My life inside an impressionist painting (updated Sept. 28)

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Reflections from my Parisian village….

Had a hard time reentering the Parisphere this year, so made a list of places to reconnect with the soul of France. First stop: le Musée de l’Orangerie to see Monet’s Waterlilies:

http://www.musee-orangerie.fr/fr/article/visite-virtuelle-des-nympheas

Yes, of course you can take the virtual tour via the link above and you can go there on a crowded weekend, walk through the oval rooms filming with your smartphone, and check it off your list of tourist attractions to “do” in Paris. That’s about how I did it the first time. Then I accompanied US friends to Monet’s home and gardens in Giverny (about two hours northwest) and crossed that off my list, too, but something kept pulling me back. I researched the best time to go to avoid the tour buses and found myself spending hours sitting by the lily pond under the willow branches, immersed in peace and beauty. Then I returned to see the waterlilies at the Orangerie, again and again, weekdays at lunch time, when it’s almost empty, sliding around the oval benches in the soft natural light, facing the panels with soft eyes until the colors imprinted on my retina and I could almost slip between the layers of flowers, water, clouds, and sky. I wanted only the sensual elemental experience, not an intellectual art-snob number, so I deliberately ignored all documentation.

This time I went on a Thursday midday, was almost alone in the twin spaces and finally saw that the exhibit is not a rendering of Giverny’s pond, but more freely interpreted to create loops of time, light, and overlapping worlds. Later I wandered into the deserted audiovisual room downstairs and had the film about how Monet created this place all to myself.  There is much more to say, in the coming days,  about how my vision has been transformed by Monet’s spirit, how I’m seeing my cityscape literally in a different light.

To be continued….. xxxxx Aliss

Forest Bathing (2) (US style)

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Time with the trees, from the Catskills to the Taconic Range….

In an earlier post on February 22, from the Fontainebleau Forest south of Paris, I

“Recalled running across a new term: ‘forest bathing,’ translated from Japanese and Korean, meaning to spend relaxing time in the woods. (French version: sylvothérapie)

Highly recommended reading, how trees secrete natural antibiotics, essential oils, and other substances that heal infections, comparison of number of germs found in cities (lots) and in forests (none), beneficial effect on stress symptoms such as blood pressure…etc.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/forest_bathing

https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sylvothérapie

Disturbing to think that seeing the information presented scientifically is more persuasive than just being there. Are we so removed from our senses that we can only take them seriously when they are expressed in statistics? Why not trust what we feel when we’re there?”

Above picture taken at the top of Mount Greylock in western Massachusetts, on the Appalachian and Mohawk trails, overlooking 4 states. Very moving and uplifting because the mountain that inspired Thoreau, Hawthorne, and Melville  was once completely devastated by logging and charcoaling. Only a stand of old growth red spruce were spared due to their inaccessible location. In 1885 a group of local businessmen bought up 400 acres to create a conservancy and eventually turned it over to the State. Since then the preserve has grown to more than 12,500 acres and the forest has healed itself.

For an enlightening look at how trees communicate and support each other through living underground networks, “The Wood Wide Web,” featuring Merlin Sheldrake:

http://www.newyorker.com/tech/elements/the-secrets-of-the-wood-wide-web

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Learning from the trees…. To be continued xxxxx Aliss

 

A far far greener place…

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Teleported to another continent, another latitude, another time zone, another reality…

Echoing: “I want to know exactly what color green it was,” said Sylvia.

“The modern English word green comes from the Middle English and Anglo-Saxon word grene, from the same Germanic root as the words “grass” and “grow”.[1] It is the color of living grass and leaves[2][3] and as a result is the color most associated with springtime, growth and nature.[4] By far the largest contributor to green in nature is chlorophyll, the chemical by which plants photosynthesize and convert sunlight into chemical energy. Many creatures have adapted to their green environments by taking on a green hue themselves as camouflage. Several minerals have a green color, including the emerald, which is colored green by its chromium content.”

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Green#In_culture

Artichoke, asparagus, avocado, chartreuse, dark green, fern green, forest green, Hooker’s green, jungle green, laurel green, light green, mantis, moss green, myrtle green, mint green, pine green, sap green, shamrock green (Irish green), tea green, teal, olive,  crayola green, pantone green, army green, bottle green, bright green, Brunswick green, Castleton green, celadon, emerald, feldgrau, yellow-green, harlequin, hunter green, India green, Islamic green, jade, kelly green, malachite, midnight green, neon green, office green, Pakistan green, Paris green, Persian green, rifle green, Russian green, screamin’ green, sea green…

Viridian, parakeet, pistachio, lime, pear, pickle, crocodile, sage, seaweed, basil, juniper, clover, broccoli, eel, caterpillar, grasshopper, dollar bill, lettuce, cactus, parrot, lawn, lizard, pea….

to be continued xxxx Aliss