It’s Friday evening, the ninth, and we are in Lyon after travelling hal way across France. There doesn’t seem to be a to write about in the last two days, yet we have travelled far and seen much. Perhaps it is because these have been the days in transit, between planned days. Indeed, we had not really thought about what we might find, other than a desire to go through a part of France that we had no real reason to visit.

Life has been complicated by Paula developing a stomach virus, or perhaps it is a recurrence of the bug she had before we left. Anyway, for her this has been a trip to be endured, whereas I have enjoyed the unstructured exploration.

We left a freezing Amiens, in a fog that merely made it seem colder. We only had a TER back to Paris, but it got into Nord earlier than we had feared and, as we had figured out that the RER was the better option to the Metro for moving from Gare to Gare, we found it easy to locate our TGV and enjoy the trip to Dijon.

The decision to go to Dijon was quixotic but I am glad we took the chance. Not only did it land us in the heart of Burgundy, but it proved to have a fantastic old quarter with well-preserved and well-used buildings dating from the Fifteenth Century. Some of the most interesting stuff is not accessible – the merovingian churches and abbey near the station are in alternative use or disrepair since deconsecration in the Revolution. I have lots of photos of winding alleys and the memories of a local meal of sausage and lentils with a great burgundy.

Today has been, in some ways, more interesting. While it has been misty and the air has a bite, the snow has not lingered in the area around the town, although it lay on the fields as we travelled south. As the TGV doesn’t connect Dijon and Lyon, we had a local train and meandered through the heart of wine’s Eden: the Côte d’Or, Côte de Beaune, Beaujolais…

For Lyon we had the Marist connection to focus us, even though I had bookies a hotel a long way from the station. Of turned out to be on the light rail line, but that didn’t stop half and hour of silent recrimination. However, the Mercure was very comfortable and proved to be ideally located for exploring the Old City. Here we found food, fabulous little curio shops, the great Shrine at the top of the hill, and Roman ruins.

We are looking forward to a food local food and wine tonight. Tomorrow, Paula completes the Cerdon Cycle with a pilgrimmage to the Village of the foundress.

It’s cold, but we can feel the touch of the south; and though our time in France is soon to end, we are looking forward to every new sight of this amazing country.