Joined April 2017 Message
  • Day28

    Honour and Resentment

    May 16, 2017 in France ⋅ ⛅ 24 °C

    Such a tangled three days for us visiting WW1 sites. We stopped by ten gravesides or memorials and three museums. Two visits were to honour family members, others were to honour Canterbury Baptist Church veterans who never came home. They are present or remembered at Villers-Brettoneux, Tincourt, Louveral, Vis-en-Artois, VC Corner, Cobbers Corner, Pheasant Wood, Rue Petillon, Croix Du Bac, and Menin Gate. Every life a premature and violent loss. Every one of them a grief for family. Much to process about this.
    They were mostly optimistic and loyal young men. We honour such life as well as the other women, children, and men forever affected by this.
    Yet more than ever I feel the evil of war. I resent it. I resent war also because it only ever starts in people's minds. That is there the real battles are to be fought.
    A few days of this calls for something different; Bruges will do nicely....
    Read more

  • Explore, what other travelers do in:
  • Day27

    Lost and found.

    May 15, 2017 in France ⋅ ☀️ 20 °C

    This week we are in Northern France. I have three great uncles buried here from WW1. One I can't find. The other two were brothers (my dad's uncles Albert and Edgar Galloway). There's also the deep connection for Canterbury Baptist Church with this area as eight of it's young men were killed here. Time to dwell on what's happened here, and humanity's reason for being.
    A unique day; until tomorrow (Fromelles).

    We stopped in campsites here - the first night in Albert, and the second night further north just east of Arras.
    Read more

  • Day26

    It was 1972, and yesterday.

    May 14, 2017 in France ⋅ ☁️ 13 °C

    It's only happened twice. The first time was 1972. I'm in the back yard at home in Greensborough. A thunderous roar breaks and rolls across the sky. I look up to see and wonder, for Concorde has come to Melbourne. Supersonic passenger flight had (almost) arrived.
    The second time was yesterday. The air and space museum outside Paris has TWO Concordes, the first and the last. I'm eight years old again, lost in wonder as we wander inside and out.
    That was even above the already awesome collection at the museum: whole satellites, rockets, helicopters, 100 years of planes.... A real treat.

    This was a stop as we headed out to northern France. The Air and Space Museum highlights many French achievements. Rocketry and satellites, aircraft, helicopters, as well as the starring Concordes.
    Read more

  • Day25

    Paris part three. Let's walk up there...

    May 13, 2017 in France ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

    Louvre. Done. Museum d'orsay. Done by 4pm. Now, let's do the Champs-Elysées, Paris' mashup of top end Collins Street shops with Royal Parade width and trees. We walk from the Louvre up to the Arch de Triomphe. Then climb to the top of the Arch for a look at the city.
    By now its dinner time. So we walk back down to the Renault concept store. It had an upstairs restaurant overlooking the action on Champs-Elysées. Rough enough. After the traditional slow service we walk for a 9.30pm train 'home'.
    Big city touring. Simples.
    Read more

  • Day25

    Paris part two: the art binge session.

    May 13, 2017 in France ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

    We don't aim low: two vast internationally famous museums, one day to do them. An early start leads to a full and brilliant day. Musee d'Orsay in the morning for 19th and 20th century art. They also have a special exhibition on modern art's take on spirituality as seen in the metaphor of landscapes (that's totally me). Starts with Monet, ends with Kandinsky (as you do).
    The Louvre in the afternoon for anything this side of India in the past 3000 years that wasn't nailed down (and much that was).
    We really enjoyed both these places. Then to finish the day... that's the next post.
    Read more

  • Day24

    Versailles. Birthplace of democracy?

    May 12, 2017 in France ⋅ ⛅ 16 °C

    "Versailles represents the highest and lowest points in European royalty" Discuss.
    When you are the King, and the Louvre is too dinky and squat, and you don't like the neighbours, you built Versailles.
    When you want to forget the poor exist, live in Versailles for a few generations.
    When the poor remind you they really do exist, and would like to keep on existing, they cart the royalty from Versailles for especially strong punishment.

    It is still stunning inside and out, vast and exorbitant. That happens when you act like a Sun God and spend half the national GDP on your manshed.
    Read more

  • Day23

    Paris. It's over here.

    May 11, 2017 in France ⋅ ⛅ 19 °C

    Buildings. River up the middle. Heaps of old stuff. Yep we are in a city again. Left bank espresso was loved; constant police sirens not so much. I think it'll better on the inside. Well see over next few days.
    Stayed in a campsite on the southwest edge of town. Ten minute walk to the train, twenty minute ride into town. Rode the bus across the city from the Tower to the Bastille then walked back to Notre Dame. St Chapelle was amazing. Rode a riverboat up and down the Seine to catch the local charm.
    Read more

  • Day22

    Autostrade/route/bahns. A user guide.

    May 10, 2017 in France ⋅ ☀️ 20 °C

    Here's a quick user guide to motorways, as we've done eight hours on the road today from Switzerland most of the way to Paris.

    French autoroute. Respectable paved roads with utterly random toll booths.
    Italian autostrade. A bit of old roman goat track with toll booths attached.*
    Swiss autosomething. Am I driving? I feel like I'm flying...
    Toll booths. Simultaneous yoga stretching and marriage enrichment exercise.
    THAT sound. It's either an Aston Martin Vanquish or a Porsche GT3. Always heard before seen.
    Fiat Panda. A tin can mechanically or legally incapable of more than 87kph.
    A truck. Speed limited to 90 (ish) in 130kph zones. Aka a rolling brick wall.
    The other traffic. Happily doing 130kph (except the Pandas). Aka a rolling kick in the behind.
    A Motorhome. A hotel suite on wheels, which beyond 110kph thinks and behaves like a hovercraft.
    You. A Motorhome, dodging the trucks at 90 and the cars at 130. More on this in another post.

    Happy trails to you...

    *actually some of the Italian autostrades are amazing. I don't know how this happened.
    Read more

  • Day17

    Now THAT'S a pont.

    May 5, 2017 in France ⋅ ☀️ 16 °C

    (a bridge for you non francophiles). This one is made without human hands: only nature's hand using stone, water, wind, and time. Pont-dArc is part of the Ardeche gorge: picture the Murray River flowing through the Grampians, it's that huge. It's also a national attraction for canoeing and caving; only partly because we canoed it.

    We stayed in a local motorhome parking site for one night here. Dinner in the main street, why did we order pizza?
    Read more

  • Day16

    Pont du Gard. Built to last.

    May 4, 2017 in France ⋅ ☁️ 13 °C

    Romans love a good bath. And a fountain or two. Oh and it helps if one keeps the slaving masses alive. All this needs water. As I'm sure you realise, this isn't even a pont; it's an aqueduct. Over 50 km in total, it drops just 25cm per km. Kudos to roman nerds. This span, the longest of the roman ones is over 250 meters long, aka three Airbus A380s. What a testament to roman ingenuity, culture, and the power of water.Read more

Join us:

FindPenguins for iOSFindPenguins for Android