20190608_105243“This station was built in 1922 on the same site of the one burned down by the Germans on 2nd September 1914.” Poor Germans, always being blamed for their misdeeds, although in this case I can understand the French feeling a bit cross at the Germans about this.

A lot of water has passed under the bridge by now, a century later. The building is no longer a station and its users go to pains to inform us of this by means of a notice fixed to the door. No longer a train station, anyway, but you could still describe it as a bus station. I was twice interrupted by buses getting in the way to allow passengers to climb aboard while I tried to find the best position to take a picture.

Looking inside through the door on a Saturday morning, when the building was closed, I got the impression that it’s an educational establishment of sorts. At the back, there are no traces left of any rails. Instead there’s an open area leading off on both sides to a pathway into a park. A large billboard on one side at the front end advertises an ongoing ecological project in the area.

The building overlooks a garden at the edge of the old centre of the charming, medieval town of Senlis.

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You won’t find anywhere more ‘French’ than here.

The general aspect of Senlis’ huge gothic cathedral is rather similar to the Beast’s castle in Beauty and the Beast. (I’ve always wondered, by the way, how the Beast in the story doesn’t have a name at all. Even his beloved Belle calls him “Beast”, which is not very nice of her, in my opinion).

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Walking along the pretty cobbled narrow streets, you could almost expect the people who are going about their way in the street to suddenly burst into a choreographed song. Bonjour, bonjour, …

Another wonderful thing about this place is that it’s off the touristic radar. We walked around, alone, exploring the cathedral, an old abbey where the first of a long line of kings was crowned, really authentic shops selling flowers, cheeses, local produce …

I should resign my job, become a freelancer and live here. Or maybe open up a shop, Chocolat style. Although I’m sure I’ll need to face some strong competition from the locals, also Chocolat stlye.

 

Looking at the picture above of the cathedral square, the more perceptive nitpickers among my readers will quickly point out that there ARE in fact tourists milling around in front of the church. Yes, granted, but by modern standards it was indeed quiet and this was the only group that we encountered.

 

In the old abbey, in fact, we could really wander around alone all by ourselves…

 

If you wish to view more and nicer pictures than mine, have a look at the blog Paris Adèle , where you will also find a much better informed description of the town. I also realise, just by seeing the pictures taken there by Adèle late in the evening, that I may even need to visit for a third time …

 

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