Friday, November 23, 2012

The Charming City of Vienne

A few weeks ago Julien Urgenti mentioned that I should take a day and go visit the nearby city of Vienne.

Today would be that day but not without first some typical French transportation drama.

Julien let me know last night that today Lyon's bus system drivers were going on some sort of rolling strike and that they had indeed announced that my main bus line, the C17, would be out of commission. So my day started in turmoil with me waking up already angry over the situation.

My first alternate choice was the 25 line that goes directly to the Gard Part-Dieu train station but much more slowly than if I could hook up with the Metro system.

My faith in the goodness of people was restored when the 25 bus drove by me on the other side of the street with me still a good 30 meters from the bus stop. I did a half-hearted wave hoping that maybe the bus driver would see it AND wait for me to get across the busy street.

Amazingly he did, WOW!!!

Once at Gard Part-Dieu, I got a very inexpensive train ticket and took the easy 20 minute train ride South to . . .

 Inhabited since the Third Century B.C.

World War I & II Memorial 


Follow the Yellow Leaf Road . . .

First Stop, formerly
St.-Pierre's Church

It now houses all sorts of Roman mosaics and stone works like . . .

This stone that, obviously,
does not roll

Nice Hair

Early attempt at
weather stripping 

Has anybody seen my amphora?

Old Stone Face

 Nice Beast

Are the Irish in town? 

St.-Maurice Cathedral 

It took 400 years to build in part Gothic and part Romanesque styles.

It is HUGE inside

Keys to the Kingdom

How old is this mural?

A Station of the Cross

Pope Calixtus II

Frenchman Gui de Bourgogne was crowned Pope Calixtus II in this very cathedral in 1119.

That reminds me . . .

I'll be back with Laurie in just 19 more days!


I guess that St. Michael
the Archangel was French

Three Holy Women

The Temple of Augustus and Livia

It dates from the First Century B.C. and was, of course, of Roman origin. It is on a par with the famous Maison Carrée that I saw early this Fall in Nîmes.

Time for my morning café

Rule #1 of Euro traveling, never pass up the chance to use a free toilet.

France's last Super Hero

Knights Templar and Moors

Hey, it's almost lunch time

Is that buttress flying?

No heads were safe
during the Revolution

Lunch at Nine

GREAT lasagna!

Instead of the layers being defined by pasta, they used egg plant. It was delicious in a rich oil based sauce.

And, you know it, OH SO GOOD FOR ME!!!

Fountains are still big in France

The Archaeological Garden of Cybéle

This was the scene of the
ancient Roman baths

Got to have an Amphitheater

And a BIG Mural as well

Yes, they did perform public
floggings here back in the day

Reminds me of those good old Catholic school days back in the 1950s and 1960s.

Uh oh, my Pharmacie in Bron
is NOT billed as "normale"

Brightening up the city

Brightening up me

A Case of Mistaken Identity

As I walked past this fine establishment, I heard three men speaking quite loudly in a Middle Eastern dialect of some sort. After I passed it and took this picture, one of the men came out irate and wanting to know what I was doing.

"Taking a picture of American Sandwich" said I calmly as I walked away feeling like a matador strutting away from a mesmerized bull. 

Just an unexplained tower

I was now on the Rive Droite of the Rhône River across from Vienne on my way to the Gallo-Roman Museum and Archaeological Park in the city of St.-Romain-en-Gal.

Needs a little restoration

Roman Communal Latrine 

 The footprint of the
House of the Ocean Gods

Hilltop Fortress

I decided that this would be
a good place to rest for a bit

For the second time in less than an hour, I was in the midst of yet another case of mistaken identity.

I was mistaken for an Imperial Roman General apparently as I was soon attacked by . . .

A Roving Band of Crazed Gauls!

They were tough but I was willing to battle them harder longer!!!

I had them on the run within two hours.

A Manly Boar Indeed

Music to soothe me 

Nice Legs

The Museum had a temporary exhibit on movies dealing with Roman, Gladiator and Biblical themes similar to the one at the Gallo-Roman Museum in Lyon.

Federico, Federico, Federico . . .

How did they do
this without computers?

The 1920s version

De Mille's first stab at this movie

Farewell Vienne

I really enjoyed my day in Vienne before the start of a hectic football weekend.

On Saturday, I'll travel about 130 miles West with the Falcons' Junior team as they open their 2012-13 season in Clermont Ferrand against the Servals (Wolverines).

Then, on Sunday, our 1-0 Senior team Falcons will have our home opener against the 0-1 Chambéry Aigles (Eagles).



Olivier R said...

Just a little mistake Georges. In vienne you were on the rive gauche... So at st romain you were on the rive droite. Btw I don t know if you LL still be here but at the end of june beginning the vienne roman theatre hosts what is maybe the best jazz festival in France and a few rock concerts... An awesome place.

George said...

Olivier strike again!

Olivier R said...

Lol. After " beginning " I forgot " of July" in my message! Sorry for the huskies and good luck at Clermont and vs les aigles!!

Olivier R said...

Oh and one last thing servals are not wolverines, a serval is some kind of big cat from Africa. Don t know the name in English...

Olivier R said...

Actually, a serval is ... A serval! Looks like for an unknown reason the Quebec editor's of marvel comics chose to translate " wolverine" into " serval"...