Peaches Prattlings











{October 31, 2015}   Day 15…Marseille…museum…walking tour…cathedral…fort…ferris wheel

Are you tired? I’m beat!

The day started simply enough,  no alarm,  wahoo. Liesurely getting ready, out the door,  then…go!

First stop, Gare de Sant-Charles, to pick up tickets for the Eurorail to…wait for it…[need to use different voices when you read this] Nice! Nice… Yup, tomorrow, we go to Nice, a place by the seaside, c’est marvelous!

After the train station, we headed to our new favorite haunt, Vieux Pont and wandered around for a bit, looking for the square PSM had seen last night and wanted to check out and we did. Then on to a square we passed that had tables outside and in the sun, it’s chilly in the mornings. I know, I know, it’s not east coast cold here like you’ve got back home, but there’s a slight nip in the air.

Speaking of that…people are so conditioned for the warm weather that when it hits in the 60’s, the parkas come out! Mon dieu! We find a nice spot for a coffee and tea, apparently they were out of croissants, huh? How do you run out of croissants? This is France!

We were heading to the place where I got the crepe yesterday and stopped at an open artists market and went to town, I want to be the people we’re bringing gifts to!

After our shopping spree, on to the creperie for some brunch. Let me tell you, when I hit Europe, I said to hell with it, I don’t care about my gastronomic issues, I’m eating what I want and it’s been awful and wonderful, all at the same time. Let me explain…

Remember, I’m lactose intolerant…my crepe had egg, spinache, gruyere and chevre, goat cheese, for those of you not in the know. oh my, but it was good! Sigh…And big enough that it should take us to about 4pm, after our walking tour, perfect.

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We were looking to kill some time, what better way than a fort! We walked back down the waterfront to Fort Saint-Jean, which was attached to the MuCEM, Museum for Civilization of Europe and the Medeterranian. http://www.mucem.org/en/mucem/one-museum-three-sites/fort-saint-jean

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The fort was a military base that protected Marseille, it now represents a meeting point between the city and the museum, between history and its contemporary setting. This is truly an impressive structure, the artchitecture is stunning and the foot bridges and ramps are very art deco, I liked it!

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The first exhibit we saw was Divine Migration. Showing how humanity has grown as well as the progression of religion, quite interesting.

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By now, it was time to head to our walking tour, so away we went, back to the tourism office to meet our guide and fellow walkers. Our guide was Christelle, who is French and did the tour in both English, for the four of us who spoke English and French for the other 15 or so guests.

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She was informative and delightful, but there were times that she spoke at length in French and then what we got what didn’t seem to be nearly all the details the French guests were getting. One of the cool things that happened was that I was able to udnerstand part of what she was saying in French, it was cool!

One of the places we stopped was at the Interncontinental Hotel, which is the very overpriced or at least very expensive hotel, that we stopped in last night for a drink. It turns out that it used to be a hotel! It eventually went into disrepair and in bad shape and about ten years ago, the city decided to shut it down and eventually, the Interncontinetal group puchased and renovated it, stunning!

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We made a stop in a square that is more typical of Marseille, away from the crowds, quiet and charming.

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We stopped in the Hospice de la Charite, which was built to house and lock up the poor and the homeless beggers, nice. Now it is used as a museum space, of course!

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There were a few more points on the tour and we ended in a small square with tables,  drinks at one place, sweets at another,  oh well,  we would like them together please.

We went in search of the Marseille Cathedral, (Cathédrale Sainte-Marie-Majeure de Marseille), kind of hard to miss though. And sitting right on the water.  Can I just say,  wow!

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The city is quite walkable and you can get to the majorority of key sites easily. We came out of the cathedral to look across the way at the Fort Saint-Jean,  which we had not toured yet.

We went into several of the exhibitions housed in the newer structure, first had a bite of something mostly edible…museum cafeteria food.

Next, it was time to tour the fort itself,  what a view!  We really understood how the city would not be taken as long as the fort stood watch. And…you have Notre-Dame de la Garde across the water,  how could you lose!

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Now, we went looking for the gates to the city, at the end of one street,  not sure where the gates were,  maybe taken out for renovation,  hmmm…we just didn’t see them, but…it did bring us back to the main intersection of Vieux Port and…the ferris wheel!

Along the lines of the giant ferris wheels popping up all over the country. Did I go? You betcha!  Did PSM? Not on your life! 

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I must admit,  I had weak kneed moments up there, but it was worth it for the view.  It did remind me of when my mom took me on the Wonder Wheel at Coney Island when I was a kid.  I have distinct memories of hiding under the bench crying “mommy,  make it stop!” A few times around and it was over.

Now for some grub, bub! We went in search of a vegetarian place that I found on Happy Cow, have I told you about this app? Is fantastic!  It gives you vegetarian, vegan, veg-friendly, meaning you will have vegetarian options and stores, you can find almost any nationality.

It gives you location, description, directions, customer reviews, hours and $$. This place was the only one open and now a completely vegetarian restaurant.

It took a hike to get there, uphill, I think we found the less prosperous area of Marseille on the way. It was noisy and crowded and more graffiti, and not the good kind, and a lot more trash.

We finally found it!  Le Quarter des Createur, and it was! Eclectic, loud in spots, but fabulous! We went in to Le Cours en Vert and I had one of THE BEST veggie burgers EVER! The reviewer said it and the owner said it,  it was true! Yum!

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While we were there, trick-or-treaters came in,  Halloween doesn’t seem to be on the same scale as the States, but it’s there.

And…there was a family with four small children and at some point,  the owner came out with two desserts with candles in it and we all sang joyeux anniversaire to a set of twins! Cool,  huh!

After dinner, something sweet, crumbles aux apple, I haven’t had apples in a while, like I said,  all bets were off on this trip!

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Back to the hotel to pack and get ready for tomorrow. Can’t wait! And I can’t wait to tell you about it!

De beaux reves.

And…un très joyeux anniversaire à mon cher doux ami, à partir de marseille, beaucoup amour, KS!!



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