Peering through the window of the train carriage in which both German and Allied high command sat when signing the Armistice of Compiegne was a captivating experience…to later find out that the carriage was merely a replica, was something else. Visiting The Glade of the Armistice, a museum honouring the German surrender in November 1918, was the best possible way to spend a lunch break, at least for history students. Photos, artefacts, authentic wartime uniforms and even the detailed replicas all contributed to a wealthy display of French and Allied Nationalism. What was more impressive, however, was the diverse array of foods. Some boys dipped their bread in olive oil and vinegar, whilst others enjoyed the lusciousness of a ham and cheese sandwich. All in all, the boys truly found themselves at home with a baguette in one hand and a piece of history in the other.
We started off the day in Paris and most people went to a local boulangerie around the corner and bought some fresh baguettes and other types of pastries. It was great to find some food away from the tourist spots of France. Instead of having to pay 12 Aussie dollars for a slice of pizza at the Louvre, we payed 1 Aussie dollar for a large sized baguette. We went here and to the local supermarket to buy food to have a sort of ‘picnic’ at our first stop at the armistice wagon museum in Compiegne. Once everyone had checked out, we numbered off as usual, and worked for about ten minutes to meet up with our bus driver, Louis. The bus ride took about one and a half hours and most people caught up on a bit of kip after our long and tiring day in Paris. After we stopped off and visited the spot of the Armistice signing (as written above), we continued on our way to Amiens and this final bus trip was around 45 minutes. On the way to Amiens
We arrived in Amiens after a scenic drive through the picturesque French country side. We were greeted in Amiens by a warm afternoon sun that came as a pleasant backdrop to this quaint country town. After we checked into our hotel we walked around Amiens and explored the lane ways and canals with glee. Some of the boys went for a quick shop in stores including footlocker, H&M and footlocker. After our brief tour of Amiens, we visited the gothic cathedral that was located in the centre of town. It was a sight to behold as it was larger than the world famous Notre dame cathedral in Paris. After this we went for dinner in a local French restaurant that came as a pleasant surprise. Traditional French food was the order of the evening. There was a brilliant view of the sunset as it set over the Somme river that flowed alongside where the restaurant was situated. After dinner we were granted more time to explore Amiens. As we were walking we encountered some French youths playing football. We offered our best however they were no match as both Raymond Huang and Jason Archis fell victim to their superior ball handling skills.
All in all, it was a fascinating day with great views to boot. After an early and long day yesterday, it was a great day to recover with a relaxing time in the small, quiet town of Amiens. Being in bustling cities for the first part of the tour, it was a great change of pace to walk around in this French country town and enjoy all the spoils, this town has to offer.