Friday, May 21, 2010

Friday, May 21, 1920

This morning we were called at 4-30, breakfast 5-15 and left hotel at 5-45. We had a short ride back to Cutoz where we changed cars for Lyons. It was a cloudy morning. Scenery not very good. Passing fields and fields of real poppies in bloom - Miss Leyborne read us the poem written by the Canadian physician, Col. John McCrae, beginning - “In Flanders Fields the poppies blow etc.” This section of France seems very, very old and not up to date. Roofs ready to fall in and everything in a general run down condition. Only the crimson poppies seem to be in the present, and grow even between the ties of the R.R.

At Lyons we find French soldiers in their blue uniforms guarding the bridges and depot. The city seems to be large, and full of life. I think it is the second largest city in France. We attract much attention on the streets as we unload at hotel.

We visited the Museum De Tissue and were shown all kinds of fine fabrics from the early day. Costumes worn by Empress Josephine etc., etc. and the looms used to weave the silk. We walked down to the boats on the Rhone river, where the women were washing on flat boards with a brush and coarse soap, rinsing in the river and hanging the clothes on the rails to dry. The clothes were very coarse and a bad color. Women lifted the tubs of water with little or no effort.

We are shocked at the “Comfort Stations” on the street for men and the drinking of the people. We met people from Pittsburg at our hotel and also another group of men were speaking English and were Americans. To-morrow we leave for Paris.

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