Bayonne, France (Day 2) - July 1, 2016

Waking Up and Looking Out
After two long flights and train rides, this morning was a good time to sleep in. We left Caroline's apartment before noon and explored Bayonne on foot. Points of interest included Cathedrale Saint Marie de Bayonne, Jardine Botanique and the water closet near the Pont Saint Esprit Bridge.

Getting up and looking out the apartment window, I immediately noticed an enormous cathedral a short distance from Caroline's apartment. Everything else in the immediate area was dwarfed by it.

"The Canaanite"
Entering the darkened building was jaw-dropping. Inside, I was drawn to "The Canaanite" stained-glass window - a masterwork. Back outside, on the entrance steps, people quietly chatted. The calmness of the cathedral seemed to blanket those in the immediate area.

Library Garden - Bayonne Cathedral (Background)
After wandering, Christina and I found the Jardine Botanique, a relaxed little garden in the middle of town. Bright red bridges accentuated the winding walk through many varieties of plants. I was particularly drawn to the proclamations of commitment on the established bamboo. Gardens are for lovers.

Bamboo Graffiti Love
We took a circuitous route through Bayonne, bought fruit then sat to eat by the Pont Saint Esprit Bridge. There, I used a French water closet for the first time. The small building looked futuristic, the rounded door opening slowly with the push of a button. Once inside, I was slightly surprised to find a self-cleaning, seatless toilet flanked by stainless steel bars. I touched a button and listened attentively to instructions given in French. If nothing else, this offered me time to contemplate. I moved forward in the most reasonable manner I could think of. Mission accomplished.

Difficult Water Closet
After dinner on the street, and an opportunity to people watch, the two of us headed back to the apartment. Before bed, we chatted with Caroline. I asked her about French people's impression of Americans. She said that Americans are heavy and believe "they are kings of the world."

We have a lot to work on.

Bayonne Backstreets

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