Trip Start May 14, 2008
9Trip End Jul 30, 2008
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Last time we posted we were in Nimes, a great, very tidy city with old roman ruins and an arena for bullfights; Since then, we rode to Provence, this was a wonderful cycling area. Between the Rhone and the Durance rivers was a flat stretch with many farms and farm stands, we stopped at a few of these and managed to buy fresh fruit, a salad worth of veggies, and wine, then the farmer gave us a free melon (to die for) all for 6€! One morning in Provence, we got lost and found ourselves climbing steep hills, then we were at a castle, at least when you get lost here you find great things. Such as yesterday here in Dijon when we inadvertantly found Notre Dame!
Heading North out of Provence into the western edge of the Rhone Alps, the weather turned foul. Having had a few days of warm and calm, it was now windy,extremely steep, windy, rainy, windy, soaking wet, cold. Yay. But on a more positive note, the countryside was gorgeous. We rode through lush forests, rolling pasturelands of cattle, wheat fields and charming lively towns. Unfortunately, the farmstands, became less frequent. At one farm, we rode down the hill to their vending stand having seen a Produce sign, to find that the only produce they had was white asparagus, sold only by the kilo. Guess what we had for dinner... a kilo of asparagus, and couscous. Unfortunately, that much asparagus is apparently bad for one's digestive fauna, and we have since been searching for probiotic yogurts.
Out of the Rhoe Alps into Burgandy. The hills have become less steep, almost flat, the rain stopped day before yesterday, and the wind is now a light breeze! We discovered Camping a la ferme. These are small campgrounds, on private farms, that have very few parcels. The one we visited was an equestrian center, with a hot shower, a free outdoor kitechen, and very cheap kir. It also cost about half the price of a big camping. As for archetectural features, Burgandy has huge barn-house-garage-workshop buildings, easily 50meters long and often beautiful brick and timber construction
Now we are in Dijon, an amazing city! We rode a bike lane for 15km into the city, there is alnost no traffic in the old town, lots of people commuting by bike. The buildings here are amazingly hodge-podge in styles, but all are lovely. Lots of them have wood or stone carved faces, and the cathedral of Notre Dame is covered in gargoyles!
After Dijon, we plan to head toward Cholet to catch the Tour's time trial there. Not sure if we will be able to do a post for a long while. We prefer to avoid big cities. Hope all of you are doing well and pleqse know that we are reading your messages, and loving them, but we don't have enough internet money to respond to all. Keep writing us notes though!