Théâtre Laurette, Paris

Screen Shot 2020-01-20 at 17.28.52

So seldom, in my lifetime, have I come across my first name, that when I do, I take note.  I was very surprised to see this theatre in Paris.  I want to attend a program there!

Screen Shot 2020-01-20 at 17.36.37




I found this on the internet:


Notre envie de partager avec les artistes, compagnies, producteurs et toutes professions qui subliment autour du spectacle, est née d’une rencontre exceptionnelle.
Laurette est généreuse, attentive et amoureuse des autres.
C’est tout ce qu’elle nous a communiqué qui fait de cette salle de spectacle, un lieu charmant, intimiste et chaleureux.
C’est dans chacun de vos pas (spectateurs, comédiens, chanteurs, auteurs…) que l’on retrouve Laurette, notre Laurette,
et dans chacun de vos applaudissements que l’on retrouve son sourire.
Merci à tous ceux qui nous aide à exister chaque jour.

En hommage à Laurette, notre amie passionnée de théâtre, cinéma et elle-même actrice…
In English:

Our desire to share with artists, companies, producers and all professions that sublimate around the show, was born from an exceptional meeting.
Laurette is generous, attentive and in love with others.
It’s all that she communicated to us that makes this performance hall a charming, intimate and warm place.
It is in each of your steps (spectators, actors, singers, authors …) that we find Laurette, our Laurette,
and in each of your applause that we find his smile.
Thank you to everyone who helps us exist every day.

In tribute to Laurette, our passionate friend of theater, cinema and herself an actr

The miracle of flight

One minute you’re over the Appenine mountains in Tuscany…



And the next minute (well, 12 hours later, counting connections) you are over the western USA. Where it’s winter. And it’s cold. And dry.



And kind of starkly beautiful.



Check out that weird shape in the earth below, covered with snow.  Alien symbols for UFOs?  When I was 13, I would have thought so.








To me, the patterns and colors are beautiful.


The crazy American foods I miss

I’m in the US for a brief visit. High on my list of things to do while here is to hit up the supermarket for some must-have staples I can’t find in Italy.

But, when I returned from the store, I had to laugh at my group of foods.  Only the brown sugar and the dried pintos (for the Mexican food I miss so much) will go back to Europe with me.  The other things will be gobbled up during my American visit.  Funny, right?  I adore the old-fashioned sour cream/onion soup mix dip from my childhood.  That on a great potato chip has got to be one of life’s greatest pleasures, at least to me!


I really like deviled ham (all these childhood flavors), but most of all I crave Welch’s grape juice.  It is a unique flavor in all of the world.  Trust me, I have sampled every grape juice I can find in Europe and none of them come close the the unique Welch’s juice.

Italians, in fact, think it is a great waste of the grape to make anything so simple as a juice when, with a little time and know-how, they can turn it into the miracle of wine!

There are some other things I will take back to Florence with me: dry yeast, vanilla extracts, otc meds like ibuprofen which is very expensive in Italy.  You can buy it in packages of 10s or 20s.  You get it only at a pharmacy and it isn’t otc.  You have to request it of the pharmacist.

I was amused to discover in London that while you can purchase meds like ibuprofen in the same way as we do in the US–that is, you can find it on a shelf in a bottle of 100 tablets or so–there is a limit as to how much you can purchase at one time.  The limit at the Boots Pharmacy I was in was 1 bottle of 100 tablets per visit.  Of course, with a little planning, you can get around that, but what a pain in the neck to stock up on a vacation.

All for now, I need to go drink some juice and have some chips and dip!

A true confession from a former, rabid art historian

Hi Janis, I’m disappointed we didn’t get a chance to meet up again before our trips to the US! I hope you are well again. I am happy to say I am almost well. The 2nd round of antibiotics and nebulizer did the trick.

I’ve been wanting to share a couple of things from my Paris trip that only you will understand! You know how we are always saying that “things aren’t like they used to be” in the art world in Italy. You can’t just pop in at the Medici Chapel and expect to find it open and empty like it would have been in the olden days! We are ancient!

And you know how we are always saying that we don’t like going to special exhibitions nowadays because you have to fight the crowds to get close to a painting. It is too much work and it ruins the experience.

So, in that vein, I have a couple of things:

First, I can spend an entire vacation without going into an art museum at all nowadays! I think that not only do I dislike the two items above, but I am just tired of art museums in general and my interests have evolved. I have to face the fact that I’m no longer a devoted student of art.

So, on one of our first days in Paris, staying well out of the center of the city and relying on the Metro, but the Metro was on strike…we decided to walk to the Pompidou Center. I haven’t been there in 30 years. My son has never been there. We had a lovely walk through a fascinating section of Paris and, when we arrived at the Pompidou, we joined a small group of people waiting to enter. We got inside, I looked around, and every fiber in my being said “leave!” There is all of Paris to experience and I don’t feel like getting lost in this big, modern building looking at art I really couldn’t care less about. My son was only too happy to leave. He was drug into so many art museums as a child that his right arm is longer than his left, or so we joke.

We were in Paris for 10 days and the one Metro line that you could count on working was the #1, which goes East to West, stopping at the Louvre. We rode that line almost every day and many a time we got off at the Louvre, the center of the city.

We walked by the pyramid almost daily, and even though the museum was always open, we decided not to go in and save our complete Louvre experience for the 17th, when we had Leonardo tickets.

So the days go by and we are planning to see the Louvre on the 17th. We depart Paris on the 19th.

We arrive at the Louvre about 11 a.m. on the 17th, even though our tickets were for 1 pm. I notice immediately that the usual line to enter the pyramid is not there and there is a pretty good sized group of people in the area, but it is helter scelter. I find a Louvre official and show him my Leonardo ticket on my phone. He scoffs. I’m confused. Then it becomes clear, on the 17th of January (my birthday and Michelle Obama’s too, btw!) the Louvre employees decided to join the strike. No one is getting into the museum!

I am in shock. This was one scenario I didn’t see coming. We planned our entire trip around this exhibition.

And yet, another part of me was just fine with this outcome. We gathered ourselves up and headed to the Left Bank where I treated us to a delicious birthday lunch at Les Deux Magots! It was perfect.

I hasten to add that during the 10 days I was in Paris I did attend 2 special art exhibitions: Toulouse Lautrec at the Grand Palais and Degas at the Opera at the Musee d’ Orsay. Both exhibitions were very crowded (in January for god’s sake!) and not enjoyable from that standpoint. I had been dreading the Leonardo show because I assumed it would be even more crowded.

So, what did I learn? I learned that I have made my last plan around a special art exhibition. Those days are officially over for me. Yes, I will always look at art. But, no more blockbusters unless I get a personal invitation to visit privately when the museum is closed to the public. And, while that used to happen in my life, that ain’t gonna happen again in this lifetime!

Only a fellow (sister?) art historian can understand the greatness of this tale!!

Ciao for now, sister, Lauretta