Day Trip to Giverny, and Monet’s Inspiring Gardens

Day 4 for the Casual Tourists started with a 6 a.m. alarm. Our train to Giverny departed at 7:30 a.m. and we were meeting up with a friend we had made on our last visit to Paris.

Florent was at the train station awaiting our arrival. Bonjour and two cheek kisses later we were strolling down the platform catching up on how life had been the past two years.

We settled into our seats and chatted most of the way to Giverny with little bits of pause when the crazy Eastern European man sharing our railcar would pipe up and interject into our conversation.

“You ride the train all the way from New York? Or are you from San Francisco? You are American I know. You came from New York. That is long train ride from there.”

In a heavy accent, he continued rambling and saying who knows what else. At one point I was putting on some make-up and he passed my seat and said, “you look beautiful mademoiselle.” Florent looked at me and said, “don’t feed the troll.”

At our stop we made our way to a bus that transported us to Giverny – an adorable little town that no one would give a second thought of it it weren’t for the fact it is where Monet lived and created his masterpieces. The town survives on this fact and has done well with creating a stream of tourists who visit the farmhouse and gardens of the impressionist master.IMG_2853

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Ron and Florent catch up on conversation while perusing Monet’s garden.
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I think I could contemplate life a bit surrounded by the exquisite color combo’s in the gardens.

If you love flowers than this is a garden paradise. It was an explosion of variety and colors. I got some inspiration for my own yard back at home! After we explored Monet’s farmhouse, which was a modest place that included a wonderful art studio, we journeyed to his water garden.

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IMG_2881Without the chattering tourists, I could see how this place drew plenty of inspiration for Monet. Colors and contrasts, variety and peacefulness were sure to embrace him on his visits. I was really surprised to see his affection for Asian art when we entered his farmhouse, and he carried it over to his water garden where he planted a large bamboo grove.

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Giant red poppy.

After we finished touring the gardens we made our way up the road and found a lovely little restaurant built in someone’s backyard. I was very excited at the design of the place and snapped a few pictures in hope that maybe we can recreate a smaller one in our own backyard at home. Of course, this plan has created a few eye roll moments for Ron, but since I have photos and a video of the place, I am not giving up so easily.

All in all, our day in Giverny was a pleasant one. We had a nice lunch with a friend, got some great photos of flowers, and learned about Monet’s life. We also looked more forward to seeing Monet’s masterpieces at the Musee D’Orsay later in the week.

Tomorrow we lace up our shoes for a day at Disneyland Paris! See you then!

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