Pyrenees Trip Report - day 15

Our last day (or 2).
Today we leave on the 6pm bus, and there's idle talk of an early start to rush the Breche, but no way is there time to do that safely, after a more realistic surfacing at 9am.  The weather clears and we pack up in first gear, leave our bags and treat ourselves to the long promised crepe and coffee - its midday by the time we take the leisurely path on the opposite side of the valley.

It leads gently to the fantastic Plateau de Bellevue and we stop for lunch there.

This way offers a much more certain start to a route for the Breche, to be remembered for next time, and affords majestic views of the cirque - it's name is well earned.

We take a cicular path down to a bridge at la Prade, pick up our bags, get some gifts, and jump on the bus.

Its takes about 2 hours to Lourdes, a bizarre and somber place, almost empty in the moody evening light.  The train is filled with pilgrims from India, Africa, Italy and closer to home, some carrying gallon cans of water.

In the morning, we eat breakfast, go for coffee twice, and wonder in Paris for a couple of hours.

Then we make our way to the Albert Kahn museum.  A banker who commissioned 15 amateur photographers to travel the world making images of ordinary lives being lived, in order to promote world peace before, during and after WW1, Auntie Beeb made a great series in conjunction with the museum and I've been dying to go see.  If you are interested in history, sociology or anthropology - forget that, if you like people and photography, go here, now.

Its two euros to get in, the museum is small but has great presentations for all ages, lots of films and slides and a vast but accessible archive, and Kahn's garden is the most lovely piece of groomed land I ever stumbled around in.  Our way doesn't end with bang or a whimper, but just quietly and in calm, in the same spirit as the walk.

There was a message in the text on a display case, which chimed for me.

'Inland, the photographers from the Archives of the planet discovered a countryside marked by what Jean Bruhnes called 'the subordination of the plant world to human will'.