4 May A Day Full of Spirits
This morning my friend Shoesy and I went around my neihgbourhood, also so that Shoesy could see my studio in Rue Caulaincourt.
Before setting out for walking together in the afternoon we went by my local winebar Chez Vous to have a bowl of the most delicious mushroom soup. My, it was good !
And I had a nice glass (or two) of Pécharmant, a very strong, full-bodied redwine from Bergérac, which they serve at Chez Vous.
I took my friend for a walk in the 13th arrondissement, which led us past the temple for the sect of Antoinism.
The movement was born in Belgium in 1910, by Louis Antoine, who practiced laying-on of hands. It's a spiritist variety of Christianity, believing among other things in moral progression by reincarnation. You are welcome to study the yellow link above.
The disciples worship the founder whom they call "The Father", as being no less second to an incarnation of Jesus - and after the death of "The Father" also his wife as being "The Mother".
This small sect is represented in Belgium, France and Monaco.
Now I may not be good at doing a lot of exploring in the company of other people, but being curious as a rat......
Having read about - and walked by - this temple several times, of course I wanted to go in. C'mon, Shoesy !
Oooops ! We had hardly grabbed the doorhandle before we were intercepted and greeted with blessings by an old lady disciple, clad in an oldfashioned black dress going all the way to the floor - and with veil like in the photo.
This photo is taken from an Antoiniste website, so it's fully authentic. The disciples always dress in black.
I asked the lady if we could visit the church/temple. Seulement pour la prière, only for praying.
OK...... I didn't dare translate that to my Jewish friend Shoesy, who wasn't too happy about the situation already ! We had to leave our bags (I think ?) with the old lady and she told us in the most urgent whisper, that we were not allowed to speak in the temple room. Then she handed us each a pamphlet and ushed us in.
There were perhaps 8-9 disciples praying in the temple, so we tiptoed into the rear pew, trying to be quiet at little mice.
No ! I did NOT take a picture - this is found only by long and hard Googling. It shows the temple we visited, as it looks
(Rue Wurtz, 75013 Paris).
You see the Creed of the Antoiniste Cult (or doctrine, if you like) in the photo above. It is written in all their temples and goes like this:
One single remedy for healing humanity: Faith.
It's Faith that gives birth to Love.
The Love which lets us see God himself within our enemies.
Not loving one’s enemies, that is like not loving God,
because it's the Love we have for our enemies
that makes us worthy of serving Him.
That is the only Love which makes us truly love,
because it is pure and truthful.
What a surprisingly beautiful and profound doctrine - surprising because from Googling the Antoiniste websites, I can tell you: this is one batshit crazy sect.
And why did that stupid old woman insist on calling me "Sir"
all the time ? I mean: I may not be all that petite and pretty
Am I being rude ?
For anyone searching for truth, love, forgiveness, God - longing for spiritual guidance and peace, I feel nothing but deep respect and a warmth of heart.
It's The Systems I can't take. Yuk !
Sometimes I think of going to church - or simply listening to a Sunday service on the radio. Now I could do with some moral edification, right ?
But after 5 minutes of hearing a longfaced vicar pouring water out of his ears, I've had it ! That just makes my toes curl and my hair stand on end.
After around 7 minutes of being quiet as little mice, we tiptoed out again and thanked the kind Soeur. I wonder what she thought of us ?
Anyways. The weather was not too beautiful, but at least dry - so we walked down to Cité Floral at the south end of the 13th arrondissement.
If you want to see some lovely pictures from this little "floral" paradise, you can take a look at this Travel Diary from my previous visit on 7 May 2009.
Which date actually happens to be, I see now, Shoesy's birthday ! Coincidence ? Think not.
Taking the bus back to town, where we parted to go each to our hotel/studio to rest, freshen up and change clothes, as we were going dining at Joséphine Chez Dumonet in the evening.
Madame studying the menu !
Jean-Christian Dumonet, the darling chef-patron, was in a particularly festive mood, because he brought us a plate of complimentary canapés and glasses of a new white wine, he had taken home.
Now THIS is why I like dining with my friend Shoesy:
Stuffed morels of which the stuffing consisted of foie gras, ham, onions and port wine. And a luscious sauce. It was very rich, almost too rich.
Asparagus with Sauce Mousseline (it's like a hollandaise, slight taste of lemon, made silky with whipped cream)
More glasses of wine ! >hic<
Millefeuille de pigeon et ses cuisses confites.
Layers of pigeon breast and potatoes - legs on the side. I have wanted to try this dish for some time at J.C.D. - so now was the time to do it. Hmmmm...... the breast came in very red, too red for me to eat it. So it had to go back to be killed properly.
The legs were VERY good. And the sauce was to die for.
But I am no sophisticated eater: I simply can't get myself to like eating birds that are served red.
Confit de Canard Pommes Landaises
Green leaves on the side, to make it look pretty. Pommes landaises means that the thick disks of potatoes are fried in duck fat.
Shoesy, I am not saying you stuffed yourself - but ............
Whereas I, la pauvre Soeur, who only had those measly, tiny pigeon bones ....... was entitled to a dessert.
The glorious Grand Marnier Soufflé - with a petit shot of G.M. on the side, getting filled up more than once, by the rascal NoNo as far as I remember.
At this time I was in no condition to conjugate irregular verbs, in French or any other language - nor perform a flawless Olympics standard somersault.
Hey, c'mon guys, wipe that nasty snigger off of your face !
Somebody had to drink all those free glasses ! It would have been very impolite, not to mention downright heartless, not to ! And we the Soeurs love our fellow humans ! Including Parisian bistrot chef-patrons.
But as it often goes in fairytales:
The Poor Goodhearted Soeurs watch their desserts get gobbled up by cruel, insensitive Ice Queens !
It was a warm, lovely, sparkling evening - as they can be at Joséphine Chez Dumonet.
Time to go home, have a bottle of water and a handful of painkillers for the Poor Soeur's Head !
Bonsoir, mes petits amis.