Today was meant to be a rest day, a sort of “recharge the batteries” day.
…only one problem, what to do?
I admit, I made a bit of an administrative error staying at a hotel without a swimming pool, but the food more than makes up for that; tonight Magret de Canard, for example!
So what does a long distance motorcyclist do on his day off?
Go for a ride on his bike, that’s what!
To be more precise, go for a lightweight spin up Cime de la Bonette without the encumbrance of luggage, do a bit of exploring and have a nice picnic lunch on the high alp.
All of which came together perfectly.
We got out good and early and managed to reach to summit before the hoards descended. The big Cols often get busy late morning and mid afternoon, so if you want to have a bit of peace either go early or aim for very late afternoon/early evening.
We did a bit of trundling around at altitude and some on-foot wandering around, which at altitude was a tad tough, then found a lovely spot off the beaten track to enjoy lunch.
The altitude thing is interesting and effects people in different ways. It’s generally agreed that doing what I did, going up quickly and then trying to do some strenuous exercise like hike-climbing isn’t a great idea; I can agree with that. You really need more time to acclimatise than I had, my body is used to living at 600ft above sea level in Cornwall, not 9400ft in the high alps!
This afternoon I got Harls fuelled and sorted for tomorrow then planned to have a quiet time doing some writing or maybe having a little snooze, but somehow it didn’t happen and I sort of trundled into supper time…which is where I am now!
The highlight of the evening so far, apart from the Magret de Canard which is incredibly good, has been watching Madame, the hotel owner, giving five German bikers a good dressing down for turning up for dinner in their riding leathers. Then telling them that they smell and sending them off for a shower before she serves them and even then that they must sit outside on the terrace! Priceless!
She winked at me as she strutted past after delivering her instructions; this formidable lady has a sense of humour without a shadow of doubt!
As for the Germans, well they seem to have slunk off for the shower as instructed!
It’s good to have standards.
Catch you soon.