Archive for May, 2021

May 29, 2021

Hôtel du Cheval Rouge, Versailles!

And after a bit of a road warrior trip will bring you back to my beloved Versailles, a city so dear and close to me. No need to tell you more  ,just read my blog. Today, I will update a memorable spot even if not on the tourist tour of the palace; this is real city of Versailles. Therefore, let me tell you a bit more on the Hôtel du Cheval Rouge!

I seldom write about a particular hotel unless in the body of a travel visit but never alone. This time I will make an exception because its quant historical and darn right good. There is a history.  I like to tell you about the Hôtel du Cheval Rouge of Versailles. It is a sentimental favorite and we have even visited later on without staying when we lived in Versailles just for the memories. This is the first and only hotel we have stayed in Versailles as visitors way back in 2000, before moving permanently to France in 2003. And behold, we end up living there not far from it!! I guess we like the neighborhood…Notre Dame!!!


The building was built in 1676,was then used by  king Louis XIV as his livery and storeroom. From that time on, the hotel was able to maintain the tradition of the inn where it is good to rest. Ideally located in the cross-aisle of a very busy market place Notre-Dame precisely at 18 Rue André Chernier, only 5 min walk from the palace/museum, the hotel surprises by its calm.

To the endorsement of this tranquility also illustrated by the hotel garden, the comfort of its rooms and the breakfast room. There are eight recently renovated family rooms and other furnished studios; As for the double rooms, the classics have a shower room, the superior ones, more spacious, a bathtub. All have satellite TV and a Wifi connection. And free parking inside!

versailles hotel cheval rouge jan2011

It is the perfect spot to see the best of Versailles not just the palace/museum but the wonderful Notre Dame market, the Lambinet museum, menus-plaisirs, madame du Barry stables, the grande and petite ecuries, the grand commun, and much more of wonderful royal beautiful Versailles.

Have a great stay here and why not, do the inverse of what most do, stay here and visit Paris! Hotel du Cheval Rouge (yes Red Horse Hotel)  is great, friendly, historical, and has lots of souvenirs of my family as well. Recommended of course.

The official Hôtel du Cheval Rouge webpage:

The Versailles tourist office on the Hôtel du Cheval Rouge

Hoping you will have a great stay or had one already ,and hope you have enjoy and come to this jewel property of the city of Versailles. 

And remember ,happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

May 29, 2021

Other monuments of the Trier-Saarburg!!

And again updating these older posts of our family trip to Germany which was as usual for us a memorable trip. The boys decided to go to Germany for some reason, and we were stuck with trying something different than our beloved Spain. We headed by car ,rented a house in Trier, and went out in our road warrior mode all over the western part of Germany. It was awesome! Let me update for you and me our trip to see off the beaten paths areas and other monuments of the Trier-Saarburg area!!

I am coming back to Germany to tell you about some interestings monuments -churches in small towns along my road warrior ways. We drove all over western Germany ,especially along the border with France and Luxembourg. Great rides!!!  Let me tell you about some other monuments in the lovely towns of Ayl, Ockfen, Schoden, and Wiltingen all in the district of Trier-Saarburg and the State of Rhineland-Palatinate!  These are the towns you yearned to visit off the beaten path country towns with nice monuments to boot.

Ayl is a village located in the district of Trier-Saarburg, in the State of Rhineland-Palatinate. Its estimated population is at 1558 inhabitants. It is located west of the State, near the city of Trier, on the banks of the Moselle river, one of the main tributaries of the Rhine river, and the border with Luxembourg.  Here rising in the country side over vineyards you come to see the great spiral of St. Bartholomäus Church.  The nave construction, round arch style, from 1845/48, and the renovations and rectory  from 1873/74. There is a Catholic club and youth house from 1929/33.


The official parish of Ayl on the church in German:

The Saar Obemosel tourist office on Ayl in German:

The Mosel tourist board on Ayl in German:

Wiltingen am Saar belongs to the town of Konz.  It is located about 9 km southwest of Trier on the lower Saar.  Wiltingen has an old St. Martin’s Church in the center of the village, which is already known as the Mother Church in 1030. It belonged to the Abbey of St. Mary in Trier.  The present St Martin’s Church was built in 1909/10. In addition to the magnificently carved high altar of 1910, there are several old depictions of the patron Saint of the  in the church, such as a keystone of 1590 or the part of a stone altar around 1630. A wooden figure on the high altar shows the St. Martin as Bishop: Guardian and Teacher of Faith in His time as today.



The town of Wiltingen am Saar on its heritage in German:

The Saar Obemosel tourist office on Wiltingen in German:

The Mosel tourist board on Wiltingen in German:

Ockfen was first mentioned in 975 in a document by the Archbishop of Trier, Thierry I, as Occava in possession of the abbey of Saint Martin in Trier.  The St Valentin Church at an exposed location 1904-1906 ,the neo-Gothic step hall, was picturesquely composed. Part of the structure inserted into the slope, which sloping sharply to the south, it was additively assembled. The plain construction with sandstone elements and slate fragment insertions ,and moving slate covered rooftop.

The Church of St Valentin, which approaches the floor plan of the cross form, consists of a main nave and narrowly spreading side aisles. The tower builds over a side nave lean on the south side. An overcrowded widening on the side nave gives the exterior building the accent of a cross-ship. In the Tympanum, a three-quartered crucifix deposited by vines. The tower is significantly highlighted with an octagonal staircase.  The interior is on massive round pillars cross rib vaults. The furnishings mainly from the construction period, such as the high altar, the baptism and the pulpit. The original tile floor is also preserved. The left side altar on the side of the choir is the Chapel with Queen of Heaven under a canopy. In the left aisle arm, the late Gothic wooden figure of the patron Saint of the Church from around 1500.  After severe damage in 1945, the Church of St Valentin was restored. The Church merging with the place and the landscape. The protected environment encompasses the rectory, built in 1914 and now modified a simple palm-roof building.



The town of Ockfen on the church in German:

The Mosel tourist board on Ockfen in German:

Schoden belongs to the town of Saarburg-Kell. The village is located directly on the lower Saar. Viticulture is practiced on the rising slopes. From 18 July 1946 to 6 June 1947 Schoden, formed part of the Saar Protectorate. Partitioned from Germany after its defeat in WWII; it was administered by the French Fourth Republic. On rejoining, West Germany in 1957, it became the smallest area state in the Saarland, not counting the city states of Berlin, Hamburg, and Bremen. It is named after the Saar River.

The Church St Paul, built in 1842, is in the tradition of plain chapels in Trier. The three-sided choir end meets the Romanesque east tower of the Church. The two-story tower of the 12C under the roof of the tent set the eaves for the Church hall.  The tower, which is visible from the choir tower and then included as a sacristy in the new Church, shows round-board sound windows. The new Church of St Paul is done  in classicist style, accentuated by a single-neat arched window.  The neo-Gothic roofer, destroyed in 1945, replaces a simple, boxy structure. The wooden gallery is from around 1900. The neo-Gothic high altar with the paintings referring to the patron Saints of the Church work of art depicting Christ appearing to Mary Magdalene after His Resurrection and the leyend of St Paul. There is a crucifixion group from the neoclassical secondary altars of around 1900.  The two-story tower of the 12C under the roof of the tent set the eaves for the church hall.  The simple gable front is enriched on both sides of the portal by the monuments to the fallen of WWI and WWII. On the left, including the relief of a Cross, an arch artificial stone pedicel with contemporary ornamentation of 1923.



The Saar Obemosel tourist office on Schoden in German:

The Mosel tourist board on Schoden in German:

This is one site in German I gather most of the detail information on the above towns as on site there was little to have. The Dekanat or Décanat in French is a religious residence of a dean. All towns are there under “pfarreiengemeinsch”. webpage:

There you go folks, splendid car ride or even by bike (more strenous) we rode all over these towns and it was lovely to go out and come back in each day. The picturesque small towns was great for the bread, the snack and the visit to the Other monuments of the Trier-Saarburg district, in the Rhineland-Palatinate State! Hope you have enjoyed the ride!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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May 28, 2021

Other monuments of Saarburg!

And once again updating these wonderful older posts on my memorable trips to Germany. In my road warrior trip, yes in Germany too, I rode and rode stopping for these unusual off the beaten path monuments for the thrill. I like to update for you and me the other monuments of Saarburg!

Expanding a bit more on my previous posts on the town of Saarburg! A nice picturesque town by the Sarre river with quant city center. The Churches have an interesting history and different architecture.

The Church of St. Lawrence (St Laurentius) is a parish church dedicated to St. Lawrence in Saarburg. It replaced the Chapel of the Holy Cross, built here in the 13C.  In the same place since 1368 was the Chapel of the Holy Cross, which belonged to the Mother Church of St. Lambertus near Saarburg. This steady enlargement led to the fact that the Church of St Lawrence was re-consecrated as a church in 1658 by the Trier auxiliary bishop, and was given the patronage of Saint Lawrence. The next two hundred years led to such severe structural damage that repair was no longer possible. The town of Saarburg decided to demolish and build a new Church in the same place.


The new St. Lawrence Church was built between 1854 and 1856 in the neo-Gothic style. The double-helmet double tower was integrated into the new Church. In June 1855, the Archbishop of Trier ordained the new church.  During a bombing in WWII in 1944, the nearby Saar Bridge felled and destroyed the Church at around 50 percent. The aisle, the choir, the tower group as well as parts of the perimeter wall remained.  The reconstruction again of a new church took place between 1946 and 1949 in a simplified form.  In 1962, the Church St Lawrence received an additional fourth bell. Also in the 1960s, the interior was refurnished with modern elements.  The neo-Gothic Church of St Lawrence, which draws on 13C styles, is a monumental slate fragment structure. The closed massive figure with a slate roof with roof gauss was given to the Church on the occasion of the reconstruction in 1947.


The new Church of St Lawrence is run as a three-aisled hall church with a three-sided closing choir and a portal front. The Church portal in the tympanum above the main pillar portal, the crucifixion of Jesus is sculptively depicted and at the portal post there is a mother God sculpture. The tower, which is stemming from sandstone stone stones and quaked on the corners, is the oldest part of the church. It was doubled to a façade tower in 1563 and raised in 1854 by a fourth floor in the style of early Gothic. The tower was also given the incisive twin pyramid helmet. A Baroque portal dating back to 1780 is embedded in the extension of the tower.


Inside you can see the octagonal Renaissance baptism, which dates back to 1575 and was restored in 1983, as well as two of the former four epitaphs in the eastern chapel room. Other features include four Rococo-style figures representing Saints Anna, Andrew, Franz Xavier and John of Nepomuk, which form a side altar in the eastern aisle. The figures flank an oil painting of the Cross from 1706. The stained glass windows, donated by the Prussian King Frederick William IV in 1855 are preserved in the choir from the construction period of the neo-Gothic church. The Choir, the aisle and the entrance porch above the cross rib vault on bundle pillars still present themselves in the original first-construction state. In the previous Church stood a used organ, acquired in 1739, which was replaced after almost forty years in 1777 by a two-manual instrument .The new organ built in 2004, with high shape reflecting the Gothic tradition of the Church of St Lawrence, the blue cloth behind the pipes the Saar.


The city of Saarburg on heritage in German:

The Saar Obermoselle tourist office on the Church St Laurentius of Saarburg in German:

The Evangelical Church of Saarburg is a Protestant congregation church located underneath the Castle ruins. It was built at the end of the 19C for the diaspora congregation, which had been newly created by continuous migration in the hitherto purely Catholic area and has grown, and remains its spiritual center to this day.  Completed in 1893 in the Historicism style, the Church, like the neighboring rectory,despite severe damage during WWII, the structure of the church is largely that of the edification period. The original furnishings include the altar and the pulpit basket.  Today, the stained glass windows are the main attraction of the Church.


With the Congress of Vienna of 1815, the influx of Protestant inhabitants to the newly built district of Saarburg began in the first half of the 19C. These evangelical residents were initially predominantly Prussian.  It was not until 1893 that a dedicated Evangelical Church was inaugurated in Saarburg. The foundation stone was laid on May 8, 1892, and the inauguration took place on July 11, 1893.

In the period after the seizure of the Nazis, tensions arose and ultimately there was a break between the pastor Schmidt and the presbytery.  In 1945 ,the pastor Schmidt was stripped of his duties for his Nazi affiliation and replace by a new pastor but he remain there refusing to give up his duties until 1950. In December 1944, the church suffered severe damage from air raids and was no longer usable thereafter. After the damage caused by the war, the church was inaugurated again on 10 April 1949.

The Evangelical Church stalls consist of two blocks of straight cross benches, between which a central passageway leads from the entrance portal in the tower to the choir room. In the choir room, which has three set windows, stands the neo-Romanesque altar table made of sandstone, on this one a metal cross. To the left of the altar is the baptism. During the last renovation, the pulpit can now be reached directly from the choir. Altar and pulpit  are still part of the original furnishings. Inaugurated in 1968, a manual organ is the masterpiece, and has a mechanical structure without supports. In 1983, the Evangelical Church underwent an extensive interior renovation. In this context, the stained glass windows were created.


The city of Saarburg on heritage in German:

The Saar Obermoselle tourist office on the Evangelical church of Saarburg in German:

There you folks, go for a nice ride into Saarburg, easy from my base south of Trier and a lovely city center in addition to some interestings other monuments of Saarburg!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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May 28, 2021

Other monuments of Saarbrüecken!

And in my continuing saga of updating older posts for this period and enjoying every letter of them I bring you and I back to Germany. Many memorable moments of the family decision to come for our vacation here and we love it. Memories forever ,as is the case of visiting Saarbrüecken and seeing its many monuments. Let me tell you a bit about them here ok. Hope you enjoy it as I.

Now that I rumbling thru Germany why not bring you to a major city have visited and written on it previous posts in my blog. However, as there is so much to see, believe fair to write a post just on the other monuments of the city of Saarbrüecken! There is a lot more info in German of course I just try to give you some historical background and main pictures , in the hope you can come and see them. It is a nice city to walk its center indeed. We came here by car but once parked walked all over!              

The Saint Jakob Church is the parish church in Old Saar , the center of the Saarland capital Saarbrücken in the southern part of the Diocese of Trier. The patron Saint of the church is the Apostle James the Elder. With regard to its patronage, the church is in the historical tradition of the medieval Saarbrüecken Castle Chapel.  The inhabitants of the original town of Saarbrücken, now the Old Saar Bridge district, belonged to the parish of the Collegiate Church of St. Arnual. But they had their own chapel as early as the 13C. This chapel was built under the reign of Countess Lauretta . The Bishop Philip of Flörchingen  had given permission to build the chapel in 1261.  By 1549, Saarbrüecken became an independent parish. In 1575, the Reformation was introduced by Count Philip III of Nassau-Saarbrücken, and by the beginning of the 19C there was no Catholic parish in Saarbrücken. In 1803, a cantonal circle was built in Saarbrücken, which was then part of France (Département de la Sarre), but it did not have its own church, but had to use the Church of St. John.


The Church of Saint Jakob was originally a three-aisled neo-Gothic stepped hall with a west tower, a little sprawling cross-aisle, a recessed choir room with a chorus and an enclosed three-sided. The facade was emphasized by pillars of four half columns with polygonal fighter plates. The furnishing of the Church of St Jakob includes an altar that can be rotated around a fixed point of view, which can therefore be used for various sacred uses. In addition, it is also possible to completely evacuate the altar and thus free up the altar space for cultural uses.  Other things to see are the sculpture of Ste. Barbara in the left side chapel, the sculpture group Mother Anna  in the right side chapel, the Madonna with Child Jesus in the Chapel of St. Mary, the wood-carved sculpture group St. Anthony , and the tabernacle with sacrament scene. The organ was built in 1950.


The official Church of St Jakob webpage in German:

The Ludwigskirche or Church of St Ludwig (aka Prince Louis of Nassau) is a Protestant Baroque-style church. Symbol of the city, it is with the Frauenkirche of Dresden and the Michel of Hamburg one of the best examples of Protestant church built in Germany.  Built from 1762 under the patronage of Prince Guillaume Henri of Nassau-Saarbrüecken in the center of a typical baroque square, it was completed and inaugurated in 1775 by Prince Louis of Nassau-Saarbrüecken, son and successor of Guillaume-Henri, who gave it his name and the square on which the Church was built. Restored in the 19C and 20C, it was severely damaged by the bombardments of 1944. Rebuilt from 1949 and until the 1970’s. 


The ground plan is shaped somewhat like a Greek cross; the arms are 38.5 meters ,and  34.2 meters long each and are each 17 meters wide. There are niches on the outside which contain statues of the four Evangelists. The stone balustrades were decorated with 28 figures, depicting the apostles, prophets and other Biblical people. The interior of the Church of St Ludwig is decorated with ornamental stucco . Each of the four arms of the cross has a gallery supported by two to four caryatids. The floor is made of sandstone. Until 1944 there has been an organ, the modern organ case is a reconstruction of the historical case. The current organ was built in 1982.


The Saarbrüecken tourist office on the church:

The Church of Saint John ( Johanneskirche) is a neo-Gothic Church built between 1894 and 1898. The Church was not affected by the bombardments of WWII, which razed almost all of the center of Saarbrücken between 1942 and 1945. Today it is used for Protestant worship, but also for many events such as dinners, film screenings, cocktails, etc. It is possible to rent this Church to organize an event. Located at  Cecilienstr. 2, (street) ,not to be confused with the Basilica of St John.


The Saarbrüecken tourist office on the church:

When you walk a lot in a city you get to places off the beaten path, some of the above can be considered that and you find jewels to be visit and hope you enjoy the tour to make you visit them, on the Other monuments of Saarbrüecken!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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May 28, 2021

Yogyakarta , Indonesia!!!

I have said having a great time updating older posts in my blog and for sure bringing back many nice memories of my travels in our wonderful world. I have, also, told you that I have been 8 times out of the last 10 years to Indonesia. Most of these trips were to the more popular cities but once I went to Yogyakarta! I have briefs in some posts but I feel it deserves a post of its own in my black and white series, no pictures.

I have pictures in my other posts on it but now let me give a brief on the history and things to see there if you were to visit , which you should. Hope you enjoy my introduction to Yogyakarta.

Yogyakarta is the capital of the special territory of the same name, in the center of the island of Java, Indonesia.  Its name, which means “the work of Ayodhya”, comes from that of a city in the kingdom of Koshala of which Rāma was the monarch in the epic of Ramayana. The Special Region of Yogyakarta, one of Indonesia’s two autonomous regions (the other being Aceh), owes its special status to the Sultanate of Hamengkubuwono, which has ruled the region since 1749 and led it through the difficult times of the occupation and the struggle for independence

The city is known as the center of classical Javanese art and traditional culture including wayang kulit shadow theater, batik, ballet, theater, music, poetry. Yogyakarta is also known for its silver craftsmen, gathered in the money district, Kota Gede.

The German painter and musician Walter Spies , who was one of the first Western artists to make Bali known to the world, was conductor of the European music troupe of the Sultan of Yogyakarta.

Some things to see here are: The Beringharjo market is a huge covered market in Yogyakarta where you can find everything: a huge choice of batik (clothes and printed fabrics), spices, fruits and vegetables, wicker baskets, trinkets… It is open in the morning only from 8h. The Sultan’s Palace! Yes a sultant still resides in Yogyakarta. He is the governor of Central Java and has a large palace in the city center, which is open for tours every morning. The Taman Sari Formerly, the Water castle of Yogyakarta was the place where the Sultan and his Court came to bathe.  The famous temples of Borobudur and Prambanan are located near Yogyakarta. Take advantage of your stay to visit them!

Oh yes I came here by air. The Yogyakarta Adisutjipto International Airport is the airport of the city of Yogyakarta. The new airport Yogyakarta International Airport or Kulon Progo International Airport, is in the district of Temon, kabupaten of Kulon Progo, which serves the special territory of Yogyakarta in Java, The airport was inaugurated on May 6, 2019. This one I have not try yet.

The Adisutjipto airport webpage is here in English :

The new Yogyakarta airport webpage in English here:

I have great memories of this restaurant and good friends still in touch. The Restaurant Taman Pringsewu Km. 9 Mulungan Jln. Magelang, Yogyakarta.   The restaurant is a pride of the family every time there is an event that definitely has to eat its food here. webpage:

Another nice spot on my world map, and plenty of good memories which I am sure will last forever. Thanks wordpress for allowing me to keep the memories alive, and thank you for reading me these years since November 26, 2010. Hope you enjoy Yogyakarta as I.

The city of Yogyakarta in Indonesian:

The Indonesia tourism webpage on Yogyakarta:

The yogyes webpage on Yogyakarta:

And there you go folks another dandy spot in my world map. As said hope you enjoy my trivia places of our wonderful world. And looking forward to seeing you again Indonesia.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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May 27, 2021

Museum Purna Bhakti Pertiwi of Jakarta!

And going back to an older post of my travels thru Indonesia. A far away land that have come to visit about 10 times in the last 9 years until 2018. I usually went around Jakarta and then spread out with domestic flights and couple times by car! However, on one of my earliest visit was in a hotel just across this wonderful museum Purna Bhakti Pertiwi and love it. Let me tell you a bit again on it, and hope you enjoy as I.

Ok so let me take you along my ways all the way east to the exotic wonderful Jakarta in Indonesia.  I have written several posts on Indonesia in my blog fyi.  However, have written about another important group of museums in TMII but left the very first one I went to without credit and it is a pity not to mention it, the area and museum are very nice indeed. Therefore, here is my credit to the Museum Purna Bhakti Pertiwi in Jakarta, Indonesia.

My historical cultural knowledge was by going briefly to this museum right outside my hotel Santika in Jakarta, Museum Purna Bhakti Pertiwi , the  museum specialized on the life of Suharto, former second president of Indonesia and a powerful political figure in modern Indonesia.  The museum houses and displays the large amount of Suharto’s collections; mostly valuable objects, artworks and souvenirs, received from various world leaders and Indonesian people, accumulated during the 32 years of his administration in Indonesia. The museum is a modern building with design took shape of tumpeng , a traditional Javanes cone-shaped rice, symbolized gratitude.  


The Purna Bhakti Pertiwi Museum was built on the initiative of Madame Tien Suharto, as an expression of gratitude to God Almighty and high appreciation in honor of Indonesian and international community for their attention and support for President Suharto. It was built by Purna Bhakti Pertiwi Foundation for 5 years between 1987—1992 on an area of 19.73 ha. On August 23, 1993 the museum was inaugurated by President Suharto.

The complex of Purna Bhakti Pertiwi Museum consists of main building, supporting buildings, landscape, and house of painting. The main room stores various souvenirs given by the Soeharto’s state visitors, friends and acquaintances. The gifts collections also presented by Indonesian bureaucrats, political figures and businessman. The special hall stores the military decorations and medal of honors once granted to Suharto. The Asthabrata hall displays the philosophy of the leadership of Suharto. It is chronologically visualized in form of wayang. The hall also displays the story of Wahyu Makutha Rama, as well as literatures from different disciplines.

Jakarta museum of purna bhakti pertiwi entrance feb13

The cone-shaped form of the main building is derived from the shape of the tumpeng, a traditional Javanese cone-shaped rice particularly important during slametan or syukuran thanks-giving ceremony, symbolized gratitude to God. The conical shape also symbolized the kalpataru three of life, other symbolic patterns such as Jayakusuma flower, Cakra Manggilingan batik pattern, reflected in the museum design. What can I say different and translated from the museum site.

The official webpage of the Purna Bhakti Pertiwi Museum of Jakarta:

While finding this jewel in Jakarta was very easy. I was put in the Santika Taman Mini Hotel just walking across the street! Trying to be curious as always and walking the beat came upon it right away. The hotel is super and will put the webpage here for future reference and convenience to visitors. webpage:


Hope you enjoy the cultural tour of exotic Jakarta ,Indonesia and really should make time to see this museum of Purna Bhakti Pertiwi! 

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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May 27, 2021

Hospital Virgen de la Luz!

Looking over my blog and updating some older posts taking advantage of our times, I have notice some missing memories that even if hard need must include in my blog. After all, my blog is a history of my life put together in travel and anecdotes. One sad moment was the first recognition something was wrong health wise with my dear wife Martine. This is the missing part of the story. Bear with me please.

I have mentioned the ordeal from the last hospital in Vannes, and the checkup she had at the health clinic in Villalba de la Sierra in the Serrania de Cuenca. I like to show in my blog her second checkup at the Hospital Virgen de la Luz of Cuenca. This is the Province of Cuenca, in the Castilla de La Mancha region of my beloved Spain.

This is a memorable town if writing brings to life sad moments in my life. For the soul is good to have it, for the memories, for the good times we spent together as a family with my dear late wife Martine. And we came down the mountains of the Serrania de Cuenca to visit the main city , Cuenca. Unesco World Heritage Site! Indeed is worth the trip and as we rented a house nearby , we came often here in our trips but not since this sad last trip of August 2017.

The sad story is that my dear late wife Martine was treated for pains in the medical center or Centro de Salud in Villalba de la Sierra while on our summer vacation, the first signs of her terrible cancer. Not knowing what it was yet, we were told to take her to the main area hospital Virgen de la Luz in Cuenca. Here she went thru more tests still not pinpointing her problem until we reach home in Vannes in Sept 2017. She went April 30 2018 but will never be forgotten.  So even if it brings back tearful memories, I have to have it here as this blog is the soothing time for me over time, and have many memorials to her and pictures that will stay with me forever. She was a great wife and one heck of a mother, my Martine.

The main webpage for the Hospital Virgen de la Luz in Cuenca in Spanish:

The health directory of the region of Castilla La Mancha on the hospital:


My Martine goes in in black right

The Virgen de la Luz Hospital in Cuenca is a health center, dependent on the Castilla-La Mancha Health Service (SESCAM), since its inception in 1964. I must add quickly the hospital was very clean , fast friendly service, very nice folks who took care of us very well. I did then, and I say it again very thankful for the service given to my wife there; a group of great professionals.

The emergency room we got int was in sector B building on the lower level. The hospital is at  Calle Hermandad Donantes De Sangre 1 or brotherhood of blood donors street. For a modern twist the local newspaper reported April 4 2021 that there are no more covid19 patients in intensive care in the hospital , good!

However, there is a new hospital coming.  The new hospital complex being built in Cuenca by the Government of Castilla-La Mancha will have more than 114,000 square meters built, of which 74,800 square meters will be for hospital use, distributed in four large blocks: surgical, hospitalization, consultations and general services.  The future university hospital in Cuenca will have a total of 502 beds, 13 operating rooms, two of which will have special dimensions to house the so-called “smart operating rooms”, a maternal-infant block with Pediatric ICU, specialized consultation modules and even a thousand parking spaces for vehicles. More in Spanish in the city of  Cuenca:,61488

Ah forgot this one, after the hospital visit the medications were taken at the pharmacy Graner y Molina on calle Fermin Caballeros of Cuenca. Again nice friendly folks and all rembursed as EU zone. Of course, this did not do anything but nice memories of the treatment given by the folks. I have a picture will include with this post.


There you go folks, I need to have this in my blog for my memories of always. One reason I keep the blog to continue my and my family’s history of travels, and anecdotes! Paris1972 was the first time I saw Paris and stuck, Versailles2003 is when we moved to this beautiful Versailles in gorgeous France. It has been good more so for her spirit that have made us more French, allez les Bleus!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!

May 27, 2021

Other monuments of Le Mans!!

And here I am staying in my belle France with another gem . This time will update for you and me the other monuments of Le Mans which has plenty to see and do. I am choosing one post to tell abou these off the beaten path places ,hoping you enjoy them as I do. Remember, this is in the Sarthe dept 72 of the Pays de la Loire region.

I come back to Le Mans. Well ,this is a very popular city of many popular events. And, I have written plenty on it in my blog. However, as before, I like to bring out the best in each city and after a general  overview come back in details. These are some of the other monuments of Le Mans,maybe not a post on their own but a single post on them is well merited.

The Collegiate Church of Saint-Pierre-la-Cour is the old church dedicated to the counts of Maine whose palace was adjacent. The Collegiate Church now serves various cultural events. It is considered to be one of the five municipal museums of the city of Le Mans. The first Church was first built to prevent the Norman invasions, appearing as early as 865, and safekeeping the relics of Saint Scholastique. Thus the Chapel of St. Peter, located outside the fortifications, is not sufficient to protect the relics. A new St. Peter’s Church was created in the 10C by Count Hugues. It is located between the Saint-Martin and the Comtal Palace. It was restored in 1175 by Henri II Plantagenet, which embellished it with a span and a tower in the north-west. The chorus is lengthened, as a large arch goes as far as the Saint-Martin portal. The choir was finally consecrated only in 1378. During the Hundred Years ‘ War, the Church was fortified on three levels. In 1485, the Romanesque nave is connected to Notre-Dame, underground, by a straight staircase. Five chapels are built in arches around the choir. It is in the 16C that a high roof in the pavilion covers the tower. Many exhibitions are held here today.

The Le Mans tourist office on the collegiate

The Sarthe dept 72 tourist board on the collegiate


The Saint-Benoît Church is in the historic city center. It was built for the first time in the 12C, then rebuilt in the 15C and 16C on Gallo-Romanesque and Merovingian ruins. It was greatly damaged thereafter which led to its reconstruction in 1903. It was reinaugurated in 1910. Its architecture nevertheless brings an original touch because its arrow pierces among the roofs of old Mans, in the crypt of Sainte-Scholastique, we have been able to find old epitaphs and numerous substructions of Merovingian origin. The Church is always rich in statues representative of the golden age of terracotta Mancelle (local Le Mans), proof of the know-how of the potters of the city.

The Le Mans tourist office on the church

The Sarthe dept 72 tourist board on the church


The Church of the Visitation is located in the Place de la République central point of the city. The Church once depended on the Convent of the Visitandines, currently located just behind the building. A problem arises as to its name. The history books and the city name the monument Church of the Visitation while the Diocese of Le Mans lists it as the Chapel of the Visitation. The Church was founded in 1634 and depended on its origin from the former convent of the Visitandines. The interior is Regency style with a large central dome spreading its clarity over two short transepts adorned in Louis XV style. The large lantern visible from the outside is a kind of large helmet containing fifteen small bells. It’s plan follows a Latin cross of about 30 by 16 meters, while an 18C style dome rises some 40 meters above the street level. The nave is illuminated by four large windows while it is divided into four large ridge-vaulted bays. The current staircase was built in 1861 in order to suit the three-meters difference that appeared during the piercing of the Rue Gambetta. In 1792, the 33 nuns who remained in the convent were expelled and locked up in the nearby Ursulines ‘ prison. The enclosure and the garden were sold as national property. In 1793, the conventual buildings were transformed into a prison, the guillotine was installed, and in 1797, the civil and criminal courts settled there. If the Church is returned to worship from 1804, the remaining buildings will remain assigned as a court and as a prison until their respective move in 1990 and January 2010 respectively.

The Le Mans tourist office on the church

The Sarthe dept 72 tourist board on the church/chapel:


The Notre-Dame de Pré Church was built between the 11C and 12C. The Church is located on the right bank of the Sarthe river, in the heart of the de Pré district. It was raised from the rubble of an ancient oratory built by Saint-Julien while his apostolate lasted. The Gothic vault was added in the 15C. The Church contains a crypt in which the relics of Saint-Julien were found, before being transferred to the Cathedral in 1835. The nave is a alternately round and square pillar with a Romanesque marquee. It was the abbey Church of the Abbey of Saint-Julien-du-Pré, which received Benedictine nuns. At the beginning of the 12C, construction was continued and the abbey was finished, which offered a great homogeneity to the monument. The Church is then entirely in Romanesque style. The stone vaults are added in the 15C . A general restoration in the second half of the 19C was complemented by the addition of a large porch-shaped steeple at the front of the façade. In 1950, Max Ingrand created a cross path and stained glass windows for the Church.

The city of Le Mans tourist office on the church:

The Sarthe dept 72 tourist board on the church:


There you go folks, wonderful beautiful historical architecurally stunning old Le Mans a must to see for all its beauty and fame. The other monuments of Le Mans are worth a detour indeed. Enjoy them, and seek more as the above is just a brief introduction to each of them.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

ps. I have to add here that wordpress tells me this is my 500 consecutive daily post! wow! and thank you all for coming along!

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May 26, 2021

Other monuments of Rennes!

And here I am again back in my Bretagne and updating this older post on several monuments of Rennes. I am taking a saving mode and doing on general post on several of off the beaten paths monuments that I like to include in my blog, hope you like it as I do. 

Ok so I have been to Rennes several times, and written on it on several posts in my blog. However, it has so much to offer as things to see, the city is amazing. The capital city of the region of Bretagne, and the seat of dept 35 Ille et Vilaine. I like telll you a bit about some other monuments especially from the history ,architecture side I like.  Therefore, here are my takes on two Churches, Notre Dame St Melaine and Toussaints of Rennes. 

The Notre-Dame-en-Saint-Melaine Church is located in the extension of Rue Saint-Melaine in the center of the medieval town. It is bordered on its southern façade by the western end of the Thabor Park (see post).  The sanctuary is dedicated to Saint Melaine, traditionally considered as the first bishop of Rennes, who died here in 6C. He is buried on the hill of the cemetery in Rennes, where the abbey of Saint Melaine was built. Notre-Dame-en-Saint-Melaine Church presents itself today as a composite building in Romanesque and Gothic style, behind a classical and neoclassical tower-steeple. Its layout is in the form of a Latin cross.


A bit of history I like

The primitive Church was built on the tomb of Saint Melaine, Bishop of Rennes at the end of the 5C and early 6C. The construction of the Romanesque church ,taking from 1081 to 1109, some parts of which remain today; such as the transept and the bases of the tower of the steeple. In the first half of the 13C, the square of the transept was covered with a vault of warheads whose departure is still visible. In the 14C, the arches of the nave and the high windows are redone, as well as the choir. In 1432, the tower of the steeple was rebuilt on Romanesque bases. The façade of the steeple is entirely remade in limestone, also in 1683 a new cloister, but the capitals and columns of the ancient cloister of the 11C are preserved in the Museum of Brittany.

The facade dates to its current appearance of 1676, and is made of limestone. From the old stained glass windows of the Church blown up during WWII, during the bombardment of the city, in 1943, which touched notably the Thabor park, remains, at the bedside a canopy characteristic of the production of the 19C. The stained glass windows are replaced in the 1950’s by simple colored glasses. The large bay of the south transept is adorned with a window of eight meters in height and four meters in width evoking the Translation of the relics from the remains of the Holy Bishop Melaine arriving at the gates of the city of Rennes by the Vilaine river while the laity and clerics prostrate himself in its passage. A Way of the Cross painted in fourteen paintings made in a classical style, inspired by the 17C French or Italian. A great-organ Claus from 1879. The Organ Cavaillon-Coll, former organ of the chapel of the Carmelites delivered in 1874. Transfer of the Church of Saint Aubin to the Abbey and restoration in 2011.


Saint Melaine would have played an important role in king Clovis, which he would have become the adviser. At his death between 529 and 549 his body deposited in a boat would have reached Rennes where he was buried in the cemetery in the north east of the city. A monastery would have been founded at the site of its tomb around 550. A new monastery was consecrated in 630. The abbey remains abandoned until about 937. The bishop withdraws to Saint-Melaine by designating as his successor his son Gautier who takes his retirement as abbot after the accession of his son Garin to the episcopate of Rennes. Saint-Melaine is finally reformed from 1058. Endowed with Abbots commendatory since the beginning of the 16C, during the collapse of the Cathedral of Rennes, the Benedictine monks oppose twice in 1740 and 1770 at the installation of the Episcopal headquarters in Saint-Melaine. The abbey was finally assembled at the Bishopric of Rennes in 1775. The cloisters of the 11C and 17C, the logis abbatial, the conventual buildings and the garden were preserved.

Here is the Rennes tourist office on the Church Notre Dame en Saint Melaine :

The Church of Toussaints (All Saints), formerly Chapel of St. Thomas, Baroque style counter-Reformation, located south of the Vilaine river ,by  rue du Captain-Alfred-Dreyfus. Designed from 1624 to 1651 as the Chapel of St. Thomas College, this chapel became a parish church in 1803, replacing the ancient Church of Toussaints, which was 300 meters away.


A bit of history I like

Chapel of Toussaints existed in Rennes at the end of the 10C, occupied by hermits of St Augustine and dependent on a parish established in a chapel dedicated to Saint Mary Magdalene. Its location corresponds to that of the central market halls built in 1922. The All Saints ‘ Chapel was rebuilt during the 15C and 16C, despite the collapse of the bell tower in 1482 and a tower in 1513. This one, rebuilt in the 17C, collapses again in 1715 to be rebuilt from 1764.

The municipal  Royal College of Saint-Thomas-Becket , (as middle school and future high school Émile-Zola) is founded around 1534 and moves into the buildings of the old Priory St. Thomas, near the Church of Toussaints. In 1604 the Jesuits were entrusted with the instruction until 1762. The two Chapels of the Collège ,Saint-Thomas and Saint-Marc, revealing themselves too small, the instructions given to built the Grande Chapelle Saint-Thomas  consecrated in 1651. The main altarpiece of the All Saints ‘ Church of Rennes dates from 1653.


During the French revolution, in 1789, schoolchildren and soldiers occupied the new St. Thomas Chapel on several occasions. The college became a central school in 1795 and then high school (lycée) in 1803. The seat of the parish is transferred to the Chapel of St. Thomas in 1803, which takes the name of the Church of Toussaints and is no longer attached to the school. Nevertheless, a passage from a courtyard of the same establishment remains, until the 1970’s, the only way to access the right-hand tribune overlooking the choir as the headmaster’s Tribune, reserved for the administrative staff of the school. It was restored in 1834, then in the middle of the 20C and again in 2013.  It is today the seat of the parish of Toussaints Holy Family.

The Rennes tourist office on religious heritage so Toussaints:

The Metro Rennes on the Toussaints Church:

Just two wonderful monuments while walking in delightful Rennes, the best way to see a city. It has a lot of things to see and this is just a minor contribution. Hope you enjoy the off the beaten path churches of Rennes!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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May 26, 2021

The Church Saint Pierre of Baden !

And I bring you back home to my beautiful Morbihan in my lovely Bretagne of my belle France! This is home territory just south of me and very picturesque town of Baden by the Gulf of Morbihan. I like to update for you and me the visit to Baden nice small Church Saint Pierre. Hope you enjoy it as I.

Ok so I was in town for a ride in my area with the boys and came back to Baden only 21 km south of me. I guess told you bits and pieces of it in previous posts and there is so much beauty around it. See my previous posts as Baden is on the head of the Gulf of Morbihan! The monuments around here is huge, and the architecture and history of it enormous. So will tell you a bit more on a simple off the beaten path Church St Pierre (St Peter) of Baden.

The Church of St. Pierre ,built in the 12C, founded by the Rolland family of Cardelan. This Church was rebuilt in 1835-1836 and between 1860 and 1864, when it was completed by a spire with an arrow. The Choir altarpiece dates from the 17C. The Lords of Cardelan had once their burials in the Chapel of Saint John, on the side of the epistle of the ancient Church.


The steeple of the Church of St Pierre forms a remarkable guide for sailors. From the Bay of Quiberon, aligning the white obelisk of the island of Petit Vézy and the steeple, the boats enter the Gulf following the deepest channel. Located in the heart of the town on a headland, it is remarkable for its bell tower built in 1864 and the arrow steeple in 1866 which serves as a guide to the navigators of the Gulf.


This Church of St Pierre, falling apart, was rebuilt in 1835-1836, in the form of a Latin cross, with two aisles. The old steeple, having been demolished later, to widen a path, the Church took a squat short form. The new tower, surmounted by an elegant pyramid, all in beautiful sizes of stones, that can be seen from a very far.


In 1801, Baden was attached to the canton of Vannes-Ouest, or Saint-Pierre, which was accepted by the bishop in 1802. Dedicated to Saint Peter, the present Church dates back only to the 19C, even though it presents in the south wing the outer buttresses showing its Romanesque origin.  In 1869, the rector acquired a monumental wooden altarpiece dating from the 16C and would come from the Chartreuse of Auray. Reassembled and finished , this altarpiece has been registed as a national treasury in 1912. Outside, near the porch, there are two Gallic stele stones.



The city of Baden on the church

The Gulf of Morbihan tourist office on Baden

All around the Church of St Pierre and shops and restos very quant corner on the road to the beaches. A nice off the beaten path into the creeks and cranny areas of my beautiful Morbihan breton. Again, hope you enjoy Baden as I.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all !!!

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