Friday, August 19, 2011
Hot Times in Toulouse
Basilica St. Sernin, which was consecrated in the early 13th Century (a bit before Notre Dame). It's a beautiful building in a quiet neighborhood. I was there a bit too early to visit the archaeological museum next door that houses some of the Romanesque art and early Christian and Celtic artifiacts, but I hope to get there before I leave the city on Monday.
From the Basilica I walked toward the river, crossing the Garonne on one of the many bridges that connect the two sides of the city. I was on my way to Les Abattoirs, the old butchery that has been converted to a modern art museum. But the museum is on summer hours, and I was early.
Les Abattoirs to open. At €7 it was a little expensive, I thought, but it's a beautiful building and there is some wonderful art on 3 floors, including a massive Picasso. (Click on the museum link to see the Picasso.)
From there I walked back across the river on a different bridge, got turned around a little in the Old Quarter of the City, and made it back to the hotel to take a rest, although along the way I spotted some things I want to take a closer look at later.
After a siesta, I headed over to the train station so I'll know where I'm going on Monday, figured out where the hotel is where I booked for my last night in France--nothing fancy, but close to both the train station and the shuttle bus for the airport. And on the walk back I was so hot, hungry, and thirsty that I was desperate for ice cream of all things. I found a vendor in one of the little parks and sat and enjoyed a wonderful cone. (Actually, it wasn't wonderful, and at €2 wasn't cheap either, but it did the trick and cooled me off nicely as I sat in the park and ate.)
I had thought I might make a day trip out of Toulouse, but given how hot it's going to be on Saturday and Sunday, I think it's going to take both of those days to see everything I want to see here. Plus I'm feeling like I might want to get working before I arrive at the residency on Monday. We'll see . . .