Lyon and Marseilles, heading South in World Cup France

"Wow, who's that movie star in Lyon!" 

Warm days, white puffy clouds, crystal blue skies and scenery like this make for nice touring day.

Besides the sites, we were here for the US vs. Iran game. Now this is one we Americans are supposed to win. Nope, wrong. All I can say is thank God we didn't lose to Iraq.

The huge city rose garden was blossoming full of pink, red and yellow colors and filled with warm aromatic breezes. 

Lyon is France's third largest city and almost half way between Paris (#1) and Marseilles (#2) on the Mediterranean- our next destination. We rented a car for our 3 week tour of France and Spain.

Even though we had lost the game, we were pleasantly surprised by how nice the city was and how wonderful the weather and people were. We enjoyed our brief stay on the way to the next World Cup game in Marseilles

The most prominent site is the Santa Maria church on the hill over looking the downtown harbor side of Marseilles. 

We went up the stairs to the church to take some photos and realized we were out of film so Hans went back to the car for it. He noticed the car window molding all ripped up and twisted on the floor. Some one had just tried to break into the car in the 5 minutes we were gone. This was the first time we had any theft trouble and it happened right after I had told Tiffany about having my  wallet stolen out of my car in Nice, France, during the 1990 World Cup that my father and I had attended in Italy. 

It was the very first time we left a bag on the car floor which was visible through the window. Thieves must have seen it an tried to go for the booty before Hans showed up to foil their plans. Before today, Tiff was fanatical about making sure that nothing was visible in the car - not even a piece of paper - because thieves might mistake that for something of worth. She thought, "We are parked in a church parking lot and only going to be here a few minutes so leaving this bag here should be okay." GUESS NOT!. That is the last time we were not careful.

We were in Marseilles to see Brazil versus Norway. This picture taken before the game turned out to be a foreshadow of the result. Brazil had already qualified but Norway had to win to make it to the next round - guess what happened. Yup, Norway won the game. As the picture shows - they ended up on top. 

Great, so far we'd seen 3 games in the stadium and all the teams we wanted to win had lost - not a good cup for us so far.


The night of this picture we ended up sleeping in our little rental 
car. Even after driving out of the city 120 kilometers, asking 
five different places at 2 am - all sold out.  I also lost or had stolen 
my Brasil hat..... hey, but we were having lots of fun!

But did that disturb us? upset us?... not in the least. We were at the World Cup, watching games, having fun, loving every minute of the excitement. There's nothing like a World Cup and this one, even if it wasn't going our way wasn't changing our minds. 

Still, it was time to get out of France and head for warmer weather and a country that really knows how to have fun. Let's go south to Spain! 

But, we'll be back here to Marseilles to see Brazil win it's way into the Final - I was sure of it!

On the way to Barcelona, Spain, we stopped first in Montpellier to visit parents of a friend of Hans' dad. They were very nice, spoke no English but did speak Spanish. Hans had to try to interpret what they said and translated for Tiffany, who looked more lost than usual. They wanted us to stay with them but they lived near farms and away from anywhere. It was too remote for us. We wanted the sun and fun of Spain! Note: We are attempting to recover a PICTURE from our video, since it was damaged at this time.

PICTURES withdrawn due to excessive shock inducing qualities. 

Next we overnighted in a little but very touristic resort town where Hans used to stay with family friends when he was a young teenager living in England. Since then, however, much to our surprise, that resort town, called Cap 'de Agde, is now quite famous for having a naturalist neighborhood. That means that much of the town is nudist. Well, being the adventurous couple we are and figuring we'll never run into anyone we know, we decided to head into naked town - naked. Tiffany warned the naive Hans, "good looking people don't get naked in public, they don't need to. You'll wish you hadn't ruined your idealistic views on nudity (which for Hans had been skewed towards Nirvana by Playboy) before this day is over." She was 100% right. Big, fat, old, - wrinkled, yes, very wrinkled - naked people everywhere. They were putting coins in the parking meter, shopping for souvenirs, buying their newspapers and groceries naked, even talking to us naked. They stared at our bared suntan lines like we were a pair of tall cocktails at an alcoholics anonymous meeting. Hans, especially, had never been gawked at by such predators with malcontent. We agreed, never again, no thanks!... well, maybe at a Playboy mansion party...
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