Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Last Day in Orange, France

One reason we decided to stay in Orange was to see ancient Roman theater.  Its status as the best preserved Roman theater earned it a place on the UNESCO World Heritage sites list, so after the Pont du Gard, it was the next "tic" on our list.   Since I couldn't get a photo of the entire theater, I'm sharing this one from the UNESCO web site so you get an overview of it.  Can you see that the seats are built into a hillside?  And that the stage wall is very tall and well preserved?

We used an audio tour as our guide, so each of us had a kind of recorder we wore around our neck that gave us information about different aspects of the theater as we explored it.   This was pretty cool since we could each move at our own pace and interests.

The theater is still used today to put on productions and the stage crews were getting the scenery in place for the next event, which I think is Turandot, opening the end of July.  It was interesting to watch as they were having some trouble getting the last column to fit! 

From the audio guide we learned all about how the Romans experienced the theater.  Everyone went; the tickets were free but you sat with others of your class; and that they rooms built into the hillside behind the seats were used for refreshments and lounging, much like in our current stadiums.

After touring the theater everyone except me was ready for a rest.  So I took the opportunity to walk around Orange and take a few pictures of the architecture and plants, which remind me so much of what we saw in the Carribean.  As you look at these, feel the dary heat of a 90 degree and the constant strong wind.  No wonder everyone was sleepy.     

We went back to Pont du Gard later in the day and the boys jumped off the rocks into the water while I swam near them.  It was so nice.  And then off to our last dinner in Orange.  Today we head up to Auxerre for the night before we fly home tomorrow. 

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