We cycled in the dark, as most days these days, got a little bit lost, then finally reached Carpentras where Nico’s relatives were waiting for us. After 6 months apart, it was with some emotions that we got greeted by the mum, uncle, little brother and his girlfriend in the house they rented for a week.
After the initial hugs, stories and lots of good food, we spent the rest of the evening next to the pool. A bit of luxury can’t harm, you know! The next day was a typical day in south of France : dry sausages, petanque and apero’s were on the menu, but no cycling. We took a day off before getting back on the saddle, heading towards Piegros, where we had a ‘plan’.
And swiming pool as well.
It needed us the whole day cycling to get to Piegros, more than 100 kilometers up north. The weather forecast were really bad, as storms were about to hit the area. Nevermind. Nico volunteered in Piegros’ castle few years before and we gave it a try, reaching the castle after climbing a huge hill…where Nico broke his chain after forcing on the pedals. We were luckily close enough to continue walking in the dark. “We’ll try to fix the chain tomorrow”, we thought. The castle was magnificent, overlooking the whole area…in pole position for the lightnings of the storm. We knocked at the door, but nothing happened…just a cat seemed to live there, despite some lights on in some rooms. After half an hour of shouting and knocking, we gave up, and start setting up the tent just next to the castle. Pity, the castle seemed to have enough room for 2 guests! We were without water but we looked around and managed to find a source nearby, where we filled our bottles.
The magnificent castel of Piegros
We camped as close as possible from the walls of the castle, as the wind was already about to blow the tent away. We got very lucky with the weather : the night stayed more or less dry, and we woke up on a dry ground. We quickly started fixing Nico’s chain (first time for both of us). It wasn’t the easiest bike repair we had to do, but somehow, it worked. We then hurried to go as the sky was threatening, cycled few kilometers then rain started falling, and falling, and falling more. We had the luxury to be near a big enough city, and we decided to take the train for the ride of the day, instead of cycling the storms.
Chain fixed time to go.
We arrived in Lyon in the evening, where the weather was as bad as it was in Piegros. We got in contact with Julie, the daughter of Alain, who hosted us a couple of days before, in Cote d’Azur. She welcomed us in the flat, where we could dry our clothes, take a shower and have some tea. Having a roof when it rains is a luxury we tend to forget, but this time we got to feel its true value! We clicked with Julie, who brought us out for some food delicacies in Lyon in the evening, and whom we spent two great days and nights. We had a pretty good feeling about the city : lot of arts, friendly, young people, good food, mountains and see at equal distance (2 hours drive), and great cycling paths! What else could we ask for? The second day, after a pretty fancy dinner made on our own (so good to have a kitchen at disposition!), we went out to have a feel of Lyon alternative music scene, with a Bass night in the basement of a little club. It wasn’t the most exciting venue, but good enough to keep the three of us alive until late in the night. The day after was about to be a hard day…but who cares?
good bye picture with Julie