Part 2 of An Ancient City……and an a Exchange Student

The next morning we had breakfast overlooking the central garden and swimming pool, finishing with  coffee by the poolside.

La Residence De France1

Although we had met with Kate and her family over the years, each time was a new stage in all of our lives. We spent the day wandering the cobbled streets. One of the churches we visited had a large group of 12 year olds clamoring with joy over their recent Confirmation Ceremony.

La Rochelle2

We also saw part of the remaining 11th century

city wall by the Royal Port Entrance. 5:45 PM

and we lined up with thousands of others along

the left side of the Harbor for  “The Red Bull

Clift Dive” of 120 feet. It didn’t start until 6:10

when the incoming tide would top, enabling the

divers to dive another day.

La Rochelle3If you look closely you’ll see the green algae growing along the bottom. The incoming tide needs to cover this to insure the health and physical well-being of the participants.

We were facing the taller dive tower with a good view of the divers’ start but were blocked from the finish by the crowd. When each diver stepped to the platform, the huge crowd became absolutely still. They remained silent until the diver landed and the announcer said “He’s O K”. Then enormous cheers erupted. There was a longer wait after a  summer-salt….but not  a sound until “He’s O K.” . The cheering was quieter. I felt he wasn’t OK.

After dinner, Kate helped our concierge make reservations for the Paris Mercure  Hotel. Close to the airport, its location would facilitate our early departure on Delta’s flight to San Francisco the day after. Then we adjourned to the lounge. Mike ordered a bottle of Champagne for our farewells.

This is a picture of the three of us toasting and, unintentionally, blocking the view of a lovely  log fire. Actually, our backsides needed warming.

Exhange student


About carolinebotwin

Caroline Botwin and her husband Mike are retired educators who have always had a yen for travelling: he with a PH.D and teaching Architectural Engineering plus California wine education, and she having taught high school English, speech and drama. Both wanted to learn first hand about other cultures. While Mike predominately studied buildings and structures and met with winemakers, Caroline hunted for ancient sites and peoples. And kept journals of all their travels.
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2 Responses to Part 2 of An Ancient City……and an a Exchange Student

  1. Ann says:

    Seems to be human nature. Anything tall and somebody will be idiotic enough to jump off it, the higher the better. 🙂 What a lovely trip.

    • carolinebotwin says:

      It is human nature to take risks (ie jumping off tall towers) but it was redeeming that the
      the divers were professional…except for the summer-sault…not bad.

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