Travel: The Madonna

Lastly, one cannot emerge from the gorgeous city of Paris without a visit to the Louvre, the infamous resting place of Leonardo Da Vinci’s mysterious Mona Lisa.

The Mona Lisa.

The style in which he painted her mouth is beguiling; it is this ambiguity that has continued to fascinate art historians to this day. Furthermore, despite widespread speculation as to the namesake of the individual in the picture, if Da Vinci painted his mother, or if he used his own likeness as a model.

Don’t discount the other amazing works of art housed in this museum though; a large and diverse collection of other ethnic arts is available to drown your eyes in! We detoured from the ‘Madonna’ to revel in the artistry of other cultures. I’ve included just a glimpse of what we covered.

Islamic Art

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Egyptian Art: A Mummy!

And with that, I bid Au Revoir to Paris. My mother’s vacation was at an end and she returned home to continue with her job. On the other hand, I continued my journey through Europe by taking a  ‘sleeper’ train for the first time to visit a good friend in Hamburg, Germany!

It was fascinating learning about the cultures of everyone sharing the sleeper cabin with me; it ended up being a minor United Nations of sorts, with the countries of Chechnya, Russia, Finland, Afghanistan, and Romania being present. Unfortunately, the Chechnyan did not speak English and was unable to partake in our discourse.

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Topics of conversation ranged from Global Warming, to the International Economy, and then reaching home for everyone as we started to discuss the plagues of unemployment, government corruption, and the struggles of the lower classes in our respective countries. It was a truly educational experience that served to broaden my mind on the opinions of others with respect to US foreign policy, and the challenges of politics within the borders of nations trying to find their footholds under more democratic oriented leadership.

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