Thursday, June 10, 2010

Lyon Rambling

On Wednesday we piled into Megan and headed off to Lyon, the second biggest city in France. The GPS provides a great deal of confidence to our street negotiations and location of parking areas.

Lyon lies about 1 1/2 hours away in normal driving conditions (ie 130+ kmph on the tollways) and we arrived in good time for a solid Ramble. Parking right under the Hotel de Ville (town hall), we emerged into the centre of the city and headed for the 'Office de Tourisme' (guess what that is ...). Then straight to the Museum des Beaux Arts for look around and squizz at some of the beaux arts that were inevitably displayed there. Now I've seen some beaux arts before, but these beaux arts were REALLY beaux.

One section of the museum consisted of scraps of silk fabrics that were made YONKS ago when Lyon was the silk weaving capital of Christendom. There were ancient tapestries as well. To DIE for! Dear Jude was rooly taken by the display in the next section of the museum where 20th century costumes from operas and such were interspersed among 17th/18th century displays of furniture and other 'sorts of shit'. Dear Jude really loved this part of the museum. Dear Graeme caught up with the continuing tale of woe of his racehorse Dash on Over, who always starts slowly, then realizes there's a race on and charges home, only to be squeezed/bumped/interfered with and written up in the Steward's Report as to why he failed to make it to one of the places that doesn't pay out any money. The great thing is that Jude loved this museum AND THAT'S ALL THAT MATTERS!

Next we Rambled off to a wonderful abbey. Here found that a not-so-wonderful funeral was jus about to begin, so we weren't able to go in. So there is nothing more to report on it. So there!

Bateau Rambling next. Yes, that's right. A boat trip. It was included in our tourist pass/museum entry deal we picked up at the Office de Tourism. We hopped on board with all the oldies and set off. Down the Saone river to begin the trip, then up and down the Rhone river for the middle bit and then back up the Soane river to finish off. Much is made of the confluence of these two rivers because there is a big new development happening there. The guide book says it is due for completion in 2010. All I can say is that the builder chaps need to get a wriggle on (much the same as Dash on Over, but much less immediate).

Hopped off the boat, along with the oldies back where we started and headed for the fenicular that was to take us up the hill to the cathedral. Oopsies! Fenicular not running. Broken. Under repair. Not to worry, we hopped on to the other fenicular that took us up the hill, but in another direction. Walk to the cathedral past (another) Roman Amphitheate, through some lovely gardens and past a toot-whistle-plunk-boom music school right to the cathedral at the top of the ridge looking over the town. Quite impressive, the cathedral. Quite impressive, the town. We could see the Rhone and the Saone running ever-so inevitably to their confluence. We could see the building site. We could see the boulevards and byways of Lyon right there at our feet. It is a lovely city and we must come back to it.

Time to head for home now, we Rambled back to the Hotel de Ville, into Megan and off to the 130+ kmp tollways. Oopsies! Traffic jam! Going Home time for commuting Lyonnese folk. Hold your place in the line time! Don't let anyone in to your line if they haven't spent their minutes in the queue. No PUSHING IN!

After inching our way forward for about 5 km in about 3/4 hour we were again winding up to 130+ kph eastwards towards Annecy and home. Yummy pizza for dins (guest book recommendation) and then hit the hay. Sleep within nanoseconds. Wonderful!

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