Category Archives: Travel

Scavenger Hunt : A Stitch in Time

Paris has many stories to tell. Some are embraced as the bright light of the city’s history, others are relegated to the passage of time.

This is one of those stories…


Staring Point :

At the point where ‘ile aux Juifs’ and ‘ile du Patriarche’ meet, sits a garden that commemorates a time long gone. At the entrance to the Garden a plague describes the dark events that happened here.

Long, long ago on a somber March day, two people are burnt at the stake for their actions. One of them was the head honcho of a multi-national conglomerate that became more powerful than the Pope; richer than most kings of the time; and a banking system, with large reserves, that financed many kings of France.

For this imperial power, he paid a price. He was captured, stripped of his title and power, and ultimately held captive in a prison tower. The name of his conglomerate tells you, not only what he did, but the site that serves as your second location.

Second Point :

The tower in which he was held captive stands no more.

But the void space of its existence still sits.

This place, a rectangular oddly enough called a ‘square’ is a ‘space’ where now-a-days Parisians enjoy the sun within the city.

The buildings that now enclose it are beautiful examples of Paris’ “Belle Epoque” gone by. But one wondrous example stands out even more. With its Morning Glory, she fills the place with a majestic air.

If you raise your face towards the sky, let the morning light shine on your back and look closely, you will find your way to the corner where majestic Dawn spends her time.

You will find her waiting…

She waits for the sunrise, at which time Dawn raises her veil towards the heavens. Her days are spent running away from the Twilight at her feet. Her nights are spent anticipating the days to come. She is caught in a strife between light & dark. When she is about to lose hope, the Guardian of the winds blows aside the darkness to reveal the Awesome splendor from heaven.

Descending from a cloud comes the Virgin & Child with the rays of light serving as a halo of their glory. Looking down from the all-encompassing Heaven, God sits at the end of the rainbow shining down his light of approval.

In all their majesty, the holy ones come to lift Dawn’s hope & reveal to her that the time has come…

What device was revealed to Dawn?

Third Point :

Now that you found the device, I want you to know that there are over 100 of these in Paris. So how can you pinpoint where the next device is located? Well here you will find Cronus of course. But also a clothed lady standing next to him holding a sword & a scale.

What she is doing there has something to do with this saying at her feet:
Hour Fugitive - Instantly Right

Obviously, she is not blindfolded. So she should be able to read it in Latin to know that it states.

Maybe that explains why it’s called “Judgment Day.”

Find where this device is located & this building tells you what happens here. It also gives you a clue & moves us to the next point.

Forth Point :

So now I bring you full circle. here you have reached the building where this king was surrounded by advisers around his Beds of Justice.

He rebuilt the palace & in his court, he was called “The Fair” – but not because of his ethics…

He expelled all Jews from France, pilfering all their belonging. He had a constant power struggle with the Roman papacy. He was deeply in debt to the multi-national conglomerate (mentioned in the first point) therefore, leading to his destruction of them! He killed its leaders (that you saw in the first point), disbanded all its members & stole all their money & gold.

Having plundered all that was the conglomerate’s keep, he defrauded the people…

He was pretty nasty, so there aren’t too many statues of this king in Paris. There was one of him as a knight in armor on a horse – but the people didn’t think it was a correct likelihood & destroyed it in 1772.

The only one still around shows him laying down on the job. He can no longer listen to the masses. To find him signals the end of his story & the story that ended the world’s first superpower.

Who is this king & where is his statue located and what organization did he destroy?

Enjoy the journey!

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Scavenger Hunt : The Invinsible Line

Paris is a beautiful & magnificent city. Full of love & light to shed on the world.

Many visitors walk around with their gaze up on the Eiffel Tower or on the grand architectural detailing on buildings that makes this city so beautiful. But few look at the details that are directly under their feet.

Directly under their feet is an invisible monument that marks an invisible line that crosses all of Paris & defined the starting point for the whole world!

I am talking about The Paris Meridian Line (or as Dan Brown liked to call it – The Rose Line). This line was the Prime Meridian or Zero Meridian, that the world used as the datum for all measurements of longitude. It was established in 1667 and revised/extended several times, most famously by François Arago (1786-1853).

Unfortunately, in 1884 it lost out to the Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) as the universal starting point for the Prime Meridian that still stands today. The French, being a stubborn bunch abstained from that directive and continued to use the Paris meridian until 1911.

This imaginary line crosses North/South through parks, city streets, private properties and even has some famous monuments sitting on it & aligned with it.

Now that line is gone & almost forgotten – save – for the artistic tribute to Arago by Dutch artist, Jan Dibbets. In 1994/95 he recreated the line by placing 135 bronze medallions and marking small pieces of the line.

This Arago Line is most noticeable, in the only remnant (within Paris) still existing today. At the Paris Observatory you can see an actual piece of the line created in the paving pattern.

But throughout Paris, the artist placed the medallions – each 12cm [4.7″] in diameter, inlaid into the ground along a 9.2km [5.7 mile] stretch of the Paris Meridian Line.

The Medallions have the word “Arago’ & a letter ‘N’ & ‘S’ to represent North & South directions. A newer version – La Meridienne Verde Medalions – fills in where previous medallions were missing.

These are your guides & finding as many as you can may be difficult but will give you a new – out of the ordinary – adventure in Paris.

The Hunt Is On!

Find the 5 southern-most markers (within Paris) and what monuments/buildings are they close to.

Some are difficult to find, others are missing with a hint of their existence. The fun is in the searching while finding them is an added reward.

To start you off, these are the locations of some of the medallion markers within the Louvre.

  • In the Louvre (Richelieu Wing), 18th – 19th c. French Sculpture area, in the passage between the 5th – 18th c. and the 18th – 19th c. areas
  • In the Louvre (Richelieu Wing), 18th – 19th c. French Sculpture area, on ‘mezanine-level’ walkway on the south side of Cour Puget
  • In the Louvre (Richelieu Wing), 18th – 19th c. French Sculpture area, between the escalators, at the top
  • At the Louvre (Napoleon Court), east of the pyramid.
  • At the Louvre (Napoleon Court), east of the pyramid.
  • At the Louvre (Napoleon Court), east of the pyramid.(missing just void)
  • At the Louvre (Napoleon Court), east of the pyramid.
  • At the Louvre (Napoleon Court), east of the pyramid.
  • In the Louvre (Denon Wing), Etruscan and Roman Antiquities area, on the main ground floor stairs
  • In the Louvre (Denon Wing), Etruscan and Roman Antiquities area, just inside the door to Room 31
  • In the Louvre (Denon Wing), Etruscan and Roman Antiquities area, Room 31
  • In the Louvre (Denon Wing), Etruscan and Roman Antiquities area, Room 21

Connect the dots & it will point your way.

Bonus Round :

Find the piece of the line (not medallion) that Dan Brown made famous as ‘The Rose Line’ (in his “Da Vinci Code” Novel). Well, its not really the real Paris Meridian (off by 100ft), but it serves an equally as big – not the purpose Dan Brown said – but similar to the Paris Meridian.

What purpose does it serve?

HINT : This line involves (2) Rose windows, an obelisk & a medallion. Each serves a purpose for the line, but they seem out of character inside the church where Victor Hugo was married.

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Venice in a Day

The beauty of Venice is breathtaking. Of the cities I’ve visited, Venice is my 2nd most favorite city only after Oia, Santorini.

Oia has the beautiful sunsets & the romance of the blue & white clif-hanging building. It is a village for a romantic getaway. Quiet & serine and what dreams of made of.

Venice on the other-hand has the beauty of a city I can live in day-to-day. It has the social & cultural aspect that I like in a city. It is a city of large & small scale charm all wrapped up in to one. Architecturally, it can feed my soul for the rest of my life & culturally I can feed off its beauty.

Here is a video, for your enjoyment, of the activity & the beauty of this magical city.

Venice in a Day from Joerg Niggli on Vimeo.

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