Monday, November 19, 2012

Great Lyon Weekend

I enjoyed a great weekend in Lyon that was full of lots of good activities such as . . .

. . . Protests

Place Bellecour is the center and meeting place of many activities in Lyon including this one dealing with the way the Turks are dealing with the Kurds I believe.

Or maybe it has something to do with the local Kebab industry.

Same Sex Marriage

On Saturday, Place Bellecour also saw supporters of both sides of this hot button issue demonstrate. The French riot police were ready just in case things got too heated.

Order was kept as both sides aired their views.

Death of Vendors?

Apparently they are upset with the mayor of Lyon for shutting down where or if these vendors can sell their wares in the city.

Beaujolais Nouveau

This year's limited addition of Beaujolais Nouveau wine hit the streets at 12:01 a.m. on Thursday. This is big news in Lyon, so of course I had to try some for the sake of international relations.

I liked it. 

France's #1 Sports City

On Friday night, I joined our Cadet and Junior team coaches and some of our Senior Falcon players at a banquet honoring all of the various sports that represent the city of Bron.

In 2010, Bron was named as Frances best sports city because of both the number of sports teams operating and the tremendous volume of participants.

The Bron-Villeurbane Falcons . . .


The banquet, which lasted four and a half hours, was catered  which helped.

The bottles of red wine really helped.

Saturday was a "Chamber
of Commerce Day" in Lyon

My first stop on a busy

Lyon's Museum of the Resistance and Deportation has been undergoing a renovation for the better part of a year. It finally re-opened this past weekend.

It is housed in the building that was
the former Gestapo Headquarters

Klaus Barbie
"The Butcher of Lyon"

Barbie headed up the Gestapo during the Nazis' occupation of Lyon beginning in November of 1942. He would be held directly responsible for the torture and deaths of approximately 14,000 people.

In 1944 he started to deport French citizens with an initial sending of 44 Jewish children from an orphanage to the death camp at Auschwitz in Poland.

After the war he would aid the victorious western Allies, specifically the British and the Americans.


He would eventually flee to Bolivia and finally be arrested for his war crimes in 1983. He would eventually be extradited to Lyon to stand trial.

He was found guilty in 1987 and sentenced to life imprisonment. He died in Lyon of leukemia in 1991 at the age of 77. 

The Occupation Begins

The Life and Work of
Marshal Pétain

A French World War I hero, Pétain headed the WWII Vichy regime that collaborated with the Nazis.

Bad career choice.

Jean Moulin

Moulin was the high profile head of the Resistance Movement in Lyon. In 1943 he would be arrested by the Gestapo and be tortured personally by Klaus Barbie.

On July 8, 1943, he either committed suicide or was beaten to death by Barbie depending on which historian you wish to believe. 

1943 Graffiti Protest

Even then the Place Bellecour was the place to voice your opinion albeit that it was a tad more dangerous back then than now.

Resistance Arsenal

Propaganda Poster

Resistance Sabotage

The Deportation

Graffiti War

Jean Moulin

He is always depicted wearing a scarf because while in a Nazi prison in 1940 he attempted suicide by cutting his throat with a piece of broken glass. He would wear a scarf from then on to cover up the scar of his unsuccessful attempt.

The museum is very well done and I am sure that I will return to it a few more times during our season. 

For some, love was in the air
on this wonderful Autumn day

The Symbol of France

Lyon's Swim Complex

It is located on the rive gauche of the Rhône River.

Controversial Art in Bloom

Many people in Lyon believe that the Lyon city fathers paid way too much to erect this dubious work of art.

AVF Tour of Vieux Lyon

Saturday afternoon I joined other members of the AVF club for foreigners living in Lyon as we were treated to a guided tour of Lyon's old town.

Part of the map of the Vieux Lyon

I have walked past this map on the sidewalk by the Vieux Lyon Metro entrance numerous times but I had never noticed it until our guide pointed it out as she gave us a quick visual overview of where she was taking us.

Of course, St. Jean Cathedral was
high on our list of places to visit

What time is it?

So intricate

Our guide gave us great insights
into the workings of the Cathedral's
astronomical clock

The hat of the last
Cardinal of Lyon

Our Guide

From Germany, she has lived in Lyon since 1963 and is well versed in the history of the city.

Adam and Eve

One of over 300 such decorations on the façade of the Cathedral depicting various biblical themes.

Traboule Stairway

Lyon has several traboules which are short cuts through buildings for pedestrian traffic thereby easing the traffic on narrow medieval streets.

Nice Cape

Lady Justice

Where are her scales?

I may have to come back here

Traboule Tower

Christmas is in the air

Nice evening

The famous puppets of Lyon

Photo of a Photo Shoot

Inside one of the studios in a traboule, a photo shoot of this young woman was taking place in clear view of all passersby including me.

Isn't that Francis Ford Coppola?

The Vieux Lyon district may be the old part of the city but it never gets old to me.

Saturday Night Sports

To complete my action packed Saturday, I headed to the Patinoire Charlemagne to see Lyon's Division 2 ice hockey team in action.

The Lions entered the game tied for fourth place in their 12 team league with a record of 5 win-2 ties-2 losses.

Their opponents tonight were the Courbevoie Les Coqs sporting a 5-0-4 record which put them in a tie for sixth place.

The Lions uniforms were . . .

Cheerleader uniforms were . . .

Face off

Les Coqs checked into the net

Lyon led 2-1 at the end of the first period. The concession stand was a bit disappointing with a very limited selection of food and drink offerings.

Danger Lions

Traffic Jam in the corner

When we reached the second intermission, the Lions had extended their lead to 4-1 to the delight of the home crowds.

Les Coqs High Sticking?

My newest Lyon scarf

A wild final period saw the Les Coqs offense finally come to life but it was a case of too little too late as the Lions won their sixth game of the season 7-3.

The Falcons need to sell scarfs.

Lyon Football Sunday

A big part of living in Europe should be immersing yourself in the local culture.

Nothing serves this purpose any more than attending a football (soccer in the USA) game to see the people enjoy their national sport/passion.

Thus, I was off to Stade de Gerland to see our favorite team, Olympique Lyonnais (6 wins-4 ties-1 loss), play against the Stade de Reims club (4-3-5).

OL's record is good for 22 team points which is the third best total in the 20 team French Ligue 1. These 22 team points ties them with three other teams but OL is listed in fifth place in the standings due to goal differential. In European football, running up the score is a must.

The Reims contingent entered the game with 15 team points which placed them in sole possession of 12th place.

First, you need to buy a ticket

I already had a scarf

The concessions at Stade de Gerland were even more disappointing than at the ice hockey game. I checked in at a food stand 40 minutes before the scheduled start of the game. No sandwiches were ready but they did say that the hot dogs would be ready in about five minutes. I opted for some vin chaud (warm wine) which did hit the spot.

Near my seat at another concession stand, they did have pre-packaged sandwiches which tasted just like pre-packaged sandwiches always do. The Coke Zero was good though.

From now on, eat big before going to a game.

Let's check out the view from the Jean Jaures Inferieur side of the stands, Bas C, Rang G, Place 196.

Nice T-Shirt Launching Gun



Hyundai may be on the jersey but Renault was on the message boards.

Pre-Game Banners

Up Close and Personal

The south end zone was loud but . . .

The north end zone was CRAZY!!!

OL in white, Reims in navy blue

All of the Reims supporters and banners were sporting their colors, red and white. Of course, the team was wearing navy blue.


1 on 1

Good leg action

South End Zone

OL goalie in orange

He would have a relatively calm day as the defense played well and the offense forced most of the action.

A rare Reims shot on goal

At the half

To add insult to injury, the only OL goal came with about five seconds left in the half as a Reims' defender accidentally kicked the ball into his own net.

We OL fanatics were OK with it!

Fancy Footwork

Breakaway . . .

Sizing the Goalie up



Terrible call by the ref, how could have made that call against this fine OL lad?

It always comes back to a 1 on 1

Great save by the Reims goalie

He actually played very well considering how many shots on goal he had to defend over the 90 minute OL offensive barrage.


With the win, OL improves to 7-4-1 worth 25 team points. These new totals vault our local heroes into first place with a slim one team point lead over Girondins Bordeaux in the Monday morning standings.

Controversial Art Water Color 

What a great weekend in Lyon!

That being said, I'll be home in Camarillo with my beloved wife, family and friends in only 23 more days!!!


Olivier R said...

In the sometimes crazy european world of sport it s true red and white teams can play in navy blue and second division hockey teams can play in " division 1" .

George said...

Once again, the Internet led me down the wrong path! I'll correct that.

George said...


Olivier R said...

Not your fault Georges! The d2 league is actually called " d1" while the d1 is called " Ligue Magnus"

George said...

So, Olivier, they ARE in D1 afterall, confusing.

We had the same issue when I coached in Sweden. Our team was in Division 1 there but it also was really D2, the best Swedish teams competed in the Superserien.