Paris, France Vacation Properties Rental Homes - Thibault Villa
Strasbourg,France - Thibault Villa :: To See and Do
Strasbourg,France - Thibault Villa :: To See and Do


STRASBOURG
Strasbourg
From Paris to Strasbourg by train
Strasbourg
Strasbourg from Vauban's Rampart
 
Strasbourg
Strasbourg - ad hoc street performance
Strasbourg
Strasbourg - detail of stain glass from cathedral

Strasbourg - I wanted to return to Strasbourg - a UNESCO World Heritage Site since my mother took me there when I was 11 on a whirlwind tour of France. We did Paris-Orleans-Limoges-Toulouse-Carcassonne-Avignon-Paris-Strasbourg-Paris in about two weeks to take advantage of a visit France rail pass that permitted travel in a circular fashion. The first time I visited Strasbourg was after Bastille Day, 1977. Mom took us on a bateau mouche, one of the glass topped tourist boats that run up and down the glorious Seine through the City of Lights. And doing so on Bastille Day with the stunning fireworks lighting up what is already the world's most beautiful city was quite something. But we missed the midnight train to Strasbourg, arriving at the station just a few minutes late to see the tail lights of the train making their way out of the Gare de L'Est. Needless to say, I wasn't happy. I had warned Mom that we would miss the train, a double decker sleeper that to me was much more important than catching the fireworks. After all, I'd already seen fireworks in my life. And she wasn't happy either since we ended up spending the night in a spartan pale yellow waiting room that reeked of the homeless drunks sharing the lounge with us.

This time was different. I too late to see anything the first time. There was still some day light, but I was tired from having driven along the autobahn in Germany and was ready for some food and rest. I had both, falling asleep at about 3 pm in the afternoon, awaking only four hours later. And then I ended up being an insomniac, reading until 4 am, waiting for sleep to claim me.

The next morning, I left somewhat early, packing all of my goods with me since I didn't know where I would end up that evening. That was a mistake that I would regret later.

I drove into town, the round abouts and dramatic change in directions making me spend 45 minutes for what should have been a 15 minute drive. Finding parking consumed another 10 minutes, but I found a good spot near the water. I layered on clothes and ate a bite and drank a swig before heading out for the afternoon.

I crossed over the river on cobblestone roads, traversing bridges that must have been one or two hundred years old, though perhaps near the locations of Roman bridges from 2,000 years ago of the original town of Argentarium that was the genesis of Strasbourg. The crowds were all in a good mood, festivity dominating the collective psyche as everyone was thinking about Christmas. And it would have been hard to do otherwise with the street vendors selling red Santa hats and the beads of Christmas lights strung across one street after another. - Narayan Sengupta, 1996

Janel and I went back with our very dear friends Scott and Amy Peterzell in 2003. These are some of those photos. - Narayan Sengupta, 2003