I spent exactly one day in Bayeux, arriving to the town in the early morning after I spent the previous day and night on a bus, and leaving with the sunset on a ferry that would take me to Ireland. This little adventure took place years ago, and it was my first time traveling to a foreign country without my family or teachers.
Bayeux is home to Musée de la Tapisserie de Bayeux which exhibits the Bayeux Tapestry. The tapestry is 230 feet long embroidered cloth depicting the events that eventually led to the Norman Conquest of England. Even though the story is told from the point of view of the Normans, the tapestry itself was embroiderend in England in 11th century, a few years after the conquest.
Bayeux is also known for its cathedral. The Bayeux Cathedral is an impressive piece of architecture, and it’s the place where the tapestry was originally stored. It’s built in the Norman-Romanesque tradition and the amount of detail that was given to it is simply impressive.
But it wasn’t the tapestry or the cathedral that I loved the most about Bayeux. It was the architecture of the “common” spaces, which, to be honest, don’t look so common at all. Restaurants, store fronts and entire streets send the traveler on a trip down the Memory lane.
If one strays away from the main streets, they can be met with quiet corners and secretive passages, gates that take them into serene gardens and bridges crossing small canals embraced in stone.
One such gate took me into a corner garden, empty save for the few birds that still stuck around, even though autumn was in full swing. There are only a few places in the world that were as peaceful as that one. In the garden, I found a beautiful statue. To this day, the photograph I took there remains one of my favourite ones.
The daylight started to disappear soon, the sun setting on the town. It was time for me to make my way back to the present and to Cherbourg where my ferry was leaving from.
The town of Bayeux was destined to stay in my memory even years later, when I would go through every single memory stick I own in hopes to find some photos from there. As I’m happy to report with my writing, the month-long search was succesful. For some reason, sharing this quiet town and this serene moment felt important, perhaps because of the turmoil the world is in. I hope we can all go back to our own “Bayeux’s” to enjoy some peace and quiet soon.
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