As our vacation on the Rhone River came to a close, we visited the cities of Vienne and Lyon. Besides become more populated as we went north, the terrain of the area also seemed to grow. As can be seen, we were hiking as high up the valley terrain as we could go. Vienne is home to many ancient Roman buildings that survive next to modern shops and cafes. Our tour guide pointed out the similarity of the design of the Temple of Augustus & Livia to buildings much closer to home. Thomas Jefferson, who visited Vienne while he was ambassador to France, used this temple as inspiration for buildings in the United States! Bring from Virginia, this was immediately apparent.
During a hike up Mount Pipet above the city, you are given a beautiful panoramic view of the city. Directly below you is the Roman theater that holds up to 13,000 spectators. The theater was buried for centuries. In the 1930x, it was uncovered completely. It is subsequently used for modern performances including the Vienna Jazz Festival which attracts international performers and audiences.
Vienne and Lyon
Lyon is the largest city on this trip. The Rhone and Saone river converge here at this second largest city of France. To be sure we saw the art and food that elevates this city to international fame. From the galleries, to large food halls with chefs on large advertisements, they have impressive diversity of culture throughout. Following our arrival discovering favorite areas was easy in this accessible area. The Old Town was walkable and accessible. At this time, we interacted with more of the people visiting the area, and we had many friendly interactions. Especially at the photo store where I was able to get a few of my favorite images printed to give as gifts to our tour operators.
Little did we think that only a few months later more Americans would flood the city to support the Women’s National Soccer team! The finals of the tournament is scheduled to be in Lyon where the United States brought home the top trophy again. Although we were not there for such a large event, we can see how this city has the capacity to host such an important, international tournament. Picturesque views as well as the best that France can offer in food helps to put their best foot forward. We enjoyed our short trip, and we look forward to a future trip to the south of France!
Ricardo Noserale of Noserale Home Improvement is another contact I made through networking. Occasionally, you form good working relationships with people you meet through business events, and Ricardo has become a trusted friend that I can depend on. As can be seen in the photos here, and in his work, he is much more than a handyman or contractor. Undeniably, he is a craftsman that takes pride in his work. Of course, I have seen this in work he produces for other clients, but also in my own home!
On this occasion, Ricardo was working on renovating home in Reston. A screened-in porch was removed, and enclosed to make a new living room. While reviewing the plans that he had onsite, it was clear that this was a very large job that required a lot of skills to completely correctly. Given that he has years of experience in commercial and residential projects, Ricardo estimated two months to complete. These days in the middle of the job emphasizes his skills in both planning and construction.
It is a privilege to see experts at work. Since this session, the homeowners are enjoying their large new living room. Ricardo not only is a master at construction, but he cares about how you will live in your home after he leaves. While it can be stressful to have work done in your house, rest assured Ricardo and NHI is a company you can trust to do it right “with no shortcuts”.
Continuing a previous post about a cruise on the Rhone River brings us to Viviers and Tournon-sur-Rhône. Although we had a leisurely morning planned for the day, I got up early to see the sun rise. At this time, we had docked in the marina in Viviers, France. The chilly morning yielded amazing morning light that burned off early fog and served as a backdrop to river wildlife. Waking and stretching out on the top deck was a peaceful start to a packed day of touring.
Firstly, we walked off the boat to tour the lovely old town section of Viviers. The most compelling evidence of the Roman origins were streets lined with symmetrically lined trees. Moreover, cobblestone streets throughout the homes in the walled city make a setting that takes you out of the modern world. Prominent in the middle of the old town is the Viviers Cathedral. As can be seen you get a beautiful panoramic view of the Rhone River valley below.
Subsequently, the itinerary was a cruise further up the river. While the ship leisurely traveled north, we stayed at the top deck to do some sightseeing. Of course, the surrounding countryside had our attention but watching the crew at work was equally intriguing. Due to elevated levels of the river, our ship would be remarkably close to touching the bottom of overhead bridges! With this in mind, the crew worked to remove all obstacles from the top deck! You can be sure I kept my head much lower than the very experienced team that was monitoring our progress!
The following day, we walked through the larger city of Tournon. It was a chance for us to walk through a local market. Additionally, we rode on an antique steam train through the Doux valley. Passing through the forest and over rustic bridges was a departure from touring by bus through this area.