Traveling With the Troutbirders:
Some fond memories of a vacation trip to France a few years ago. We were with our friends Steve and Jewel. We had left the City Of Light heading north and east towards Normandy and the famous invasion beaches from WWII. One of the many highlights on the way was a morning in Rouen, the capitol of Upper Normandy. I had been urged by Mrs. T’s cousin Joe to be sure and sample Normandy’s most famous adult beverage - Calvados. Sure enough, the tour program included a visit to a place where apples were converted into the famous beverage.
It was all very interesting but the highlight for me was (given my perverted sense of humor) the "tasting" that followed the tour. It seems the majority of the entourage had missed the part about Calvados being a rather strong apple brandy. Given the gasps and chokes that followed our group toast with the beverage, it seems the majority of people had expected to be imbibing a fruity apple cider! Chug a lugging was not a good plan
The city of Rouen itself had a long and exciting history. Here the French kings had been crowned and Joan of Arc burned as a heretic by the English. Naturally, we visited the famous cathedral.
Standing in the square, looking back at the church, I recalled that the French impressionist, Claude Monet, had spent many hours here drawing it. His studies of light and shadow fueled much of his later work. As I photographed the church, standing with a crowd in the square, I had my billfold pickpocketed. Fortunately, my passport and money were safely hanging under my shirt in a little pouch attached to a cord from around my neck. The stolen item was an old billfold I was going to throw away but brought along and put some Monopoly money in it instead. J
Steve, Jewel and Troutbirder in the town square at Rouen where Joan of Arc was burned at the stake. Photographed by Mrs. T.