Wednesday, April 29, 2009

April in Paris - Don't Forget Your Scarf!

We’re back from Italy and Paris is spectacular. It always is in April. Trees are full, flowers are in bloom, and flowering bushes are bursting with color. No wonder the 1932 song, April in Paris, by Vernon Duke and E. Y. “Yip” Harburg continues to resonate today with music lovers and lovers of Paris, alike:

April in Paris, chestnuts in blossom,
Holiday tables under the trees.

April in Paris, this is a feeling,
No one can ever reprise.
I never knew the charm of spring,
Never met it face to face.
I never knew my heart could sing,
Never missed a warm embrace.
‘Til April in Paris.
Whom can I run to?
What have you done to my heart?

Honestly, though, the weather in Paris in April can be quite changeable. Perhaps that’s part of the charm. On any one April day, it’s possible to experience all four seasons. So, when visiting Paris in April, remember to have with you the following items, at all times:

A portable, collapsible umbrella for when it showers;

A light jacket to guard against the chill, but one that can go easily into a bag or tie around the waist with the sun comes out;

Sunglasses, for when the sun really shines;

The all-important Parisian écharpe (spring scarf) for when the sun is in and out and it’s too warm for your jacket but still a bit nippy for a shirt alone.

You thought les Parisiennes were just being fashionable with their scarves! Mais, non! The écharpe is a valuable, and very practical, part of our April wardrobe here in Paris. And it looks good!

Wait to buy your ubiquitous Parisian scarf first thing on arrival, this way les dames can show you the myriad ways to tie it. It will make for a much-loved souvenir when you return home.

Painting of Paris in springtime by Camille Pissarro (1830-1903), courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.
Painting of Paris Chestnut trees by Van Gogh (1853-1890), courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

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