Thoughts and tales from the saddle - on my own in Europe.

Saturday, March 31, 2007

Dat 19 - Arcachon

Like all the pro cyclists (ahem), I still get on the bike on my 'days off'. It keeps the legs loose, you see, and it's started to feel a bit strange if I don't ride the bike for a day, even if only for a few miles.

Since leaving the Ile De Ré I've ridden every day this week - Monday to Friday, averaging about 4 hours, and 40 miles, a day. It's been pleasant riding - the good people who govern the area of the Bassin D'Arcachon have taken it upon themselves to lay smooth tarmac cycle tracks through the dense pine forests, some way from the noisy roads. The forest also absorbs some of that wind, which is a bonus.

I stopped briefly in a strange little place called Lége-Cap-Ferret. I say strange because, even for France, it was dead. No bar, no cafe, no restaurant open. And the campsite was lacking a certain charm too, even less so at four in the morning when my tent felt like it was about to be ripped from the ground by the wind - either that or submerged by the amount of water falling from the sky.

I left that place pretty quickly and ended up here on Friday night - in Arcachon, at the only campsite open for miles (apparently). I decided on a day off today, a decision helped greatly by the presence of a bar on site, and have been riding the coastal path, enjoying (yes, enjoying, on an unloaded bike) the steep hills around the town and marvelling at the size of the houses and the amount of money that is obviously present here.

Once again, it is obvious that this is an entirely different place during the summer. I get the impression, and have been told, that it is positively 'heaving'. That was, in part, a reason for the cycle tracks, I think - to minimise deaths on the roads during summer.

I am, however, glad to be here at this time of year. It's much easier to enjoy the beauty and serenity of a place when it's not crammed full of people. It feels relaxed, like on the Ile De Ré. And the sun does shine, occasionally. Between the rain. But, you know, it can't rain all the time.


  • At 1:27 pm, Blogger Daisy Twoshoes said…

    If it's any consolation, it was tipping-it down here on Friday too.

    Sun's out now though, positively spring-like outside.

    Glad to hear it's all going well.

  • At 3:55 pm, Anonymous Herbie said…


  • At 4:07 pm, Anonymous Bella said…

    Hi! Happy Monday M'sieur... will email soon x

  • At 4:29 pm, Blogger Mike said…


  • At 3:21 pm, Blogger Percy Herbert said…

    Yes indeed, that was intentional. I thought it might be you who would get that, Herbie!

    Bonus point for the film, someone (else!)?


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