BitterSweet

An Obsession with All Things Handmade and Home-Cooked

Skeletal Mosaic

11 Comments

No, these are not plastic replicas and no, this is not stock photography- These pictures come straight from my dad, who was in France last week and decided to pay a visit to the catacombs. Follow the link to get the full story, since I feel like just another shocked and awed foreigner who can’t even begin to understand it. So in honor of Halloween, check out this true ghost tale, and I hope you feel just a little bit less scared on the streets tonight amongst the fake facades of skeletons!

Happy Halloween, everyone!

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Author: Hannah Kaminsky

Author of My Sweet Vegan, Vegan Desserts, Vegan a la Mode, and Easy as Vegan Pie.

11 thoughts on “Skeletal Mosaic

  1. what an incredible opportunity (especially to learn some history and to take amazing photographs) for your father!! such captivating photos in honor of Halloween!!

    Happy Halloween, Hannah!! Be sure to check your email today :0)

  2. That’s amazing! Thanks for sharing the photos and link.

    Happy Halloween!

  3. Very spooky. I sent an email to the tea place. If I ever get an answer, I’ll forward.

  4. I saw the catacombs on the tv show Cities of the Underworld. I didn’t know that they actually allow people to tour them. Absolutely amazing!

  5. Wow – those are awesome pictures. I see where you get your photography talent from! How cool that he got to go see the catacombs in person and creepy too! Great post!

  6. Wow – that has further fuelled my desire to visit Paris!

  7. What a perfect halloween post. I teach the Catacombs in my classes, but have never actually seen them in person. Awesome.

  8. My husband and I went to the Catacombs last year when we were in France and it is really unbelievable!

  9. Catacombs of Paris
    This is a personal experience I would like to share with you. Tonight I just came across this picture on your blog and recognised it instantly. I did not see any words with the picture and had to click on the link to find out, but I was absolutely right. Although this image could have been taken from anywhere in the world, I was still able to recognise it perfectly as the spooky tombs I had visited as a little girl. I had seen this same thing in Paris on a school trip (!!! what the?), in 1983 when I was just 6 years old, and was quite frightened! Why 6 year olds were taken on this trip, I do not know, but it’s something I’ll never forget!

    I have a memory of walking with other school children through some streets holding hands in a line of twos. Not speaking French that well at the time, I had NO clue about where we were going or what I was about to see. After waiting we entered a tunnel going down a metal spiral staircase. It was pitch black darkness as we went down and I was quite scared. At the bottom of the stairs we gathered and stood in a large dark chamber with a very high ceiling. Our guide held a torch and there were a few small fluoro lights running along on the tunnel’s low ceiling, but it was still exceptionally dark. We moved out of the first chamber and travelled through the tunnels. Sounds changed as we were underground. It was more quiet, like being in a cupboard, and there was a dull smell. We walked for some time through the rock-cut tunnels. I remember looking up at the mini-fluoro lights on the ceiling attached upon jagged rock. I felt very uneasy, especially about being in the dark and not having any family with me.

    Then there it was. Skulls. Everywhere. Rows and rows of old, dead, scary skulls. They sat upon rows and rows of stacked thigh bones. I didn’t like being there at all and I really wished I had my Dad to cling onto at that time. The teachers and guides spoke about it in French amongst themselves and I didn’t understand a word. But I knew perfectly well that I was standing underground in a chamber filled with dead people. Because I observed that hundreds and hundreds of skulls were placed together, I believed that they must have died all at once, and so I imagined that a terrible thing must have happened to all these people. I still believed that to this day, until I read about what this all was tonight. Only now do I know.

    My strongest memory is taking a moment for myself, while the people were talking and standing around, to get very close to the skulls. I positioned my face right infront of one of them, and looked into it’s black hollow eyes. For an instance of a moment I felt a brief connection with the skull. And then returned to the focus that it was dead. Then I felt a wash over me of fear and felt myself tremble a little as I backed away to be closer to the group I was with. I do not remember talking about this experience with my parents when I got home. I wonder if they did. This is a place I won’t be taking my children to see!

    I found the picture here and then explored the link to learn about what it all was.

    Renata.

  10. Oh yeah, BTW -I’m from Australia and lived for a year in Paris with my Dad and step Mum when I was 6.

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