Sunday, May 26, 2013

D-Day Beaches and Mont St-Michel

It was Saturday morning, Memorial Day weekend back in the United States of America. What better way to remember those who sacrificed for us all than a visit to Normandy's D-Day beaches.

But first, in Bayeux . . .

 Is there anything that tops a
good B&B breakfast like this one?

 With our Aggarthi B&B Hostess Miriam

Miriam is everything that you would like in a B&B hostess. She is warm, kind, helpful, full of informative tips to traverse the countryside efficiently and runs a clean, quaint B&B.

We enjoyed our stay here in Bayeux.

Bayeux's Cathedral
THE most photogenic cathedral in Europe!

It only took us about 30 minutes to arrive at our first stop.

We got off by the big statue just
like Miriam told us

We must be getting close to our destination

I wonder how Kevin is doing in North Las Vegas today?

We arrived at very holy ground

Overlooking Omaha Beach

So True


There was no large French Army presence
on D-Day but the French People loomed large

Omaha Beach

 Over 9,000 Americans are buried here

 From California



It was Laurie's first trip to Normandy, my second. The emotional power of this hallowed ground is astounding, especially the first time you visit.

Laurie was very emotional throughout the visit.

Christians and Jews working together
in a common cause

Tribute to the Youth who died here 

Coordinating of Forces for D-Day 

 D-Day Landing Map

Attacking the Nazi forces sometime
after D-Day

While this bird in the Cemetery
spoke of Spring and Hope the reality
here is that . . .

 Many made the ultimate sacrifice
on these very beaches

That is exactly what they did for
many future generations

After visiting the American Cemetery we
continued West on the Normandy coast

Pointe du Hoc

This heavily armed German stronghold suffered intense Allied bombing in the months before D-Day. After WWII ended, this area that was eventually captured after heavy losses by American Rangers was left as it was.

Pointe du Hoc Lunar Landscape

Ranger Dagger Memorial

Only 100 of the 300 Rangers survived the assault up the steep cliffs.

Says it all

This is what the Rangers had to scale

German Bunker at Pointe du Hoc

One of Many D-Day Memorials

Isigny-sur-Mer . . . Lunchtime!

It looked good to us

Cool Ceramic Beer Taps

St-Jacques Normandy Style

After visiting these two D-Day Beaches and a delicious lunch, we were off to one of Europe's most amazing sights . . .

The Abbey of Mont St-Michel

You can see it way before you get to it.

Colorful Farm

We're getting closer.

And Closer . . .


Closer still . . .

We made it!
The Sun was out but the wind was cold

It is considered to be one of Christendoms four great pilgrimage sight. Rome, Jerusalem and Santiago de Compostela are the others.

Pilgrims have been coming here since 708 A.D.

The surrounding mudflats and
the rapid tides make it perilous

If you have a competent guide that
knows the tide table, then your OK

When the high tide barrels in, it covers an astounding 18 feet per second.

Mandatory Drawbridge

Getting Hungry Again!

The lower village is . . .

A Tourist Trap to be sure

But it did have great business signs.

Post Office

Crêpes AND Souvenirs

Restaurant with Papal overtones

Every Knight needs a . . .

. . . Damsel

Pilgrims Welcomed

St-Joan d'Arc

St-Christopher had to work overtime
in these mudflats back in the day

Abbey Walls

I don't like the looks of this at all

The Archangel St-Michel

Another Bridge of Sighs?

A BIG Faucet

The Front of the Abbey

Abbey Steeple

Clean Bird

More Abbey Walls

Workers got paid by the stone

Thus we know that worker #8 laid this stone a thousand years ago.

Inside the Abbey

Altar Floor


St-Michel uses the spear is to kill evil/dragons, he needs the scales to evaluate your soul.

A priest preparing to say
his afternoon prayers

Can you pick out the Nun?

I'll have to think about that one

Adam and Eve?

I'm guessing the BVM used
a ton of her patience on this artist


In the early 8th century St-Michel appeared to Aubert, who was the Bishop of nearby Avranches, in three separate dreams. His message was always the same, "Build it here and build it high." 

The first two dreams resulted in Bishop Aubert not believing what he had dreamt.

During the third dream, St-Michel laid a heavy thumb print on Bishop Aubert's that left an everlasting mark. Now the bishop believed.

Offering for St-Aubert

Interesting Red Stonework

The Cloisters

Faceless thanks to some
anti-cleric rabble

Plain Glass

One of two HUGE fireplaces
used to prepare meals

St-Michel's Thumbprint
on St-Aubert's Skull

Clam Shells = Pilgrimage

Nice Hardware

Danger, Danger

Laurie by the gigantic,
15 feet around crypt columns

Great Lighting

By the time we left Mont St-Michel it was 7:00 p.m. and we still had a two hour drive ahead of us to our final destination of the weekend, Nantes.

Remember, the whole reason for this last minute trip was to scout the French Northern Conference Championship game in Nantes on Sunday.

The winner of our Southern Conference Championship game on June 2nd will play the North's best squad on June 9th for the Diovision III Championship of France.

Nantes' Tour Le Lieu Unique

It was late but we made it to Nantes and our nice home for the next three nights, the L Hotel.

We were tired but thankful for another splendid day in France!

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