Monday 9/7/09

After enjoying our last breakfast in Paris, we took a morning train to Bayeux, a small town in Normandy.  It was famous the first French town liberated by the Allies during WWII, so it was not bombed as other most of the other French towns in Normandy were.  Since it was occupied so quickly, there was little to no damage done to the town itself, and all of the original buildings are in excellent shape.  We arrived around lunchtime, and despite a problem with our hotel booking, we were strolling around town in the early afternoon.  The timing of our arrival was ironic, because most of the shops in this small town close for lunch for 1.5 hours, and we were left to peer in the windows of these quaint shops while the owners were out.  We made our way to one of the other tourist attractions of the city, a medieval tapestry that depicts the story of the Norman invasion of 1066.  The tapestry was created shortly after the battle (making it ~1000 years old) and is almost 70 meters long!  The tapestry itself was interesting and had its own humor to it: the bishop of the church carried a mace into battle, because as a clergyman, he could not kill anyone or shed blood, but could knock his opponents senseless!  After leaving the tapestry, we visited the cathedral (Notre Dame), which we all found to be more impressive than the famous Paris Notre Dame.  It was built in 1068 with amazing spires, interior architecture, and beautiful stained glass.  We walked around the village a bit more, taking in the simplicity of the town, with cobblestone streets that were only wide enough for one car to pass.

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