Day2: Monet, Monet

Our first berth outside Paris is Vernon, where we clawed our way on a road under repair to Claude Monet’s gardens at nearby Giverny. This is his home, the second most visited tourist site in France, where every day people flock to see the magical inspiration that he termed his “greatest masterpiece.”
Monet's Water Garden where flowers and light are featured

The “masterpiece” quote refers not to art, but rather the flowering gardens of beauty, color, and light nurtured by his own hand. He worked them as delicately as his canvas creations.

Monet's Water Garden where flowers and light are featured

Monet’s green Japanese arched bridge is featured in famous paintings and distant in this photo. Click or tap to see a larger image.

Monet's green Japanese arched bridge is featured in many paintings and distant in this photo

The camera captures a garden view twice, first naturally and then with a painter’s flair:
The camera captured Monet's water garden in realism and then something resembling impressionism

Tip: Visit a museum to see Monet paintings; there are no original paintings at his home.

Having absorbed the aura of Monet’s impressionist setting, the tour group returns to port. By osmosis, it appears the same aura has been transferred to the ship, at least when viewed through the camera lens:
The Avalon Tapestry II seems to acquire an impression of Monet

After Giverny, we hurry to the next port the same day: ¡Ándale! ¡Ándale! (not a French word!) we anchor in Les Andelys, which rhymes with ¡Ándale!.

A 300-foot hill holds ruins of a mammoth old castle drawing attention to history. Normandy is a land where war was waged long before the Allies on D-Day, so I begin to learn about the fights of French, English, and … Vikings(?).

Petite Arch du Caroussel and Montmatre in our midst

Chateau Gaillard tall castle walls could only be defeated by time. Les Andelys, Normandy, France

Why was this castle built on this spot? It defended a border 1100 years ago for the territory of Normandy, which was not then part of France. The first ruler of Normandy was the Viking invader Rollo in the 9th century, who signed a treaty in 911 with King Charles III of “West Francia” and needed this castle to watch over his territorial boundary.

Panoramic view of the River Seine at Les Andelys, Normandy, France, from Chateau Gaillard castle ruins

Click or tap the panoramic photo for a larger view of the Normandy territory commanded by Chateau Gaillard along the Seine at Les Andelys, France.

While U.S. history would highlight “on 9/11,” this place addresses “in 911.” One is the current century and the other backtracks across two turns-of-millennia. Each time visiting Europe I have to adjust; the entire text of American “history” is little more than “current events” on the timelines of this continent.

2 thoughts on “Day2: Monet, Monet”

    1. The water garden was spectacular; it was hard to choose a few photos. The “regular” garden was captivating, but not as photogenic in July as the water garden, thus I did not feature it.


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