Tourist Hikes Post
Leaving the Pyrenees behind, we're on our way to Geneva to return home. We made two stops for short touristy hikes today. In Carcassonne, we explored the old fortified city positioned on a hill overlooking the region. The ancient rock walls, roads, turrets, towers, and buildings were very interesting. The town itself was really just a mall - tons of little places to eat, buy souvenir junk, or clothes. We did stop in the old church as a quartet of men was singing and the space resonated with their voices. The rain (our first on the trip) didn't help the experience of walking around. I almost lost an eye a few times from short people carrying big umbrellas. :-) It was easy to imagine how this place protected its people aftergreat efforts to build. In Nimes, we paid to explore the Arena which was built by the Romans for their grizzly sport. The brickwork from 1900 years ago was impressive and the audio tour narrative was verbous and informative. Unfortunately, in my view anyway, this structure has been kept in use over the centuries so it has been patched, repaired, and improved so much that the original is difficult to enjoy. The metal and cement seating, barricades, and stages hide the beauty of the old structure. Also, nearly every surface has graffiti scratched, carved, or written on it. And, the litter in corners and under seating from recent event attendees is distracting. This was my least favorite site of this trip, actually the ONLY place I didn't completely enjoy. Our last short walk of the day was on the narrow shoulder of a busy road from our budget hotel to the Ristorante Elefante 2 - which turned out to be a very nice, inexpensive, and quiet place with great pizza and pasta. Our waitress was friendly and a reminder of how diverse the regions of France really are. The general population here looks and sounds quite different than the folks in the Pyrenees region. So, one more day and we'll be winging back over the Atlantic.
Posted: 23:44 06-26-2017 1333