Today we decided to head out of town with the family and go to the city of Nimes, which was a train ride away. Nimes is a beautiful ancient city dating back to the Romans. The ruins there were similar to the one's we saw in Arles, but the city itself looked more modern. There were shops like in Aix en Provence, and lots of places to eat. We found a very nice cafe where we could sit outside to eat lunch. The food and service was excellent.
After lunch, we walked over to the Roman colloseum. The setup was more touristy than in Arles. More lights, signs, audio tour, and lots of people. Chris & I left the family and climbed all the way to the very top so that we could see out over the city. They still do gladiator and bull fights in the ring during the summer there. Hard to imagine the amount of inhumane cruelty that has occurred within those walls.
From there, we walked towards the Roman tower, which was a long walk through Nimes. We stopped off in the gardens where there was ruins of a Roman temple to Athena along with statutes spread out throughout the gardens. A bubbling spring ran right underneath the park and created a small river that flowed through the city.
While standing in the garden, it started to rain, and none of us had brought our umbrellas. Chris & I started walking up the tall hill to the tower in the rain, while the rest of the family decided to stay behind and take cover at a local cafe.
The walk uphill was a bit of a hike, and we got pretty wet doing it, but it was worth it to get to the tower. We climbed the spiral staircase inside to the top where we had quite a view of the city.
After meeting back up with the family, we went over to the Roman theater where they had an indoor 3D movie of the history of Nimes. It was only 20 minutes long, and pretty cheesy.
We got back to Marseille, and Chris cooked dinner for everyone. Walnut encrusted duck breasts, asparagus, mashed potatoes, and chocolate lava cakes for dessert, along with a bottle of sparkling wine. It was delicous!
Pictures can be found at http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=23652&id=1012407145&l=0316577f60
more pictures at http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=23655&id=1012407145&l=87a67e93f9