City Symbiosis

Getting into a city is like buying a pair of jeans. There are those jeans you just feel good in, they are the perfect fit. They were made for you and now you’re gonna wear them to death.

There are those cities I can wear and those cities I can never wear. One of these is Rouen. Rouen is famous for … Yes, it’s where they burned Joan of Arc. So, what do all tourists want to see ?

In the local tourist office, you get the same question

“Excuse me, where did they burn Joan of Arc?”

A small plaque marks the spot. A small plaque in an unkempt garden, beside a very “modernist” concrete church, which has seen better days.

What about a souvenir shop? No there aren’t any St Joan fridge magnets or figurines. No “burn your own Joan” kits with matches and kindling included. A nearby bakery has a heroic figure of St Joan in the window.

The whole place is a kind of uneasy historic melancholy with antique shops, French cafés, Irish pubs and a feeling that this place has seen better days.

Here are a few Rouen photos (did you really expect me to take something nice.)

Heroic St Joan and some nice macaroons.

Rouen downtown sundown

Stake and fries???

Concrete church