I tell you, that was real holidays. SO, we did go to Nausicaa, visited Wimereux and went north to the Cap Gris Nez and Cap Blanc Nez. Unfortunately, we not very lucky with the weather as you will see on the pictures we took.

Anyway, we spent a very nice week end over there, enjoyed our stay with Mrs and Mr Gale, loved Nausicaa and hope to come again but with a better weather.

APR
4th

Boat Taxi

On the Seine river

Ballroom DancingAlmost a year ago, we bought two tickets for a cruise on the Seine river with boat taxi. The thing is that the tickets were valid only for a year. Thus we decided to use them before it was too late. And we got lucky as the weather was preatty nice during our ride on the Seine river. But we did not want to be alone on the boat taxi so we invited Karene and Nico to share this little trip.

The cruise lasted about an our, we saw the Grand Palais, Notre-Dame, the Louvre, the Eiffel tower and most of Paris bridges. As the weather was perfect we could enjoy completely the cruise, the nice views of Paris and we tried to take the best pictures we could.

FEB
9th

A Week in Chamonix

Great holidays

ChamonixCéline and I could not remember the last time we skied, and we know that we never did it together since we are together. As a result, we had not skied since at least six years. But you know what they say, it is the same with riding a bike, once you learnt how to do it, it lasts or life. The only difference is that you still need a couple of minutes to get your confidence back.

Anyway, we were in Argentières, a village closed to Chamonix. Nina and Alexis friendly welcomed us in Nina's mother appartment right down the ski tracks. First we were very lucky as the day after our arrival, it snowed almost all night long, therefore we had a very good snow the whole week. Regarding our schedule, most of the time we were on the ski tracks at around 10.30am until 3pm. It left us a bit of the afternoon to do something else like going or a walk in the village, going to Chamonix or a little shopping.

But we did other things besides skiing. In fact, Chamonix is very closed to the Mt Blanc, the Aiguille du Midi and the mer de Glace. The last is a huge glacier on wich you can walk during summer and ski during winter but the prices are too expensive for us. But we went there anyway just to see the amazing landscapes. The trip over there is preatty cool as you take a dedicated train to climb up there and you have and overall view on the valley.
We also went on the top of the Aiguille du Midi wich allows you to see so far away. The view is not only on Chamonix valley, but you can see the Jura, Switserland, Italy, the Mt Blanc of course and all the northern Alps, it is very impressive.

And of course we also enjoyed the local food and especially the melted cheese, the excellent cooked meats. We went several times to the restaurant and it was always excellent and we ate like voracious as the meals were delicious. It was for us a very long time since we went on holidays with friends, but it was a very good experience and we enjoyed very much this week off Paris, breathing fresh air, having fun, taking a lot a lot of pictures and we went back ready to resume our daily life.

FEB
9th

A Ballroom Dancing Show

our first experience ...

Ballroom DancingThe Courbevoie Ballroom Dancing Club is one of the biggest in Paris west subburb. And this week end, the club was celebrating its 40 years. As a result, a big show was organised on saturday night. Actually, there was a competiton all day long. We could not make it during the afternoon as Céline was attending the Barati Show in the Palais des Congrès.

On the other, we did not have any plans fot the evening so we went there. As it was for us the ballroom dancing show we were attending, we did not want to loose to much money if we did not like it. Now, we know how things goes and for the next show, we will spend a little bit more money in order to get a table, to be closer to the dance floor, and therefore to go more easily to dance.
During the evening we saw the semi final and final of the standars dance and the final of the latina dance. It was very impressive and so nice to see. But the most amazing we saw this evening was the exhibition of the professional world champion in latina dances. The show lasted a couple of minutes but it was so elegant, romantic, extaordinary, fast, perfect ... There is a long way for Céline and I to reach this level of perfection. This evening allowed us to see more precisely how people dance during competition and it will drive us in our research in perfection.

FEB
8th

White Coat

and a big mess on the roads

SnowSaturday was a special day for me as it was the first time this year that I was working. In fact, we had to speed a little bit up to respect the delay we were given, so two of my colleagues and I were working saturday.
And as we heard it on our way to work, little snow was excpected for midday. We tried to check the weather while we weere working but we did not have the opportunity. On the other hand, when we left, we saw that it was not snowing at all. On the other hand, one I got on the highway, I saw the first snowflakes coming from the sky.

A couple of minutes arter that, the first accident and the right lane closed. I lost some time there but once I left the accident behinf me, it was nice to drive. Nice until the snowstorm crushed on the highway. People were driving so slow that some of them had troubles to resume driving. But the worst arrived once I got out the highway. Snow was everywhere onthe roads and nothing was done to clear the roads. As a results, the unexperiented drivers could not drive properly and to leave their cars on the side of the roads. Lucky for me, I manage to reach our apprtment back, not without bumping into a car but with no car damage fotunately ... Anyway, it took me two hours to come back when I only need 30 minutes during the week.

And once I was back home, I manage to take those pictures in order to show how beautiful it can be when everything is white.

JAN
31st

Paris in the Cold

Among the worldwide tourists.

the kitchenWe had not the opprtunity to go to Paris in the last six months. We wanted to take pictures of the blue Eiffel Tower because of France European presidency but we did not. We decided it was time for us to go back to Paris and do some sightseeing, especially around the Eiffel Tower.
As Céline was having a medical course in paris, we took the opportunity to walk in paris. Unfortunately, the weather was so cold that we did not really enjoyed the walk and we could take our time to do the best pictures ever. Byt we manage to walk during one hour and half from the Trocadéro to the Eiffel Tower back and forth and it was great. We hope you will enjoy the pictures we took during this afternoon.

You also may have noticed some changes in my website, and first of all, I am glad you saw the changes. I wanted to improve my website since a couple weeks and I finally found the time and the information to do it. So I started to modify some pages the same way I changed this welcome page. But they are still some pages that look like the way they all use to be. I just need some more time to complete the change and I hope that this new appearance will please you.

Céline and I wish you all a very happy new year 2009, hoping that we will share even more pictures than last year. take care of you all.

JAN
9th

Hello 2009 !

A life's work ...

ChristchurchFirst of all, I just wanted to wish you all a very happy new year 2009, hoping that this new year will bring you happiness, luck and success in your projects.
One of Céline and I New Year's resolutions was to finally finish going through all our New Zealand's pictures, and we made it. This is why you have now the opportunity to see our last pictures from Mount Cook and Christchurch. I know you have been waiting for them since we came back, and we are sorry we make you waiting. But here they are and we hope you will like them.