I remember the first time I pronounced Reims, I did what many people do and pronounced it as Reems, but the pronounciation closer to Rraance. Fortunately I was enlightened and I have been trying to pronounce it correctly ever since.
I have passed Reims many times, but usually over the other side of the Belgium border; in order to avoid paying motorway tolls. But it has always been a city that wanted to see. This time around, I was going to go.
I stayed at the aires on Parc Léo Lagrange, access to the aires is barrier controlled, but free. I went into the Centre International de Séjour, where the receptionist was able to give me a code for the barrier. It is short walk into the city, which is dominated by the 13th century Gothic cathedral. Reims was where the kings of France were once crowned. Joan of Arc is known to have attended the coronation of Charles VII here.
I was fortunate enough to have arrived on the same day as two events based on illumination and music, the first one was at the Basilique St-Remi. I loved the Gregorian chants, with a simultaneous light show and commentary.
The second was a light show, no, it was more than a light show, it was a work of art. Unfortunately it the heavens opened up and the crowd quickly dispersed as the rain bounced off the streets. Me, I was wet to my skin, but smiling at my good fortune. Despite the weather, I had a great day in Reims. I will leave you with some of my favourite images of Reims Cathedral.