Not brilliant weather, but, much better than the last two days. Temperature is a mild 18C, and, most importantly, it is not raining, there is even blue sky showing.
The bicycles are unloaded, and we cycle, first to Lidl and Simply, to get some essential supplies, ie bread, washing up liquid and mushrooms.
Shopping done, we cycle along the banks of the River Soane, in the direction of Chalons.
According to the map, this is part of a cycle
track (Voie Bleu) which goes about 20 miles to Chalons. The surface starts good, ie tarmac, but, then becomes compressed dolomite. To me, it is fine, a little bumpy perhaps, but, it is not upto Kathleen's exacting standards, so, we will not be going 20 miles, that is for sure.
We turn back, after about 4 miles, not having seen another person, either driving, cycling or walking. Naturally, we almost immediately encounter four cyclists!
We return to the van, having cycled a little
over 10 miles in total, enough to blow the cobwebs away, after sitting around for two days.
The rest of today, is to be major "hair care" day. To explain, routine "hair care", requires the resources of a small power station, and takes about 30-45 minutes, "major hair care", requires the resources of a medium size power station, and takes about 1 - 2 hours, minimum.
As I have sometimes said before, in this blog, although most of the time, we are having a great time, sometimes, having to share such a small space, during periods of bad weather can cause, just a little, friction to develop.
Kathleen has a "thing" about crumbs. Apparently, I am the only person who makes crumbs. The latest idea, is to replace the van carpets with carpets of a darker colour, so crumbs will not show. I suggested, what I thought was a better idea:
- instead of vacuuming up the crumbs, collect them and keep them. Take them to a carpet shop and buy a carpet of exactly the same colour as the crumbs. Problem solved.
In order to stay out of harms way, I busy myself unloading the scooter, with the aid of our Dutch neighbour.
Like just about all Dutch people we have encountered, he speaks good English, and tells me an interesting tale as we unload the scooter. Apparently, contrary to popular belief, regulation of trailers, kit cars, and even street sweeping wagons are much more lax in the UK, than they are in Holland, and, indeed, much of Europe. The Dutch, in particular therefore, if they wish to purchase a trailer, or kit car, travel to the UK, but the item, get all of the official paperwork, to say it is road legal, then take it back to Holland, where, in accordance with free movement of goods legislation, the item is deemed acceptable in Holland. I have no idea if this is true or not, but, presumably, if it is, a nice little earner, is about to be choked off by Brexit!
Tuesday, 20th September 2016
It is dry, cloudy with sunny spells. A cool 16C in the morning. It turns out to be one of those days, where, you frequently think, it may rain, but, in the event, it doesn't, in fact, it turns out quite a pleasant sunny day.
The campsite notice board has a list of markets, nearby.
Now, markets are not really my thing, but, there is a market listed at a place called Cuisery, which is about five miles away, there is a small road to the place, so, it would make a reasonable ride out on the scooter.
It is not too warm so far today, perhaps 16C, so, a day for having the correct "gear" on. We find the place, no problem, but, Cuisery market is a big disappointment, even to me, there are only about eight stalls, one of which is selling fish, so, that is a no-no for Kathleen.
Cuisery appears to be a run-down little place, with an abundance of second-hand book shops, we counted no few than eight of them in one street!
After lunch, we decide to attempt to search out the Voie Bleu again, although, I feel, we were probably on a section of it yesterday, heading in the direction of Chalon.
Today, it is decided we will cycle in the opposite direction towards Macon.
Sure enough, we encounter a tarmac surfaced cycle track, sign-posted Voie Bleu, and running along the banks of the River Soane.
Kathleen is ecstatic, exactly her kind of cycling, smooth cycle track, no hills.
Macon, is about 25 miles, south, I suggest to Kathleen, perhaps we could cycle there. No chance is the reply, but, working on my usual theory, of "suggest 25 miles, you might get 15-20", I suspect, the seed has been sown.
I adopt my usual ploy, ie, say nothing, as the cycle computer clocks up the miles, and hope Kathleen does not notice. As we approach to 10 mile mark, a stroke of luck, we come to Pont Vaux, a rare bride over the river, this further distracts attention from the mileometer. But, not for long, another mile, and, Kathleen asks the question "so, when were you going to tell me we had done over 10 miles?". You have to be up early in the morning, to catch Kathleen out!
We cycle as far as a small town called Fleurville, where we stop for a refreshing beer, before retracing our route, to do just over 22 miles in total.
Although it is not in our edition of the Aires de France book, for anyone who may pass this way, there is an aire at Tournus, it is just along the road from the campsite, by the river, and within easy walking distance of the town centre. There are marked out spaces for about 8-10 vans, plus a small "overflow" area, and a service point. The co-ordinates for Aire Tournus are N46.567600 E4.910646.
We plan to move on tomorrow, so, the evening is spent loading the scooter and bicycles on the trailer.
If all goes according to plan, we will only be travelling some 40-50 miles, to La Clayette.