I always have grand ambitions to write and document everything I experience and see. Sometimes time gets away from me or motivation wanes and I do not get to post about a place I go or something I see. Nevertheless, the lack of posterity gnaws and nags at me, and I always seem to come back to it. So is the case right now with France, which I hardly wrote about in the blog back in January when I was there, or just after I returned home to North Carolina. However, I now find myself with time and the desire to write, and I’m coming back to my time in France. I just posted about Grenoble, my first stop in France which I certainly enjoyed, and now it comes upon me to write about Lyon, which was a brief but enjoyable weekend stopover between Grenoble and Paris.
Despite my desire to write about everything I saw and did and experienced and thought in Lyon, sometimes a long narrative travelogue is hard on the eyes and minds of blog readers. I find myself thinking about how else I can document a bit about Lyon, a city I knew very little about before arriving, but one that I loved and wish I had more time in.
Although I never published an article on Lyon, I did begin to put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) while I was still there. It provides an ironic glimpse into how fickle our states of mind can be, now that I look back upon Lyon so fondly:
Today was my I’m grouchy and everything is going wrong day. The biggest problem is that my cell service stopped working. When I turn my phone on (or restart it or take it out of airplane mode) I have normal service for one minute, then the signal disappears. It has been this way all day, and I’ve tried everything I can think of to get it to work properly. I don’t know what happened to make this problem begin all of a sudden, but it really hampers my ability to communicate and navigate.
In addition to being aggravated by my cell phone predicament and being a bit tired, I’m also tired of three-hour long meals at restaurants. Put that all together, and today was a day for cheap American food. Lyon, the capital of gastronomy in the country that is known as the gastronomic capital of the world, and I was craving Chipotle.
It turns out that the phone problem had to due with the service providers, not my plan or my phone. In the middle of the night I was suddenly awoken by my phone repeatedly going off when normal service was restored and I received all of my backlogged messages in rapid succession. We did not get Chipotle that evening, but we did find an Indian or Pakistani fry shop that was satisfactory to satisfy our cravings.
Much of my time in Lyon I spent with my classmate Matt, from UNC, and his lovely partner, Katie. We visited a bunch of museums together. Here are some photos from our wanderings around Lyon:
My AirBnB hosts were also kind enough to invite me to dinner at their apartment, which proved a very enjoyable way to spend my Sunday evening. We spoke about everything from public transportation and the museums of Lyon to President Trump and climate change around the world and in France. I do believe they performed a French hazing ritual upon me by getting me to agree that it is important to try new things while traveling, and then rolling out the bitterest of chocolate, the absolute stinkiest of cheese, and the stiffest of Cognac for me to try.
The next day was Martin Luther King Jr. Day in the United States and I ought to have been heading home to the start of classes on Wednesday, but instead I was headed for Paris for a week of hooky and visiting that city for the first time.