Our schedules have been overwhelming this year and looking ahead there may not be a pause for some time to come. Our commitment to continue travelling and doing new things needed a boost, so this last weekend we went to Pérouges.
Pérouges fitted the bill nicely. Visiting the town is a day trip from Lyon. From Part Dieu train station the journey took thirty minutes on a regular commuter TER train. The destination station is Meximieux – Pérouges.
From Meximieux to Pérouges
Meximieux is the closest stop with a train station. To reach Pérouges from the station, a short walk of either 20 minutes or 40 minutes awaits. One route is more direct but less scenic. I recommend the scenic route as it wanders through countryside and you pass by an attractive lake.
Pérouges feels deliberately suspended in the medieval period. The town is clearly maintained as a tourist destination. The buildings are restored and maintained; the construction style makes use of the thousands of small rocks that litter fields all around.
With less than a year to go before we leave Lyon, we have renewed our annual museum cards for the final time. These cards give us access to six galleries and museums around the city. They are great value and having them provides an extra push to trek to galleries at the weekends.
This Sunday we visited our nearest gallery, Musée d’Art Contemporain de Lyon (MAC). This typically challenging destination was hosting an exhibit by Yoko Ono. For once an artist’s name that I recognised. Being a contemporary gallery, and combined with my lack of recent art knowledge, visiting tends to be a gamble. We have seen some very strange exhibits at MAC. This is not your typical paintings on a wall type of place.
Despite some irksome security theatre, I was allowed to photograph and film freely. The organisers explicitly asked shared content to be tagged with #YokoOnoLyon; so, I have.
Putting together a film without a story is difficult. You have nothing to edit around and nothing to travel through the footage with. What I ended up with is more a memory of our visit, than a gripping short film. Music certainly helps bind it together. In this case the music is Before I Sleep by Muciojad (CC BY-SA 3.0).
Nails in a Conference Table
We enjoyed the exhibit asking us to hammer a nail into a conference table. Others had taken to hammering nails into the walls and anything else they could lodge the nail into. A sign noted that because the gallery refused liability and responsibility for the public’s actions, you were thus free to augment the table.
The halved dining room table and accompanying place settings was surprisingly engaging.
The exhibit was enjoyable. The tone of the first floor was fun and engaging. The last exhibits were somber and dark in tone. We left wondering if that content would have been better on the middle floor. Something to give us time to recover before leaving the gallery.
I did get to go on a tiny slide built into a wall. That was fun.
Spring has arrived in Lyon and with Spring comes the occasional afternoon storm. I hesitated before grabbing my camera and filming this first hailstorm of the season. Storms are not rare so I hesitated trying to decide if this storm justified the effort. The opportunity to practice filming and editing won out, and I am glad it did.
This storm lasted just long enough for me to frantically grab my Zoom H2n audio recorder, put in new batteries, and record a few minutes of rumbling thunder. I have come to love this little recorder. I knew nothing about audio equipment before buying it. My choice was based solely on a couple of hours of research online – and the low price helped. Since then I have discovered how well regarded Zoom recorders are and how versatile this particular model is.
This short film mixes the audio from the camera with an audio track recorded by the Zoom. The result works well. I tried using only the Zoom’s recording but the mismatch between visuals and audio jarred.
One of Lyon’s metro stations, Place Guichard, has a stained glass wall. It is only really visible from inside the station, behind the ticket barriers. Just like the windows in a cathedral, it is dark from the outside. You need to see it from inside where the sunlight can illuminate it from behind.
I pass through Place Guichard regularly, but rarely have need to get off there. When I absent-mindedly got on the metro heading in the wrong direction the other day, it was a great opportunity to take some photos while I waited for the right train.