To start, the first weekend (Dec 18-19) of vacation I stayed in Bonneville because I had a friend's sweet sixteen on Saturday and our band concert on Sunday (see previous post for more details). We left early Monday morning for Perpignan (50km from the Spanish border) to stay the night with Lucile's godfather. On the way we stopped at Orange to eat lunch and at Avignon to see the Palais des Papes. In the 14th Century, Avignon was the home of the Pope. The inside was very beautiful and very well conserved.
|Palais des Papes|
Once we got to the hostel, we dropped our bags and went out to explore the city. We visited the St. Catherine church, and took a walk in a public garden and saw another Arc de Triomphe. We also stopped to look at many interesting architectural work on an opera and many houses. We also stopped to visit the Picasso museum, with the largest collection in one place from the artist. That night we ate at Con Cargol (The Blue Snail, L'Escargot Bleu) and the food was amazing! Afterward, only ten o'clock, we went to see the outside of the Sagrada Familia, the famous unfinished basilica by Gaudi.
|Our kebabs at Con Cargol|
Thursday we left Perpignan in the late morning and went to visit the Chateaux Cathares. These very old medieval castles are situated on a rocky mountain, and the only way to climb is by foot. The trail was not too long and it was so worth it because when we got to the top we could only stand and stare at either the beautiful castle or the mountainous view. We visited the ruins of the first chateau and boy was it windy! On our way up, the wind was so strong that we thought that we were going to fall over! We then left for the second chateau that you could see from the first. We climbed another and slightly longer and steeper trail to get to the ruins. This second chateau was on two levels, a lower, older part, and up another small hill, the slightly newer part. There was not nearly as much wind at this chateau, but there were a lit more ruins to see.
|The view from Quéribus|
We left Wednesday night from Montpellier to go to Nancy, in the north of France to visit very close family friends. We spent the next few days and New Year's with them. We went to the Marché Central (Central Market) Thursday morning to buy fresh produce and meat for that night's meal and for New Year's Eve. In Nancy, we visited the museum of the L'école de Nancy and the Musée Lorrain. L'école de Nancy had many forms of architecture that were conserved and was a new way of building and art. There were many glass bowls and vases with intricate designs and multiple layers of glass.
We left for Bonneville New Year's Day and it felt nice to get back my new routines, and to sleep in my own bed again. The next day was spent, of course, on homework and relaxing. We had to prepare ourselves for the long week that was ahead of us. Monday morning, I took longer than normal to get up, and school seemed longer than usual. To make Monday longer, I had karate just after schoool, so I didn't get home until nine o'clock.
It is now the middle to end of a long week and it feels like I had way more work than usual, I think it is time to get a good night's sleep and really wake up and realize that VACATION IS OVER!
Good thing February break is in only 8 weeks!!
Haha, I'm not counting down the days or anything...
To be continued...