17 April – Normandy
Today turned out to be really busy!
We slept in a bit, and thought breakfast was until 11, until I got out of the shower and Heidi said that breakfast was over at 10, and we had 8 minutes! Luckily there were still tons of people in the breakfast room, so it wasn’t a big deal.
We said goodbye to Mont Saint Michel and headed off to other parts of Normandy. We were going to go to Omaha Beach first, but then we saw signs for Pointe du Hoc, so we went there. It was very sobering, and very touching to be there. It was the sight of a battle that took over control of a Nazi bunker at the top of a cliff by the sea. The concrete bunkers are still there, and lots of holes in the ground. Fox holes? There was a plaque in the main bunker that said of the 225 Americans in the campaign, 90 of them survived. It was a pivotal win leading up to the Omaha Beach landing and freeing France.
Then we went to Omaha Beach, and I got a smashed penny! Heidi was excited to actually get on the beach and walk through the water. I think it’s a very unusual beach. The beach itself is very wide, and shallow.
We stopped at a cafe and had some Popeye crêpes.
Heidi had decided she wanted to see white cliffs, but we discovered they were 2 hours away. I really wanted to see the Bayeux tapestry, so we decided to go there first. In our excitement, we completely forgot about the cemetery near Omaha Beach. I don’t know if we’ll have time for that in the morning or not.
It also turns out there is a beautiful cathedral in Bayeux! However, they were having mass, so we didn’t go inside.
After some confusing directions, we finally made it to the tapestry museum. It was amazing!! It’s mind boggling that this thing is almost 1000 years old. It’s not a woven tapestry, but embroidered. It’s also a fascinating mix of artistry, and looking like a 12 year old drew it.
I don’t have any pictures, because I saw the sign that said I wasn’t supposed to take any.
After the tapestry, we raced off to Etretat, which is a very touristy town that has white cliffs and a sea arch. We walked along the rocky beach for a bit, then headed up on top of the cliffs.
We had dinner and I had the best salad. It was so yummy!! Breaded chicken and croutons and cheese. Heidi had a goat cheese salad, again. She said the goat cheese wasn’t the best she’s had.
After dinner was over we went back to the beach to see the almost sun set. We didn’t wait around, though, because we still had a 2 hour drive back to our hotel.
We didn’t get back till after 10:30. It was worth it, though! Such a good day.
Tomorrow is a big day, too. We’re saying goodbye to the car in Versailles and heading back to Paris.