Friday, April 20, 2012

Lovely Lyon

It was a particularly good day today in Lyon. The forecast was for rain, and when I opened my curtains, it did seem dull outside, although it was hard to tell as there was another cruiser moored right alongside ours - always a little disconcerting when you fling aside the curtains to find yourself looking straight into someone else's cabin. It's part of river cruising life. But when I got along the corridor to reception I could see from the other side of the boat that it was a gloriously sunny morning.

Then, Lyon was unexpectedly grand and pretty and (shhh) Parisian, with a striking white basilica on the hill above the old town with a great view over the city, and its one skyscraper, towards the Alpes which fortunately we couldn't see (because that would have meant rain). The funicular railway back down was a real damp squib after featuring quite prominently in the tour description (2 minutes inside a tunnel) but the old town was an interesting maze of cobbled lanes linked by secret alleyways that were used with great effect by Resistance people during the war. That was today's greatest disappointment, that the Resistance Museum, here because Lyon was the HQ of the movement, is currently closed for renovations. I would have loved to look around it.

But, on the other hand, I called in at a big optician that I spotted, in the hope of a repair to my glasses: the frame got bent on the plane to Paris, and when I tried to straighten it, I snapped off one of the arms, so for the past week I've had a sort of pince nez affair going - very insecure, and at Les Baux the Mistral flipped them off my face and sent them skittering across the cobbles. So I was ready to pay anything - but not nothing at all. Rien! That's what the lovely girl charged, after fitting a whole new arm in just a couple of minutes. I love Lyon, and this is how I feel:

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