Cemetiere American de Normandie

Trip Start Apr 01, 2012
Trip End Oct 01, 2012

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Flag of France  , Normandy,
Monday, July 9, 2012

Guess what, when we woke this morning it was drizzling and very cold. Predicted, but not welcomed. We took our time getting into the day, too cold to make an early start.
Finally, all rugged up and ready to go we drove to the D.Day beaches and a visit to the American War Cemetery.This 172.5 acres cemetery overlooks Omaha Beach. It contains the graves of 9,387 soldiers killed during the Normandy Campaign. First we entered a chapel, a memorial and a garden of the missing which is a tribute to their memory.The visitor centre pays homage to the courage and competence shown during Operation Overlord and the liberation of Europe, as well as to the sacrifice of those who are now resting in this place. The whole complex is very well laid out and a lot of care and thought has gone into the design..  Very well maintained with beautiful gardens A central mall bisects the ten grave plots. the fallen lie beneath precisely aligned headstones of white marble crosses and  stars of David. It is an awesome sight when you enter this section and the huge amount of crosses is the first thing that catches your eye. Once you start walking through the cemetery you realy appreciate the beautiful gardens and surrounds. The visitor centre has lots of video vision to inform you what exactly happened during the invasion. You can easily spend half a day there. We did not spend that much time  because we wanted to visit the actual beaches where the landings took place. Vast stretches of beaches appeared in front of us. It was not difficult to imagine what it would have been like to land there, not an easy feat and would have left the soldiers in a vulnuable position upon landing. Bloody awful really.
After our visit to the beaches, we drove around the villages for a while,  some very narrow roads and sometimes it felt like we were driving on the residents driveways. Time to go home and refuel our stomachs, we still had a cake each to devour . These tasted very good and filled us up nicely.
By now it was 3pm and once again we walked to town. The festival was still on and we wanted to experience a bit of the action. Plenty of that there, a delight to be in and amonst it all. A lot of young folk got dressed up and joined in the festivities. It surprised us how some of the younger kids have learned how to play those early medieval musical instruments. Nice to see.
The smell of street food got the better of us ,and we bought the French version of a hot dog. Much better than the traditional version and we both enjoyed eating it. A beer and wine to go with it was a delicious end to our day.
Moving on again tomorrow, a little sad to leave this area , we will always remember it with fondness. It has not rained since lunchtime and the sun has been doing its darnest to get through and is succeeding at this present time. Keep our fingers crossed eh.
Just heard that Mark Webber has won the FI at Silverstone, more good news.
See you tomorrow.
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phil hanks on

hi rick willie. been over 30 degrees here in azille the past days.just turn around and come back. safe return to the uk and much love to you both

sally & phil xx

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