Wednesday, April 29, 2009
LOIRE VALLEY: CHATEAU CHAMBORD & CHARTRES CATHEDRAL
Wednesday, April 29, 2009 Chambord Chateau and Chartres Cathedral
The rain had stopped by the time we left Cheverny and we enjoyed driving the countryside roads as we searched for the largest of the Chateaux: Chambord. Located in the center of a forest it is massive in size. Mary’s foot was bothering her so she asked to forgo the visit of four hundred fifty rooms. We took lots of outside photos and then back to the other side of the forest as we searched for the A10 Autoroute for a fast trip around Orleans and north towards Chartres.
Along the road we stopped to take a photo of Mary standing in the yellow fields that we’ve seen ever since Dijon. At that time we thought that it was mustard. Lately we’ve decided it must be something else and we’ve been asking around. Finally today, while we were walking in the rain around the Chartres Cathedral, a lady finally told us. It is called Rape Seed and they make a vegetable oil for cooking from it.
We also stopped for a photo of a very ancient windmill in the center of a field. Then as we entered Chartres we saw the steeples of the Cathedral and our hotel. We went into town confident about the location of our hotel and enjoyed visiting the Cathedral that is know around the world for the shade of blue in their stained glass windows.
Again, restoration work on the outside and inside was extensive. The entire choir of the main alter was hidden behind canvas. But there were still many things to see and enjoy in this wonderful old church that was originally built in 1194 and housed the much-venerated veil of Mary. Today it is considered one of Europe’s best examples of pure Gothic.
We enjoyed our visit even though we had to walk in the rain from the parking structure. Heading back to the hotel on the edge of town we got a bit turned around but managed to arrive safely before three o’clock. Another day completed as we near the end of our journey.