Friday, July 06, 2012

Travel Plans: France 2017

That title sounds rather futuristic doesn't it? Traveling to France in 2017 may feel like I'm planning way too far in advance but I like to plan ahead and this way I feel as if I'll have more of an incentive to research, plan and actually go to France. This post is my affirmation to travel. Why 2017 you say? Sentimental reasons mostly. That year marks 100 years since the Battle of Vimy Ridge, a very important event in Canadian history and one where my great grandfather fought. I plan on attending Remembrance Day celebrations at the Vimy Ridge Memorial, a beautiful monument to all the men that gave their lives in that battle.

But while I'm there I plan to visit other parts of France. After all, traveling overseas can be expensive and I don't want to waste any time that I have in the area. The means extensive research though so I've purchased the Eyewitness Travel Guide for France. I swear by these guides ever since I went to Greece. They are heavier to carry because of the glossy pages and photos included but I found it well worth it. These guides show you what you'll be seeing to give you an idea of what's available. While I haven't read the guide yet, I do plan on making a list of the things I want to see but for the meantime I started with things off the top of my head.

Joan of Arc Statue
Mont St Michel
Arc de Triomph
The Louvre
Pont du Gard
Vimy Ridge
Eiffel Tower
The Alps
Pont du Gard
Bayeux Tapestry

Lascaux Caves
Juno Beach
Chartres Cathedral
Musee d’Orsay
Notre Dame
Notre Dame at Rheims
The Chamoix Valley
Arenes de Nimes
Abbey of St Denis

I also have a list of books that are about France, take place in France or are written by someone of French nationality that I'd like to read. Almost all the authors are male though so if anyone has any suggestions for female authors please let me know.

My Life in France – Julia Child
Tender is the Night – F Scott Fitzgerald
The Hunchback of Notre Dame – Victor Hugo
Les Miserables – Victor Hugo
Swann’s Way – Marcel Proust
All Quiet on the Western Front – Erich Maria Remarque
Cyranno de Bergerac – Edmond Rostand
Death in the Clouds – Agatha Christie
The Man in the Iron Mask – Alexandre Dumas
Les Dames aux Camelias – Alexandre Dumas
A Sentimental Education – Gustave Flaubert
Saint Joan – George Bernard Shaw
Joan of Arc – Mark Twain
Lord Hornblower – CS Forester

Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme – Moliere
Life, a User’s Manual – George Perec
La Bete Humaine – Emile Zola
The Lais of Marie de France – Marie de France
Un vie – Guy de Maupassant
The Mystery of the Yellow Room – Gaston Leroux
The Phantom of the Opera – Gaston Leroux
The Incredible Painting of Felix Clousseau – Jon Agee
The White Company – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Accursed Kings Series – Maurice Druon
The House in Paris – Elizabeth Bowen
The Little Prince – Antoine de Saint-Exupery
Vertigo – Boileau & Narcejac
The Gallic War – Julius Caesar

Kiki’s Memoirs – Kiki de Montparnasse
A Moveable Feast – Ernest Hemingwy
A Social History of the French Revolution – Norman Hampson
A Son at the Front – Edith Wharton
A Year in Provence – Peter Mayle
Birdsong – Sebastian Faulks
The Bourne Identity – Robert Ludlum
Day of the Jackal – Frederick Forsyth
Anais Nin Diaries
The Historian – Elizabeth Kostova
Paris: The Secret History – Andrew Hussey
The Mystery of the Blue Train – Agatha Christie
Old Goriot – Honore de Balzac
Paris 1919 – Margaret MacMillan
Possession – AS Byatt
The Razor’s Edge – Somerset Maugham
Scaramouche – Rafael Sabatini
The Sun Also Rise – Ernest Hemingway
The Tropic of Cancer – Henry Miller

There’s also a list of movies by French directors that I would like to watch.

Beauty and the Beast (1946)
The 400 Blows (1959)
Amelie (2001)
The Story of Adele H (1975)
Orpheus (1950)
Stolen Kisses (1968)
Les Vampires (1915)
Les Diabolique (1955)
La Grand Illusion (1937)
Belle de Jour (1967)
Passion of Joan of Arc (1928)

Jules and Jim (1962)
The Triplettes of Belleville (2003)
Last Year in Marienbad (1961)
Port of Shadows (1938)
Wages of Fear (1953)
Pepe le Moko (1937)
Au Hasard Balthazar (1966)
Elevator to the Gallows (1958)

Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1964)
The Bride wore Black (1968)
Mr. Hulot’s Holiday (1953)
Pierrot le Fou (1965)
Band of Outsiders (1964)
Breathless (1960)
Contempt (1963)
My Life to Live (1962)
Fahrenheit 451 (1966)
2 English Girls (1971)

Last Metro (1980)
Day for Night (1973)
Alphaville (1965)
Un Coeus en Hiver (1992)
La Reine Margot (1994)
Plein Soleil (1960)
Pickpocket (1959)
Lady Chatterley (2006)
Le Samourai (1967)
La Vie En Rose (2007)
Brotherhood of the Wolf (2001)
Three Colours: Blue (1993)
Cache (2005)
Les Enfants du Paradis (1945)
Rififi (1955)
Le Regle du Jeu (1939)
La Haine (1995)
The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (2007)
Jean de Florette/Manon de Sources (1986)
A Prophet (2009)
Playtime (1967)

And painters! I can’t forget the French painters. I've only taken one post-modern art history course in my life and despised almost every minute of it. That's a story for another day but the point is that I fell in love with art.

Jean-Baptiste Louis Gros
Jean Baptiste-Camille carot
Alexandre Gabriel Decamp
Theordore Rousseau
Jean-Francois Millet
William-Adolphe Bouguereau
Camille Pissarro
Edouard Manet
Edgar Degas
Paul Cezanne

Claude Monet
Pierre-Auguste Renoir
Gustave Caillebotte
Paul Gaugin
Edmond Marie Petitjean
Georges Seurat
Achille Zo
Paul Signac
Jean-Honore Fragonard
Elisabeth Vigee-Lebrun

If you've ever been to France or have any suggestions I would love to hear your thoughts. I'm also planning on starting French lessons in the fall. I worry that I might get French overload and get absolutely sick of the place before I even get there but the point is that this is supposed to be a multi year project. I'm giving myself lots of time to do this.


teflonjedi said...

I've been to France several times, as you may recall. I can pass along old planning maps and itineraries and photos if you like. I do recommend you consider adding Marseille (and Chateau d'If), Strasbourg, Lyon, Arles, Carcassonne, and Avignon to your list...but of course leaving some destinations aside for a second trip later is also a cool way to go.

I am thinking that I will also be in France that year, with wife and little girl, should all go well.

theduckthief said...

That would be awesome! I will definitely add your suggestions to my list.

Very cool that you'll be in France at the same time.

teflonjedi said...

OK, drop me a line at my email address at gmail...I think it's easy to figure out what that email address is? I tried to send you an email, but your email address is not so obvious. :)

meera said...

I want visit Great White North. Taj Mahal Trip

Unknown said...

Also we passed many places with historical plaques which went un-recognized. It was walk-walk-walk-stop - let me tell you 3 stories, walk-walk-walk-stop at spot for 2 more stories, and that was it for 5 stops. France Travel Guide

RBGracey said...

Will be tavelig there as well. If you have never been to France before I highly recommend the eastern border. Colmar, Strasburg, Route d'Vin etc. Beautiful area. Also Neuf Brisach a really neat town within a fort. Have you found a lace to ensure tickets to the official ceremonies yet? Would be interested in discussing.

teflonjedi said...

Hey - so did you end up going to France?

theduckthief said...

As with many things life happens when you're making other plans. No I did not get to France in 2017. I still plan to go but France is on hold for the moment. Thanks for asking!

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