France: Day 3, Chartres

It’s been a great pace so far. No plans, no schedule, no goals, no stress. I didn’t want to cram a bunch of activities on this trip; I’d much rather take it easy and enjoy myself, so I can absorb as much of the culture as possible.

People would ask me if I was excited to come here, and I couldn’t say that I was, probably because there wasn’t anything specific I felt compelled to see. Sure, I’ll probably end up visiting some of the touristy, must-see sites in Paris, but more importantly, I want to live the life, to be a local for a while.

girl buying bread

The definitive image of France: a young girl dressed smartly in chapeau and tights waves to the baker, who comes from around the counter to hold the door for her as she leaves the store. Of uncorrupted innocence, simple rituals, and fresh bread.


Entertaining. When you don’t know how many people are going to show up, you put out a lot of teacups.

corner building


Crafts store

Atelier Lisouire, a crafts store that covers almost any craft you can think of, from scrapbooking to fine art to calligraphy. Un étage pour les loisirs-créatifs, la jonglerie et les cerf-volants de sport.

cutting baguette

Stale baguettes are cut into cubes and used for salads or soups.

Misun, Emmanuelle, and Frederic


bad parking

Nice parking, jerkstore.

family on street

A family moseys down a street. The market in Chartres is almost dead on Sundays until around noon, and it’s the perfect time to go out without having to deal with the crush of people and cars.

feet on stones

The narrow roads are often a patchwork of different materials, and sometimes even different stones.

flower market

Even on a cold and rainy day, the flower market is thriving.

Frederic and Misun walking


house truffles

House truffles.

La Vieille Maison

La Vieille Maison, a restaurant in a 14th century house. Seen at the end of the alley is the Chartres Cathedral.

La Vieille Maison menu

Menu for La Vielle Maison.

Akio on the couch


Europe 2010 travel diaries


  1. Hey Jeff

    I can’t remember how I stumpled upon your blog, but I have been following it for a few months now. Really enjoy reading it or should I say view it, since what caught my eye back when I first encountered the blog, was your photography. I really like your style and they way you capture almost any moment in a state of statis. It is almost as if the world decided to stop and let you take a picture.

    Now I also have a small question! In the picture you have taken of the street with the cobblestones and your shoes. What kind of shoes are they? I really like them, but I probably will not be able to buy them in a store here in Denmark, so it will be a hunt on the internet to try to find then eventually.

    Warm regards,


    Copenhagen, Denmark

    • Thanks! I tend to be a poor photographer when it comes to static shots; I’m just not creative in that way. But I found a knack for capturing subtle moments when they’re happening…or maybe I’m just lucky, because it’s never something I can plan for.

      My shoes are Dr. Martens. They’re somewhat expensive, but extremely durable. I once wore a pair every day for about six years before the soles barely started to split. Since it’s such a big international brand, I’m sure you’ll have absolutely no problem finding them wherever you are (I bought this pair in Hong Kong).

  2. Thanks for the quick reply! I’m sure I will be able to find knowning they are Dr. Martens. I should have recognised that, since I have had quite a few pairs in years back.

    Enjoy your stay in France :)


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