The world really isn’t flat!!!!

We are,  in this very moment, in the ancient,  ancient village of Roquefeuil,  France, dating back to 1250, (pop 274) and at 3000 feet, the morning after our first climb in over a month –  loving it!!  We’re only around 15 miles – as the crow flies- from the Spanish border. But first things first…

The smack is back… Micky D!!   OK,  so we still pull our wallet out for the killer breakfast special and have to turn away from those yummy McFlurries,  but I now darken the doors with suspicion as it set the stage for a bad day. We took a high speed train (300 km/hr!) from Brussels to Paris and had 8 hours to burn so we did the tourist thing.

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We’re not in Del Norte anymore…

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But,  Paris is trying to be Del Norte…

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We hopped onto the Micky D wifi before catching our train to Toulouse. That’s when the shyst happened.  I was at a counter and a woman came up to me and started taking away in French while her accomplice lifted my phone.   Stressed me out because of some security and password issues and pissed me off big time.   Just saying!!  With that said… On to Toulouse..

We caught the “slow train” (relatively) from Paris to Toulouse at the d’ Austefliz Gare.  Little did we know how awesome a 7 hour train ride could be.   Since we had bikes we were logically put into a bike car,  but it was also the “family”  and handicap car.  We had a whole little room to ourselves where we read,  I knitted,  Gary slept,  caught up on emails and spent our usual hours talking routes and researching.

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The key is, folks…  Look for the car with the life sized kids and the bikes painted on the outside.  Awesome.

Toulouse is another big city (600,000 including surrounding area), so having had an over kill of cities,  we went to the bookstore, got the maps we needed and headed out of town south along a path that ran next to  Canal du Midi.  With a welcomed light headwind to keep the 86 humid degrees at bay,  we wound through locks and forests and flowers,  leaving the city stresses behind.   All through Europe we’ve been eyeing the barges and freighters that people have turned into houses,  more so in Holland where canals weave communities together,  however on the Midi they seemed particularly appealing. We can see us living on a boat someday.

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From the Midi we at began climbing through beautiful old villages and rolling farms full of texture and color.   We rolled into Salles-sur-I’Hers where the shop keepers enjoyed practicing their English on us.   They invited us to camp at their lake which we did and enjoyed swimming in the warm water… Paris was starting to recede from our memories.

The morning brought us riding through yet more texture and history into Mirepoix.   The sound of drums sent us searching only to find these guys in the town square.   OMG.. They rocked!!

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The afternoon brought us to our first climb

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Through yet more texture

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To Roquefeuil where life is… Rolling with the moment. 🙂

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We would happily take these golden fields over the golden arches any day!!!

Patti

In case the bike geeks out there are wondering…  I’ve not had any mechanical issues at all to deal with.   We’ve ridden a bit over 1200 miles now.   Other than a couple of clicks on PK’ s front derailleur and a few clicks here and there on the BB7’s I’ve done nothing other than lubing and wiping the chains.

Patti’s rear XT hub hasn’t loosened at all, I really torqued the locknuts and used loc-tite on them.  My rear wheel that I recently built hasn’t needed any truing at all.  Hopefully, our luck will hold.

Gary

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18 thoughts on “The world really isn’t flat!!!!

  1. G&P – another tip… I think you said you’re using Gaia GPS. They recently added chat support to their website. It’s only running when somebody is working, but it will be useful if you’ve got problems or questions about the app. http://www.gaiagps.com/
    The Contact Us (via chat) link is in the lower left, but may not be visible via mobile device, so if you’re desperate to get help from them you may have to find a computer at a library.

    1. Thanks Amy! Yes, it was Patti’s iPhone and it’s gone for good. I have an iPhone 4, that I found while riding the Divide last year. Mine has the Gaia app. Love it. I’m also using “Bike There” quite a bit, especially through cities. It basically alows Google’s ‘bike there’ mode on the iPhone. Thanks for the heads up on the Gaia help and I really like the idea on your phone holder/keeper.

  2. great photos!! I really liked the idea of the boats when I saw them in Paris while I was visiting and wondered what it might be like to live on one. The older towns and villages in Europe are fascinating and, of course, full of history. Really too bad about the phone…you don’t have the “Find iPhone” app? If not, you probably ought to have it for the remaining iPhone. How’s the external battery working out for you? Thanks for staying in touch with all of us.

    1. well, after some thought, I realize that asking about the “find iPhone” app was a moot point since you now only have one. But, if you find yourselves back in Paris, it will still find Patti’s phone as soon as someone lights it up….I really hate thieves.

      1. Hi Woody, I have ‘Seek Droid’ on my tablet and I have both of my devices locked. Patti didn’t. I’ll check into the find iPhone app. We have used your battery. The phone is easy to keep charged as we only use it for maps and the occasional GPS check. The tablets are harder to keep charged and we’re considering something more to help with that.
        Gary

      2. No, sadly I didn’t put that app on this phone. It was on my to do list. Yeah, I was pretty cranked up about it for a few hours there after it happened.

        Patti

  3. I happen to know of a great location where many people live on boats, that happens to be really close to grandchildren…….Just saying.

    I myself think living aboard a boat would be cool. I got at least 18 years before I can even think about that one though.

    Bummer about the phone. Punks!

    1. Hee hee, you don’t need to convince me, but we can all try to convince PK.

      I’ll try to call soon. Our connection here isn’t adequate for Skype calls.

    2. Seriously. You are in the boat and water world so keep an eye out for a boat. Never know!! And yeah, those people who stole my phone were punks!!

  4. So sorry that your phone got lifted, but glad you came to your senses about the Golden Arches! You guys are looking good and 1200 miles under your belt your making tracks.
    What did you do on your Birthday Patti? Have fun in Spain, we will be thinking of you! Also I may have an opportunity to go to Peru with Brigida, I may go do that and then Mike and I will catch up with you two down the road??? xoxoxoxo

    1. Hey Kim.. When are you going to Peru because it’s in our stars, but maybe not until October or so. We spent my birthday morning with friends in Amsterdam and then headed to the Hague to see the Vermeer paintings.

      Love, pk!!

      PS.. We enter Spain this morning and so far the road here has been amazing.

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