Avignon and a Place Called Bauxite
So Saturday, I went on a tour trip whose main attraction was the beautiful city of Avignon. If you’ve never seen it, go. If you’ve never heard of it, you obviously know nothing about Provence haha. SO, it is now time to introduce you to a truly beautiful city.
First! The Ramparts. The “down town” area (what is much better termed by “centre ville” because it has almost nothing to do with an American downtown) is completely surrounded by old Roman walls that are almost entirely still intact. Very, very few cities in France, or even elsewhere, can boast what I see as a real accomplishment. And they are cool. Like history just left us a nonchalant reminder. “Oh yeah! Here’s some Roman walls. It’s whatevs.”
So then we got off the bus. Yeah. I know. We haven’t even left the bus yet.
And we climbed up some stairs to the top of this tower thing (Tower of Dogs) that overlooked Avignon. It was pretty sweet. There was even this nifty little circular map that pointed out where other major towns were and how far away. Pretty cool, but I found myself wondering what in the world made anyone think that would be practical.
INT. PARKS AND REC DEPARTMENT/FRANCE
Dude: Hey! I have a great idea!
Dude: Let’s build a semi-circle so people can know where they are in relation to the places that they’re from!
Boss: Are we putting Japan on there too?
Dude: No! That’s ridiculous!
Boss: Okay! Let’s do it. Public funds are a go!
The REAL cool part though was “Le Palais des Papes” (“The Popes’ Palace). If you want to picture it on your own, imagine a castle…and then make it into a church. Seriously. Fortified and everything. Pretty crazy. Now. If you’re having some trouble with that, here are some pictures. 😉
Unfortunately, our time in Avignon was cut short so that we could go to another place. The name of which sounds a lot like “Aix in Box” which made me think of Fox in Socks, which if you haven’t read a)what was your childhood? and b) go do it now. (It’s real short. Promise).
ANYWAY, that place was really cool. It sits on the top of a mountain and overlooks a valley called “The Valley of Hell” or at least, it was called that. Apartenly cause the wind is attrocious and the scenery is really eerie in a magic-y kind of way. I’m actually really unclear on that. I blame the spanish accent of our tour guide.
While there we went in the smallest museum I think I’ve ever been in. It was about “Santons” which are these little figure guys. They’re a big thing for nativity scenes apparently. Anyway, the museum was like no more than twenty feet by twenty feet total. Real small. Still kinda cool. But they were dolls. Jk. Maybe.
Overall it was just a really nice way to end the day. Adorable little streets that turned upwards much steeper than you would think. A beautiful view from a café that looks out over the valley and a candy shop. And a medieval things souvenir shop. It was like my own personal ren faire all in one shop. It was wonderful for whatever homesickness is lounging around in me.
All in all. Success.
Oh. And I ate Moroccan food. It was DELICIOUS. Caramelized onions and cooked figs over chicken so tender that you could touch it and it would fall off the bone. And couscous. And spices. And some other things that I couldn’t actually identify but reminded me a lot of those little jelly things you can put on your frozen yogurt at those by-weight stores. Not the taste. Just the texture. Haha.
Yes. All in all. Sucess.