Sunday, May 1, 2011
Mont Saint-Michel in Normandy.
The rocky island was once called Mont Tombe (The Tomb on the Hill). In 708, the Archangel Michael appeared to Saint Aubert and instructed him to build a church on the island. Saint Aubert repeatedly ignored the instructions until the day when the Archangel Michael burned a hole in Saint Aubert's head with his finger. What a way to get a guy's attention! The church was built.
The island is connected to the mainland by a thin strip of land that lies naturally under the water at high tide. Although today, it is kept high and dry for easier access to the island.
It is dangerous to walk about on the beach as the tide comes in "à la vitesse d'un cheval au galop" or "as swiftly as a galloping horse"as was written by Victor Hugo.
A garrison was added in the early part of the 15th century. Among the many ghostly legends, one of the most famous is that of the ghost of Louis d'Estouville, commander of the garrison in 1434. He successfully fought against the English in the Hundred Years' War, and it is said that the sand was red with the blood of two thousand Englishmen. Ever protective of his precious Mont Saint-Michel, his ghost stands guard to this day. Wouldn't want him spilling my blood on the sand!
Mont Saint-Michel was amazing to see. We made the mistake of going on Easter Sunday and there were thousands of people which drove me insane. Mon fils and I found a nice sunny perch high up on one of the walls and sat chatting for a couple of hours. It was lovely.
Gros bisous des legends de fantômes et a demain!