What I love about Lyon

25 November 2009

I am not in a super mood today, I’m on a good ol’ downward spiral. In my opinion, these are essential to get you back on an upward one (I don’t think you can be on a constant high unless you are genetically 100% American), so you don’t need to brace yourself for mad raving comments about how unbelievably wonderful Lyon and life in France is (I have heard that people get turned off by my bouts of optimism, so worry not, no danger today). But we have had a good day so far. As it’s Wednesday, Lucy is off school and we went to one of the many libraries in Lyon, the one that is exclusively for children. This was a wonderful surprise. They had a huge choice of books , CD’s and DVD’s, and a reasonable choice of material in German and English. Lucy and I had a good time, in fact I borrowed a book to read instead of my dreaded LeClezio. (I hereby announce that I have given up on the man and his writing on page 86. ) I am now reading Teenage fiction and it seems that the language is appropriate to my level of French. I bet it’s much more entertaining! :). Lucy found herself a DVD (Barbapapa in French) and a book in German, which – no surprises – is a pony story. But I am so pleased that she is reading in German as well now. That has been difficult up to now. By the way, Marion, if you read this, I have been meaning to tell you for days that Lucy ADORED the Connie book you sent along. She was almost inseparable from it and has already finished reading it. She even preferred reading to playing with her friends at school during break time. Thank you so much for that.

After our library session we went to the Musee des Beaux Arts. Since I have my carte musees, I can go in as often as I please and Lucy gets in for free. We spent a happy hour there today, marvelling at old masters and bible scenes. Lucy was really into it and asked lots of questions that I struggled to answer. I just haven’t got that kind of education :(. But luckily they also produce some wonderful books about art, for children, in this country. Next time we’re in the library I will take some art books out and fill at least some of the gaping holes in the arid and deserted  landscape that is my knowledge about art and history. We meant to do some drawing in the museum too, but we didn’t come across any objects or paintings that we really wanted to put on paper and take home. But we will go again soon, we only saw a tiny fraction of the museum today, so there is lots more to discover and I am pretty certain we will find sculptures (horses???) that just HAVE TO BE DRAWN because they are SOOO CUTE 😉

Oh, and we had a lovely lunch in the museum’s garden. This is a wonderful and tranquil place in the middle of town, an oasis in the midst of the hustle and bustle. Since the temperatures are  still around 15 or so degrees celsius, we could sit in the sunshine and enjoy the late autumn weather.

So what is all this post about? What do I love about Lyon? It’s the museums, that are so easily accessible, the libraries are abundant and so well equipped and everything is within such easy reach. Forget about a whole day out and a train ride up to London just to see art, I can hop on my bike and do this on a whim now. I have to go soon and to take Lucy to her (still rubbish) swimming lesson, we’ll try to go on the bus this week. Last time we went via metro and it took a looong time to get there. Lucy doesn’t fancy cycling at the moment, which would be quickest, so we are still working out how to best get there by public transport. We might end up walking again, as we did last week on the way back… we missed two busses by seconds… so wish us luck today!

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