Every year as we make our plans for our trip to France we pre-book some hotels (the first few nights in Paris and the last night near the airport). The other nights, as we make our way down south to the Dordogne or Provence, we like to explore and discover new places. This year we ended up in Bourges; a city I have never visited before. It is a beautiful city with an interesting centre ville, the Palais Jacques-Coeur and Cathédrale Saint-Étienne de Bourges.
Saint- Etienne cathedral is a gothic masterpiece. When you first see it, there are similarities between this one and the Notre-Dame in Paris. However, the interior of Saint-Etienne is larger then the Notre-Dame. The vaulted ceiling, higher then the Notre-Dame, is breath taking when you first walk in. There are 183 stained glass panels, dating from the 12 century, around the cathedral each teaching the ways of the church.
I was drawn to this statue set against the stain glass windows. The soldier, his sword indicates this, seems very at peace while he prays. But on closer inspection one can see while his face is calm, his hands appear to be clenched in prayer. If it wasn't for the colour in the stained glass, one could almost think you were seeing in black and white and that I took my picture in black and white.
I strongly recommend throwing away the map and taking that unknown road into a new village, town or city. There is always something new and breathing taking to discover in France.