Normandy

From the time we left London, it was grey skies and drizzling rain. After a lunch of Mussels in Camembert sauce, fries, and a bottle of cider, we drove up winding coastal roads, through villages that saw American troops fighting hand to hand against the Germans: Longues sur Mer, Bessin, Courselles sur Mer. The rain halted briefly as we arrived at the American Cemetery, which had a new visitors center since my last visit, full of emotional displays and film clips.

I also pulled into a road cider “degustation” to try the local Calvados, which turned out to be the same cave I’d stopped at with my sons three years ago.

We then drove into the center of Bayeux and pulled into the first non/chain hotel I saw, which was the Hotel d’Argouges, built in 1732, Michelin rated, and beautiful, with gardens and paths. We walked through town and found the museum of the Bayeux Tapestry, which I had read about 40 years ago .

A short walk brought us near the town’s cathedral with its common story of being founded in 600 CE, burned, and rebuilt. The current version is dark and seriously need of cleaning, the beautiful architecture being masked by centuries of filth.

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