Friday, September 7, 2012

Normandy: Day 3

Today was a break from the WWII stuff. We had heard about a Tapestry in Bayeux that was a must see. So, we saw.
Here is a photo taken by someone, not me, because that would've been illegal. (source)
It was a story about how William the Conquerer came to rule over England, embroidered on a 230 foot cloth. The audio tour kept us going at a great pace, even the kids enjoyed it. Upstairs were several models of castles and cathedrals, mannequins telling there stories and plenty of chain mail and armor to keep the boys amused. Theo really liked the models.

Bayeux Cathedral

Fresh French Poppies in the windows
Ty dropped his bouncy ball in the stream
After the museum, we doted on the adorable village of Bayeux and then hopped in the car for the drive to Mont St. Michel. (it was my one request on this trip)

We had to drive about 2 hours southwest, and spent some time on country roads. But they were French, so it was okay. And, by the way, we passed a few more WWII monuments, but we didn't stop.

As soon as MSM was in sight, we decided to stop for lunch. We ate panini's and crepes. Of course.
Mont St. Michel is gorgeous, and such a sight from a distance.

We parked and walked to the shuttle that takes you across the causeway and to the foot of the village. Once upon a time there was a parking lot open to the public, but we heard that people would come back and find their cars underwater. The tides in the area can change quickly and have been described as the highest in Europe.
As a result there was construction going on to build a bridge next to the causeway.

(this might be one of my favorite pictures that we've taken over here)
Mont St. Michel was INCREDIBLE! As soon as we entered I felt like we had stepped back in time.
The cobblestone path winds you up the mountain until you reach the stairs that lead you to the Abbey. We contemplated carrying the stroller for about 2 minutes, then a German family came down and saw us strategizing. They kindly told us not to do it, there were too many stairs. Shane, Ty and Theo decided to wait while Cannon, Ryli and me made the hike.
I'm so glad we did.
(I once read a really long book about the construction of cathedrals, and the political and religious bureaucracy involved in these buildings. I've had a different appreciation for them ever since.)
View from the top balcony.
The views were awesome, and I love any opportunity to take the interested of my children and share something with them. 

Inside the Abbey

The Cloisters (also Shane's new favorite word. It has multiple meanings, use your imagination)

Another one of my favorites-

St. Michel
We finally made it back down to our other half. We were glad to take a seat and let Shane and Ty do a little exploring of their own.

They found a smaller chapel with some stained glass that Ty was very fond of.
They also found a small cemetery.
We did a little shopping then shuttled back to our car. It was a lovely afternoon, and well worth the drive.
We got back to camp with plenty of time for the boys to wrestle.


Liz said...

i'm a sucker for cloisters. i made Will pose with me in the Westminster Abbey cloisters. it's one of my favorites!

Jeanie Whitelaw said...

I loved the first statue of St Michel. The detail was just amazing... awesome :)Also loved seeing the kids... always love seeing those kids :)))

Jennifer R. said...

3 things. 1- please consider publishing a book with your photography and historical journaling of this time. 2- words cannot express how thrilled I was to see your Mont St. Michel post 3-love you and wish I was there wearing out my welcome!