Lourdes, the Desperate and the Tat.

July 15th 2019

We’re on Lourdes for 2 reasons.

1. It’s famous and we’ve never been. So why not?

2. It’s close to Col du Tourmalet. The Tour de France goes up it on Saturday and this gives us a chance of seeing it.

So, Lourdes. It’s a Catholic shrine. In 1858 a 14 year old girl, Bernadette (later to become a saint) saw the Virgin Mary by the river and the rest is history.

More than just a shrine it’s become a place where the sick and disabled come to get healed.

Basilica of the Immaculate Conception

It’s a city of two halves.

There’s the half with the amazing Basilica, the chapels, the domes and the churches, where the devout come worship.

Then there’s the half where, after failed healing sessions in the Basilica, the sick and infirm are wheeled-off to buy, What can only be described as, horrendous tat.

If a Priest can’t fix you then let’s try a Snow-globe.
Time to buy a Virgin Mary Ashtray

The area devoted to plastic statues, dreadful paintings, key-rings, holy water containers and Jesus Snow-Globes, is far larger than the area taken up by the church.

I love tat and poor taste. I love Blackpool and, if I went, I know I’d love Las Vegas.

It’s a wonderfully contrasting city, well worth a visit, like Blackpool in the Sun….with a Cathedral or 3.

Ch√Ęteau Fort
The beauty….
…and the Tat.

Anyway, we’re here another night and then, Thursday, we’ll attempt to find a spot on Col du Tourmalet.

It will mean being off-grid until Saturday evening but I suspect even 3 days may not be enough to bag a good spot. We’ll see. If not we’ll park somewhere back down the route.

Meanwhile, check out our neighbour’s caravan cover!!! We think it may be protection against hail, or conkers…who knows. 4 Yoga balls on the roof.

It’s a new one on me

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