Thursday, June 4, 2009

Some Background

Perhaps I should fill you folks in with a bit of background to this trip to France. Lacey has worked in Lyon many times as part of her Executive MBA program... sort of immerse her students in a foreign situation. So when she arranged a sabbatical this summer, she planned to take it in Lyon. As part of the trip, she will deliver a couple academic papers here in Lyon and also in Vienna. Then she will take some intense French lessons during her six weeks in Lyon.

On a previous trip, she found this apartment in Vieux Lyon. The apartment is owned and operated by Stephane and Patrick, two very fine fellows who have done so much to make us feel comfortable. They have a web site for their "tower of Lyon". Check it out for a nice interactive tour of the facilities.

One feature of Lyon in particular is really cool to me. A number of years ago, the city arranged with an arts group to create some amazing murals on buildings around Lyon. We found one yesterday morning:


(You can click on the pic for a larger image). I don't know if we will find anymore, but some are almost impossible to comprehend as murals, they are so realistic and detailed. Here's a link to the arts group responsible for the work: http://www.cite-creation.com/. A web search on murals of Lyon will give you some more pics from better photographers than me.

Then, of course, I'm always excited by the odd, yet wonderful. In honor of motherhood and children, I finally found a tribute that impressed me.


We found this on the patio of a restaurant in one of the more exclusive hotels in Lyon. I'm glad the French have such a wonderful sense of humor.

A block away from our apartment is the Gare de St. Paul. It's an open area with a train and bus terminus. Having worked for UTA, the Utah bus company for many years, I have a fondness for public transit. I've also decided the reason so many (Western) Americans don't ride public transit is because there's no cool involved. Check out this Lyon bus... I'd ride it all the time!


Also around this "plaza", is a little bakery. Of course, one can't come to France without indulging in croissants. And this little bakery has great croissants, as well as other breads and pastries. I come down in the morning to the bakery, and a cute young lady indulges my atrocious French while I pile up the goodies, then back to the apartment to gorge ourselves.


Last night we had dinner at Le Baronn. Some of you will know why we choose this place. A very good meal, but not as expected. The coquille St. Jacques weren't particularly special, the steak was decent, but, again, not special. However, the salads were super, with a wonderful mustard vinegarette. Lacey doesn't particularly care for mustard, but devoured hers. I hate raw onions on a salad, but I devoured mine. The French are fucking us up! Viva La France! Finally, desert was terrific, the best chocolate vesuvius ever, and a great apple tort.

Oh, and then there were the t-shirts... do I dare? do I dare? Lacey may censor this report, stay tuned for the titillating...

Finally, a shot of the happy couple from a height overlooking Lyon. Supposedly we can see Mont Blanc in the Alps from here, but I don't think in this modern industrial age we will ever get a sufficiently clear day (and yesterday was an amazing clear day) to see the Alps.


And then there was the basilica, and the guitar shop, and the recording studio across the street, and so much more... And editorial comments (the deiffication of Mary and the French are just like us...) and more. Stay tuned, but now we have to check out Vengeance with Johnny Halliday..

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