We finished the ground portion of our trip today. We accompanied our B&B host to the Avignon market, and marveled at the fresh vegetables, meats, breads, etc. The French love their food and certainly starts with the freshness of the ingredients.
We walked up to the garden at the highest point of the city for lunch, sandwiches and a chance to catch our breath.
We arranged for a ride from the B&B to the ship. It wasn’t too far, but with the heat so excessive and the walk over cobblestones it would have been a difficult trip. Our room is comfortable, but smaller than our last Viking ship, with two twin beds.
After checking in and getting into our room, we walked a few blocks to the Pont D’Avignon, the bridge made famous in song. As you will see from the pictures, another afternoon storm was coming in, so we hid under the bridge for a short while, then took the audio tour of the bridge. The story is interesting, a boy had a vision to build a bridge, and somehow convinced the town people to build one. The bridge was damaged multiple times by floods and no longer spans the Rhone, but by gosh, it is still famous.
We came back to the ship for the mandatory safety training, an introduction to the staff and our first meal. We dined with a couple from Westchester County, learning about their 4 boys (aged 39-29) and their prior travels. They had taken the Viking Danube cruise last year that we took 4 years ago, making us both members of the Viking Explorer Society (which gained us a different name tag and a captain’s reception on Tuesday!).
The meal was good, but 5 courses and 2.5 hours, a bit much for our patience.
Tomorrow we are taking an optional tour to Les Baux and St. Remy, and then the city tour of Arles in the afternoon.