Chandelier laden with branches, Le Grillon Voyageur Origines, 27, rue de l'Ancien Hopital, Sezanne, France.
It began with a (dried hortensia) bouquet,
a child's antique sleigh,
heavy drop crystals that swayed
and many gorgeous objects displayed.
But when it came time to pay
much to Tara's dismay,
it was Lara who won the day.
Yes, it's true. On a special sale Saturday at Le Grillon Voyageur Origines in Champagne country, I wanted to buy the sleigh and the crystal chandelier, above. But practically everything I saw and wanted to take home had the name "Lara" written on the price tag. While I was taking my time shooting photos and changing lenses, Lara was two steps ahead of me, snapping up everything I coveted, with one exception. As soon as we'd walked in the door, my friend Gabrielle spotted a 19th-century zinc weathervane, with a cross on top. She told me to grab it and ask the owner to hold it while I shopped; otherwise someone else would claim it. I'm sure the only reason Lara didn't buy it is because it escaped her notice in its spot next to a dimly-lit fireplace.
Later when standing in line to pay, I saw a basket containing a group of pearl-handled silver fruit knives. I was handing them to the cashier, when she said "Sorry, those are for Lara." "Lara!" I exclaimed. "Who is this woman? She's bought everything I wanted! Can't you just change the "L" to a "T?" At which point Lara stepped out of the background and apologised. We had a good laugh about how we not only have similar names, but apparently the exact same taste! And she has red hair.
Check back later for more photos from Le Grillon Voyageur Origines, as well as from the secret garden in Sezanne.
I spent Monday afternoon shooting more than 200 photos of the whimsical Christmas vitrines in Paris's big department stores. Will post some images beginning the day after Thanksgiving.