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Lyon - Old Town - Semi-Finals

Heat gives way to gorgeous day

sunny 86 °F
View WWC 2019 on M6-Greg's travel map.

It is a gorgeous day today as the temperature dropped to very warm. Jerry is more of an earlier riser like me (or maybe because of me?) so we decided to go out exploring before the main troups are up. Also, the group had not figured out the local public transporation yet either. For some reason, google doesn't show any of it as an option. So we just went to the Tram and started looking at the maps and used the ticket machine (which did offer English) to plot a roundabout course to the old part of town.

Saw some pretty cool buildings and areas along the way as well the sights up on the hill. And of course I know that it is hard to believe, but there is an old Cathedral in town as well.

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Jerry and I venture upward to the ancient roman theater. It is pretty cool as they have integrated modern equipment and hold shows there still - would be awesome to see something there, but there doesn't appear to be anything until after we leave.

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The Basilica further up the hill in Fourviere is yes, you guessed it, yet another old church. Their interesting wrinkle is that they have a mass or something going on with singing and talking, etc. They were happy to have guests during it. They also have a rather unique crypt (almost more of a chapel in the lower floors). Naturally, there are nice views back down to the old town as well.

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We meet up with Phil and Kate for lunch. At the same place Phil and Kate had eaten nearly 20 years ago - on the square just beside the Cathedral - La Gargouille. Sally decided to skip the metro/tram and make the entire walk, so she joined after a little while. And Ivan and Diana finally arrive as well.

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A bit of strolling through the Old town and I really enjoyed all of the fancy presentations and specialty shops. We run into Rich form Dijon and meet his daughter as well. They are heading out to Mont Blanc. Super nice people, they invited me to go with them (they have 1 seat left in their car and a sofa sleeper in Chamonix - but alas - I can't ditch my friends, but it was tempting :)

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GAME DAY BABY. They are all big games from here on out. The stadium in Lyon is much newer, but way out away from the town. We knew we were in for another long trip home. The stadium area was laid out in a strange manner. There were tons of stadium food vendors outside of the stadium. We weren't sure if we could get drinks/food inside the stadium. Once inside, there were much smaller lines for drinks, restrooms, etc. We found out at half-time you could go in/out to the stadium purgatory, which was really odd.

For whatever reason, I was a bit hit with the camera's and photo crews. I got interviewed by Telemundo/NBC - but I guess I wasn't so interesting as no one told me that they saw me. We saw the Fox Sports crew and lived through Jerry's crush on their crew. Between photo bombing and actual requests to be in pictures, I must have been in about 20 photos or camera feeds. Phil later told me he saw me on the big screen in the stadium as well....

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It was a much tighter/closer game than it should have been. We played well in the first half, but kind of phoned it in for the second. I thought we would get over this attitude that we "should" get through and really play well. Just doesn't seem that we are clicking on all cylinders - and I thought we would for this game (hopefully for the final). We squeak through which is great - never been to a World Cup Final before! Super excited about that.

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As expected, the public transit is horrific after the game - not really sure what they were thinking. We made it back, but would here later that some didn't (and were left stranded as the public transportation ran hour(s) after it's normal end times). For a big city, the public transportation just doesn't seem very straight-forward. It's a long day/night and we just crash well into the wee hours of the morning.

Posted by M6-Greg 01:31 Archived in France

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