Wild garlic

I took the opportunity of cycling around Grenoble on K’s metro bike. I explored along the river into town and eventually found myself at de l’église de Saint-Laurent which is due to reopen in the autumn. Like the church, Rue Saint-Laurent (where the cute looking Bookworm cafe is) is in the process of being renovated and I’m sure it will be lovely when it’s finished. At the moment it has a shabby charm that is some modified by the cars driving at high speed down the narrow street.

A quick cycle through town brought me out on the Place Notre Dame and I went into the Musée des les L’Ancien Évêché. The museum is housed in the Bishop’s Palace and is extremely modern inside. It was great fun attempting to read the explanations of the displays in French and I think I got the general idea but I had to come back and spend some time of wikipedia just to make sure. The region used to be called Dauphiné and was an independent state until the C14th. The province has since been split into the three departments – one of which is Isère where Grenoble is. The museum charted the history of early cave dwellers on the Alps up to modern times. There were displays on the Roman City here and the Middle Ages but my favourite was the tiny figures of cave dwellers tanning animal hides, trudging through snow and building shelters. The word Dauphiné raised my interest and I found out was that the region gave it’s name to the heir of the French crown. The last Dauphin (ruler of the area) – Humbert II – eventually sold the state to France in 1349 on condition that the heir to the French crown use the title of Dauphin a similar title to ‘Prince of Wales’ in England.

On the way back, cycling along the river the smell of wild garlic floated up to me through the rain. The river on one side, the university on the other, I was balanced high on the cycle path, my camera tucked under my waterproof jacket hungry after a day of cycling and it seemed to me that wild garlic had never smelt so good.

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