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Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Les Aventures de Madame Beaubien -- Ash Wednesday

Mercredi des Cendres
We celebrated Ash Wednesday by starting out at 8:30 a.m. with Mass at St. Pierre des Carmes, a church in downtown LePuy that was started in 1341 and completed in the 19th century. We walked about 25 minutes to get there. At times, there was only room on the sidewalk for one person at a time, so we resembled ducks or goats who follow each other single file. 

Walking is the common European way of going places--and the spaces that you traverse are often beautiful like the curve in the road above. Bicycle and public transportation are other ways of getting around. LePuy is a small city of about 19,000 Ponots (what its inhabitants are called), so you can move about very easily on foot (à pied). Besides, finding places to park the car is difficult.

 

I found this sign during our walk. Sebastian is my father's name. In the photo below is the street (chemin).

 

 
Here is the church both inside (my shot) and out (Google images). 







 




Here we are after Mass proudly showing off the ashes on our foreheads. Sr. Simone (far left) joined us at Mass and then afterward for dinner back at the Centre. Sr. Line is taking the photo.
Sr. Simone, Sr. Anita, Sr. Patty, Sr. Eluiza, and me
 The Mass was nice and, of course, I'm familiar with each of its parts. I can't yet understand full sentences in French, but I can hear the individual words and verb conjugations and pick up many nouns so that I have an idea of what is going on. In other words, it's not a jumble of babbling sounds. So I just looked around the church and appreciated its architecture--Gothic, I think.



On Tuesday afternoon after our main meal, Patty and I walked on this path along the La Borne River. La Borne is a tributary to the Loire River. The Loire is the longest river in France flowing north and west 634 miles and emptying into the Atlantic Ocean just south of the Brittany peninsula.

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