Sunday, August 8, 2010

St Savin

I'm not sure how this post is going to go - flickr have made some changes to how you can link to your photos (hark, is that the wailing of html dunces around the world?). Given I thought that html was an abbreviation for hotmail, it goes without saying I'm also having some problems. Photo positioning and text spacings are giving me grief, but I will prevail! Or will at least keep trying.

Onto another holiday recap. St Savin was another lovely little town we visited in the Pyrenees.

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The day we were there it was really quiet, and we enjoyed a simple lunch on the main street (sadly the restaurant we wanted to eat at was closed on Mondays).

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The summer greenery of the Pyrenees made a stunning backdrop for the quaint buildings.

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This church had an ajoining abbey, which housed a small museum.

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We walked in just when the organist arrived for his practice session on the 15th century organ. Folks must have had bad ears back then because that baby was LOUD.

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Behind one of the altars was this gilded piece.

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Holding a large piece of rock crystal.

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Another smaller altar held a Madonna and chubby baby Jesus statue.

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But what I really loved was the patchwork-like stained glass window behind them.

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The museum was small but held some interesting items - including a fantastic painting of Mary appearing to Saint Bernadette (which started off the Lourdes phenomenon).  We were amazed at the old set of bellows from the organ displayed in a corner, no case or rope to keep visitors from touching (don't worry, we didn't).  So different to Australia, a young pup of a country, where a relic from the 1500s would be locked away behind glass probably with a cranky-pants guard to keep nose prints off the case. The sense of history in the Old World is amazing - it's everywhere, almost every street and building, so much that locals forget it's even there. But to visitors, it makes (particularly these smaller villages) seem magical.

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Thanks, St Savin.

Now to hit post. Preview shows everything looking okay, but Preview, you evil sprite, you have fooled me before. Shame on me if you fool me again.

*ETA: Yay, it worked!

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