Stories

Metz, a 3.000 years old town

by Jorge Sanchez - 2 years, 10 months ago

I reached Metz by train. The building of the railway station is listed as a Monument Historique, and showed friezes, stained glasses and capitals. It was built by the Germans in the twentieth century, but rather for military purposes. When walking around Metz I noticed metal plaques on the floor, they were signs for the pilgrims going on foot to Santiago de Compostela en Spain. The Tourist Office is located in the Cathedral Square. I went in and was given brochures and a plan of the city, for free. The Cathedral of Saint -Étienne was a huge , gigantic work . I was impressed much more than Nancy Cathedral. In the brochures that I had just been given in the Office of Tourism was stated that the surface of the windows (6,500 m ) is the world's largest. Three of these windows were made in the twentieth century by the Russian-Jewish painter Marc Chagall (born in Vitebsk, Belarus today ) . That cathedral reminded me that of Leon in Spain. Only for that cathedral the visit to Metz is justified. In fact, although Metz does not has a UNESCO Patrimony of the Humankind (as Nancy has) I liked more Metz than Nancy. Nancy is situated on the banks of the Moselle River ( which flows into the Rhine). It is a city 3,000 years old and now has a population of about 120,000 inhabitants, more than Nancy. During my walk from the train station to the cathedral I saw what looked like a triumphal arch and actually was called Porte Serpenoise and it was an entry into the walled city of Metz in ancient times, rebuilt in the mid- century XIX. It looked more like a triumphal arch. At the beginning of the pedestrian street I saw a replica of a Roman origin column decorated with statues dedicated to Apollo, Juno , Minerva and Hercules, plus several busts replicas which originals are housed in the " Cour d' Or" Metz Museum. The old part was called Village Taison, and where more time I spent, wondering and breathing the pleasant atmosphere. It was Thursday , the day of couscous in France (as in Spain it is the paella ), and as it was lunch time, therefore I walked into an Algerian restaurant in Village Taison where I ordered the typical North African dish of couscous, which is based on semolina with chickpeas, carrots and vegetables with lamb . I knew from the Tourist Office about the Pompidou Art Centre, but preferred to dedicate more time to my next stop : Thionville .


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