Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Catching up! Part Three - Travel

In May I travelled on business for the first time in nearly a year, an almost unheard of length of time for me to stay in once country! This trip had been in prospect for some time but but finally came to fruition last month.  Firstly I visited Beirut in the Lebanon and found it to be a lively, vibrant and welcoming Mediterranean city.  I did have a slight hiccup getting through customs/immigration, spending a worrying hour sat in a side office until my passport was stamped and I was finally waved through to baggage collection and meeting up with my contact from Dubai.  The food was superb, the weather warm and sunny and the people friendly.

My second destination was Lyon in France, a city I had driven through and visited my client on the outskirts before, but this was my first opportunity to enjoy the looking around city itself.  Here I visited the Roman amphitheatres and the basilica of Notre Dame de Fourviere both a very hot steep walk up above the river Saone partially through the welcome shade of Le Jardin du Rosaire (Rosary Gardens).  There were beautiful mosaic floors in the basilica that really appealed to my quilting side.  I took the funicular railway back down to the city and then the metro and tram back to my hotel. The public transport was fast, clean and convenient.

In this city of silk and weaving I managed some textile related tourism too, a visit to a tiny silk shop where they sell only locally produced items and have silk looms and a gold braid making machine that you are invited to turn the handle of to make a few more inches of intricate beauty. I also spent a pleasant few hours at the The Musée des Tissus et des Arts décoratifs which had an excellent exhibition of silk weaving from Lyon for over 300 years as well as furniture and rooms covering a similar time period.  Well worth the 8 euro entry, but closed on Sundays and Mondays and no photography allowed.

After this I returned to Beirut for a few more days to complete my work there before heading back home to the USA.

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