Walk in the Park

The density of Manhattan’s skyline makes me appreciate the political will required to preserve public open spaces in urban areas. A visit to Liberty State Park makes for a delightful break from the “concrete jungle”.

Walk in the Park

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Golden Dome of Les Invalides

Among the Lutetian limestone structures of Paris, the golden dome of Les Invalides glows at the moment of sunset. Before its illumination activates, I’m not sure the Tour Eiffel can match it.

Golden Dome of Les Invalides

Moon Over Brooklyn

Downtown Manhattan eventually ends, giving way to Brooklyn in the distance under the rising moon. I took this picture at the end of a weekend trip, just before heading back home; there was an appropriate symmetry to a sunset skyline marking the finale of a New York trip.

Moon Over Brooklyn

City of the Living and City of the Dead

Though additional cemeteries in Paris were banned in the late 18th century, the Montparnasse Cemetery was opened in 1824 because the area had not yet been incorporated into the city. Today, it’s an odd dark space in the otherwise bright city. The idea of adjacent blocks belonging to graves and apartments has a polite kind of symmetry.

City of the Living and City of the Dead

Brightest Tower

After nightfall, the Eiffel Tower puts on an hourly strobe light show that transforms the tower into a sparkly pillar in the city skyline. Much as a flash can brighten a photograph, this effect also means that long-exposure photographs of the tower make it the brightest object in the skyline by an order of magnitude.

Brightest Tower

Boats in the Seine Near Notre Dame

The bridge in the distance is the Pont au Double, and it is one of several that connect the Rive Gauche to Île de la Cité. That central island fascinates me because it is the site of the medieval refounding of the city. The island used to be packed with residences alongside government and religious buildings. Today it is almost entirely dominated by the latter buildings (like Notre Dame on the right), yet I heard that census information still lists a few hundred people living on the island. Where are those last homes hiding?

Boats in the Seine Near Notre Dame