Friday, April 9, 2010

Parc San Marino

Virginia Jones has two (count 'em, two) daily photo blogs: Birmingham, Alabama Daily Photo, where she posts explorations of her home town, and Paris Through My Lens, where she posts her photographic visions of Paris, a town she and I have both dreamed of living in.

I think Virginia and I both love our home towns or we wouldn't blog about them every day. But we like to dream about Paris. I've never met anyone who's been there who didn't yearn to go back, even if they've been there many times.

Virginia's been there many more times than I have, and she's taken lots of pictures. Her photo of the gate at Paris' Parc Monceau inspired me to post a picture of this often-overlooked gate at the Huntington Library and Gardens in San Marino. Karin Bugge also posted a photo of this gate in one of my favorite Altadena Hiker posts. All three of us managed to photograph our gates under moody skies. Maybe we're all daydreamers.

My vision of living in Paris involves exploring the ancient streets, gardens and history until I've discovered every inch of the city. This fantasy includes having unlimited funds despite not having a job. I imagine one reason Paris seems so dreamy to those of us who've visited as tourists is precisely because we're on vacation and we're allowing ourselves the leisure to explore.

I'm lucky: blogging about Pasadena gives me not only the opportunity but the motivation to explore Pasadena, and to find hidden treasures like this gate. Next time you're at the Huntington, seek it out.


Shell Sherree said...

I'm wolf-whistling this one, Petrea, just as I did at Virginia's place. Very gorgeous! And a lovely reminder to me to continue to look at my own city with fresh eyes, much as I love the daydreams.

Virginia said...

Oh you are right, this looks just like my Parc Monceau gate! I saw it on your FB and thought for a minute it was my blog! :) Merci for the nod mon amie. Maybe we will see this lovely gate together soon!!!

Lori Lynn said...

I dream to go back to Paris too. It's is fun to find things that remind us of Paris in our home towns.
Gorgeous gate!

altadenahiker said...

As an added bit of trivia, Huntington acquired the gates from Beddington Park, Surrey, where they had been in service since 1714. I believe they were originally of Italian design.

My gost, P. You certainly got your money's worth on that tour.

Petrea said...

I'm laughing at Karin's (Altadena Hiker's) comment. I certainly got my money's worth on that tour. Karin took me through the private parts of the Huntington, and showed me places I hadn't been before in parts that aren't private. This gate is in a public but not heavily traveled part.

I'll take that wolf-whistle, Shell, and share it with the Hiker.

Now you know why Karin and I said what we did on your blog, Virginia. Your shot reminded us of "our" gate. I look forward to showing this to you.

Lori Lynn, I'll bet you know Paris well. I was there as a teenager and then again a few years ago, unfortunately before I took up the camera in earnest.

Thanks for the "trivia," Karin, though I think of it more as interesting historical fact. I love that. Can't believe you remember the date. Can't believe Beddington Park let them go.

Katie said...

These are lovely gates indeed. Why am I not surprised they are at the Huntington. (Ha, just noticed your Parc San Marino -- very clever.) I don't know how Virginia manages two blogs, but she does so amazingly well. And of course I'm thrilled that she started her Paris blog. Although I'm bummed for you that a trip to Paris isn't forthcoming, at least you're continuing to "explore the [not quite] ancient streets, gardens and history of Pasadena" and sharing your adventures with us!

Shanna said...

Beautiful! Such a treasure, and I love knowing the histoty of the gate.

Rosie said...

See, the way you feel about Paris is how I feel about Pasadena (and LA in general, too). We all have our happy places, thank God.

Bellis said...

When I first saw these gates after a tip-off from Karin, there was a magnificent bird on top. I thought it was part of the wonderful Italian caftwork .....until it moved and turned out to be a red-tailed hawk.
Beddington Park, I've just found out, is close to where I'm staying in London this week, so I may go to see it. The loss of the gates will probably be painful to see. The family who owned the house hit hard times in 1869, so perhaps Huntington found the gates in an architectural salvage store?

Anonymous said...

P: I suggest you should explore the Beddington Park when you have the chance, and before it’s too late.
You know, London will never last forever.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, I meant B!

Petrea said...

The Wikipedia article.

Images of Beddington Park.

pasadenapio said...

The Huntington is filled with such wondrous treasures, inside and out.

Bellis said...

Great links! It has lots of history, a must-visit sort of place. If you go to the link below and look at the page for Carew Manor, then look at the photos at the bottom of that page, I wonder if the gates come from the gateway shown there?

Petrea said...

I love the Huntington, Ann. It's our little piece of Europe. Well--not so little. One can continue to return and find more and more. I never tire of it.

I enjoyed your link too, Bellis. That could be the gate. The place looks so grand, it could have many gates. Who knows? Huntington toured Europe buying beautiful things, and may have bought them directly from the family.