and a canal

Week 8 Week 9 Week 10
All the time I was in France, there were strikes. But never encountered anything visible. Until I reached Nantes. A LOT of garbage everywhere. But glad that I've reached the Bretagne, even though I was cheating a bit, I took a train. The original plan was to do this part later, didn't happen, but still glad that I took this shortcut. Can't wait to be at the sea again.
Where the 373 kilometers took me
Fri, 21. Apr 2023
Day 44

This even can't be called a bike day. Just went quickly from Montmorillon to Lussac to get the train. First time train in France with bike. And oh well, considerably different from Italy. Way more expensive, way more restricted. Lots of trains, actually a whole day, was fully booked with bikes. I had to get a bike ticket for the TGV and the Intercity. One thing that is the same though: too small elevators. They simply don't fit the bike. In Italy you could sneak over the rails, which made it ok. Not possible in France. Magically, I haven't got any new blue spots on my legs.

I was only very brief in Nantes. But what I saw, I liked a lot. It reminded me of a mix of Rotterdam and Copenhagen, can't explain why. And it was very easy to get around with the bike. Next time I'll be there, I'll definitely try to stay there a day longer.

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Sat, 22. Apr 2023
EuroVelo 1 - grills seen in La Chevallerais

Finally a bit of a longer ride again. I feel that's a good idea generally. Not always possible due to accommodation. But will try to get more kilometres in the next weeks.

I'm officially in the Bretagne now! And on the #velodyssee. And on a canal. The rest days are over. All washing done, cleaned and oiled the bike. The bike shop unfortunately did not take me in, but therefore I got a galette :)

Looking very much forward to get to the coast and actually I'm already excited to get into the UK. Will need to start looking into the visa and the routes. But yay!

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Tue, 25. Apr 2023
EuroVelo 1 - my Surly Disc Trucker parked in Josselin, Bretagne

Canal, canal, canal. Not going to lie, enjoyed it. I still had a bit of dog in me and on canals, there are none. I do prefer the Nantes to Brest canal to the Canal du Midi as well. More changing landscape.

Along the way I could branch out a bit and get a Kouign Aman. This bakery got supposedly a medal for it. What shall I say it was really good.

I arrived in Josselin. I felt like I was in Hogwarts/Hogsmeade. So picturesque. But it had a very annoying quirk. Everybody I was talking to, talked back to me in English. Like very persistently. Fine. But the bad thing was that they hardly spoke English. Not to praise me, but I can easily hold a simple conversation in French. It made things so much more complicated and to be frank, quite a bit unpleasant. Sort of happy when I left. Never happened before in any other town.

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Wed, 26. Apr 2023
EuroVelo 1 - crepes at Ecluse 150 - Crêpes & Couette

that was a long one. With a bit of an interruption of the canal, getting into some hills. Very pleasant, missed them!

What I missed too? Food. The ride got quite a bit longer because I tried to get some. First try, I got only salted caramel. Second digestives and ginger beer. Strangely only an English supermarket was open.

Then, I saw what I thought was a cafe, wasn’t. But they pointed me to a Crêpe place. Just some 12 km down the canal. It was open. And what a great stop it was! So friendly, great galettes! In the end they were all waving me goodbye and saying: championne! Bon courage!

I finally made to an actually really great camping spot.

3000km are done!

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Thu, 27. Apr 2023
EuroVelo 1 - a muddy day on the bike

A rainy day. Not like pouring, but quite constant. Only canal, but really sandy. My bike and me got all dirty. I changed plans to be in a BnB. Gorgeous, for very much not a lot of money. But with a late checkin. So, I took the opportunity to take us to the carwash. The bike was good as new and I got my shoes as clean as they could get.

Lots of stops along the way to find cover. And very remote, no people for ages, no reception. I was quite spooked, when all of a sudden there were two dogs sort of waiting for me. They looked at me, I looked at them. Didn’t stop, but got slow and passed them. They followed me. No aggressive chasing, but definitely followed. I got a lot faster until I was at the next street crossing. They were no longer there.

After the car was I went to a little pub. And they were really friendly. All older guys. The owner gave me a postcard of the pub, so I would remember it.

Overall, great day! Only problem, my back brake basically no longer worked at all.

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Mood: happy :)