It’s hard not to get upset sometimes by the unusual opening and closing times of some places in France but it seems to be more common with me when I travel because things that I really want to see are more often than not always closed. It’s so frustrating. Case in point is the Roman amphitheatre in Lillebonne. I already knew that it was undergoing some excavations and that it had only recently been reopened to the public but what I couldn’t find out from the internet were the opening and closing times. Wouldn’t you know it; I arrived just five minutes after they had closed the gates. I guess it wasn’t a really big deal since most of the amphitheatre can be easily seen from the road in front of the municipal museum. It was built in the first and second century and the central arena follows the usual plan of amphitheatres in northwest Gaul, where all kinds of spectacles were held (mythological scenes, gladiator fights, performing animals, hunts with small game). The crowd watched from the cave, a series of stands probably made of wood. In the nearby park are the remains of a fortress rebuilt in the 12th and 13th centuries by William the Conqueror who assembled his barons here before invading England. Once again, entry to this was closed.