Annie Bananie en Europe

A blog about travel, life, and everyday tidbits

At the end of the river the sundown beams…

♬…all the relics of a life long lived…♫ Can anyone guess the song lyrics in the title? 😉

19 months since first stepping into Europe. Let me do a quick count. 10 months in Bordeaux, 8 months in Louvain-la-Neuve, and a month last year back in Canada for vacation. Although Bordeaux is supposed to be my “home” city and I’m supposed to spend way more time here compared to Louvain-la-Neuve, it seems like the way things worked out, the ratio is almost one-to-one so far. It hasn’t even been one full year in total in Bordeaux, if we look at it that way! Then June is China and Belgium, then Canada again in September and Belgium in October. It seems like I’m not gonna hit the one-year mark in Bordeaux till…November this year? What a whole lot of movement…and excitement coming up!

At least I’m here till the end of May. Spring in Bordeaux means rain…loads of it! It has been raining intermittently pretty much every single day for the past two or three weeks, and it seems like it will persist for at least another week. Goodness gracious. And it’s cold. Not so much the temperature is low, but the wind really adds quite a chill to the exterior…AND interior. My room is so cold at night that sometimes I have to turn on the heat. Is it really almost the end of April?

It wasn’t always like this, though. I was told that there were a few days in March – most likely the days when I was attending the training school – when the weather was so nice that you could go out in shorts and a T-shirt. We’re talking about 20+ degrees Celsius, the kind of spring (even summer) weather that we really enjoy. Then I came back to Bordeaux and the overcast skies chased away the sunshine. It’s not the first time that the weather turned gloomy upon my return to Bordeaux from Belgium. I think typical Belgium weather, consisting of dark clouds and rain, likes me enough to follow me back to France. I don’t think it’s very welcomed.

Before the attack of the rain, though, I caught a few days of relatively good sunshine, meaning warm enough that I wasn’t going to freeze from the wind by the river. That was about two weeks ago, when one night I decided to bike to the riverside after dinner to have a leisurely walk. It’s been too long since I’ve last been here. Way too long.

The walk started after I parked my bike at a nearby VCub station. As usual there were runners and bikers around, sharing the wide pedestrian area with people like me who prefer to walk slowly down the river. St.Michel cathedral stood tall and proud in a distance, always a prominent landmark visible from the waterfront and usually the first thing I notice when I arrive in Bordeaux by train.

From this angle, the water in the Garonne actually looks somewhat blue, while in fact it is muddy and yellow. There are these numbers that mark the riverside from time to time, in multiples of 100. I’d imagine they mark the distance every 100 metres. Perhaps one day I shall go and find the beginning of the markings and see how far they continue down the river.

I love flowers. These little ones were way too cute and vivid and…happy! You could just feel them waving and smiling at you 😉

When I was in San Sebastián, I said to Mariel that it is the city of flowers. She remarked that I only say that because I don’t see flower gardens everywhere in Bordeaux like in San Sebastián. I chuckled and didn’t think much of the remark. In fact, there are certainly lovely flowers in Bordeaux as well, I just never noticed them. Another place I just discovered is the back of the city hall, where there is a large garden filled with various types of flowers, except the garden is closed for renovations now. There are always new things to be discovered, even in a city where you already feel too familiar.

Place de la Bourse at sundown, with a light breeze that comfortable sweeps across the city, unlike the piercing winds that we’ve been having lately… 😦

Don’t try to jaywalk, monsieur!

Arriving at Pont de Pierre, I decided to get to the other side and take a bike from Stalingrad station, then bike back home to Palais de Justice. The evening twilight sparkles in the distance, sending a glow across the horizon as it prepares the city for the night. So beautiful ❤

I turned around while crossing the bridge to see the silhouette of the Bordeaux skyline on rive gauche. The characteristic French chimneys on buildings and houses are outlined in the distance, accompanied by the distinct figure of La Grosse Cloche on the right.

And of course, there’s the statue on top of the column at Place des Quinconces. Bordeaux doesn’t have tall skyscrapers and impressive architecture that make up the skylines of places like Hong Kong or Shanghai or Toronto, but it’s not without its own charm, right?

Now I just wish the weather would be a bit more stable, that means no more sudden 10-minute periods of violent rain followed by breaks of sunshine. Too deceiving, too unpredictable, too cold, too strange.

By the way, the song quoted in the title is Turn Loose the Mermaids by Nightwish. Sweet, lovely ballad, check it out 😀

5 responses to “At the end of the river the sundown beams…

  1. London Caller April 24, 2012 at 10:59

    Oh boy, the sunset silhouette is so mesmerising!
    So romantic as well.
    So the myth is true then, eh?
    The French are great lovers? Ha~

    And I am in love with France. 😉
    Did you know that France is the most visited country in the world?
    You’re so lucky. 🙂


    • Annie Bananie April 24, 2012 at 11:45

      Hehe, I’ve withdrawn from the illusion of “romantic France” after visiting Paris for the first time, though Bordeaux still gives me some hope 😉 Annie is certainly a very lucky girl and very thankful for that ^_^ When are you visiting France again?


  2. Matthias Pic March 13, 2014 at 11:11

    Beautiful photos !
    But be careful : it’s not “La Grosse Cloche” but “Porte Caillauh” 😉


  3. Pingback: Aug 23, 2015 – [Sunday] WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge: Today Was a Good Day | Picture Worthy

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