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Day 27 - 31

Day 27 06/14/23

Woke up to fresh croissants, jams, butter, plenty of coffee and orange juice served by our Home Camp host. It was a great way to start off our day. We said our goodbyes to Sophie and headed out.

It was another beautiful day and it was our third day riding along a canal. I wish I could name all of the towns and villages that we pass through but there are far too many and the pronunciation eludes me. Everytime we think we have it right we are sadly mistaken.

As we rounded a corner we saw this fairy tail Chateaux up ahead. We need to look up the name but suffice to say the structure was beautiful and seemlessly built right into the rock. Just down the trail we came upon Craing and Susie. Craig had broken two spokes so we stopped to help and get them back on the road. A few pedals later we ate a nice lunch with cheese, bread, cherries, yogurt and some nuts. Far better than a protein drink out of a bottle while riding across the US.

Sarah is working on her French. A man stopped to talk to us about the brims on our hats. He spoke to her in French to which she replied back in French, "Do you speak French?" He said, I do! She had meant to say, in French, "Sorry I do not speak French, do you speak English." He stood there for a moment looking a little bewildered until he finally asked in English, "Do you speak English?" We need a little help with our foreign language.

We ended the day cooking dinner and enjoying a bottle of wine recommended by our French friend, Pierre. Off to bed with a little pitter patter of rain descending on our tent.

Keep on rolling

Scott and Sarah

Rode 46 miles

 Day 28        06/15/23

Today started out with breakfast as usual, a bowl of granola filled with slices of apple, almonds and milk. I could eat that everyday but then again I love my oatmeal.

After the bike breakdown of yesterday we decided that we had to find a bike shop. Craig needed spokes and I needed the right tools to replace my spokes in case the time comes. We have found it very hard to find bike shops in France. You would not think that to be the case but it is. We ended up in a small shop but they didn't have enough spokes nor did they have the tools I needed. They recommended we head over to Decathlon. We are beginning to be regulars in that store.

We picked up some new clothes at Decathlon but no tools or spokes. That will have to wait for another day. We still had 30 miles to ride so Sarah and I got back on the trail while Craig and Susie headed back to town for lunch. We arrived at the campsite and the woman at the reception counter saw our parched faces and immediately offered us a nice cold glass of water. It was perfect!

We all showered and went out for dinner.

Back at the campsite we played Farkle and kept an eye on the camp goats who roamed freely. We were concerned a few socks or shirts or whatever would go missing but they behaved themselves. By 8:3O we were ready for bed.

Keep it rolling

Scott and Sarah

Rode 62 miles

Day 29          06/16/23

Today was a grand ole time. With 21 short miles we rode into Nantes with much of the day before us and a hotel to lay our heads. We parked our bike and dropped off our panniers at the hotel and set out to explore. We visited the Chateau de ducs of Bretagne and walked around its walls. Next, we visited a beautiful indoor mall (Passage Pommeraye) in the older part of the city. The history of Nantes stretches back thousands of years but most of Nantes was levelled during WWII.

Just outside the chateau wall we found a nice place for lunch. Both Sarah and I had the Plat de jour. It was a Crepe with cheese and a sunny side up egg covered in a fresh mushroom and cream sauce. It was served with fresh apple juice and a dessert. The dessert was another crepe with either a chocolate sauce or Carmel sauce drizzle.

We were stuffed and had to walk it off before we headed back to our room. We were resting at the hotel when, around 4:00pm, we felt the building shake. Sure enough, we were blessed with an earthquake. No big deal being from California.

The evening came and we met with Keith and Carmen McFaul who pastor a church here in Nantes. We all went out to dinner and had a great time sharing our stories of life. Before we knew it the clock struck 11:00pm and we called it a night. It always amazes how you can meet an absolute stranger for the first time and get right down to friendship. We may never see them again, although we hope we do, but we have a lot of time on the other side of eternity.

Keep it rolling

Scott and Sarah

Rode 21 miles

Day 30 06/17/23

We spent the morning doing laundry at a laundromat in Nantes. All the unpleasantries of life don't just vanish when you are on a bike tour. You do have a lot less to wash, and a lot less to wear when you are washing (see the tourists below). We had planned a short day again so we took our time. Back on the road, the first stretch took us through some lower income areas; but soon we were back out in the countryside enjoying the beauty of nature.

One wrong turn and we found ourselves on a hilly, narrow and densely overgrown single track trail that we followed for about a mile. It seems that there is always one surprise during each ride but we managed to make it through to a good road. We arrived in the quaint little town on Oedon. A quick stop at the grocery store and on to our campground.

We all showered and walked into town to see the castle. According to the weather report we are expecting some rain tomorrow so we made it a short evening and headed to bed in anticipation. We were not surprised when the rain came. What we didn't anticipate was our neighbors serenading us with rap music until 3:45 am. Not the most restful night but tomorrow is a new day.

Keep on rolling

Scott and Sarah

Rode 20 miles

Day 31           06/18/23

Our new day started with broken skies and no rain! We were glad that we didn't have to pack up a wet tent. Just a short ride into town and we stopped at a Pattisserie to pick up a baguette and some awesome baked doo-dad's. In no time, we had those consumed were back to the peddles. We knew there was a very real possibility that it was going to rain later in the day so we made fast tracks.

Most of the day was on back country roads that provided much of the same scenery so we didn't shoot many pictures. There were only 8 miles left to reach our destination when the heavens started to let loose. At first, it was a nice gentle rain that stopped and started and stopped again. But the pace picked up until it was a torrential downpour.

Our problem came in the way of navigation. Both of our phones got wet and quit working. So we started looking for a place to get out of the rain and thankfully found a bridge. We were soaked to the bone. Our shoes were filled with water as well as all of our panniers. We got our phones dried out a bit and they limped back to life. We were now about three miles out of the town of Angers. Muddy trails would usher us into the city. Remember in a past post I said that I had broken my fender and was wondering how things would roll without it ? Well now I know...lots of water everywhere.

Arriving at our Airbnb we looked like drenched French poodles. We had mud all up and down our legs and all over our panniers. Showers were first on the agenda and then we began the process of finding ways to creatively dry things out. We are taking the day off tomorrow to look around town and get ourselves rested and dried out.

Keep on rolling

Scott and Sarah

Rode 47 miles

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