I'm enjoying the Tour de France on television in the mornings. I watch to see the countryside, but also get sucked into the drama of the racing. I cringe and look away at the crashes. Bicycling in France was one of my favorite vacations of all time.
In October 2002, Earl and I left the kids with my parents and went to France for 10 days. We rented bikes from Bourgogne Randonee in Burgundy. They delivered the bikes to Avignon in Provence for us where we began our tour. We traveled with saddlebags on the bikes and nothing else, so we really had to pack lightly.
This is me standing with the bikes. In the background on the left is the bridge from the famous song, Sur le Pont d'Avignon, and that's Avignon on the right behind me.
We had a very loose schedule planned on where we would stay each night. We pieced together some different bicycle routes from the book Bicycle Tours of France by Gay and Kathlyn Hendricks.
The first day was the hardest for me. Maybe because of jet lag, but also because we didn't take any chocolate with us along the way on the 40-mile ride. I think we pictured stopping at a 7/11 type store to buy something to eat. Bad planning.
|I need to scan this photo again to get it in|
the computer in a more usable form.
On the trip to Aix, we had lunch in a little village called Equilles. We could see Aix in the distance and we lingered over pork chops and green beans, along with glasses of rose. For some reason, we still consider that simple meal to be one of the best we've ever eaten. Maybe it was the fatigue, the ambience, the company.
This trip has been our high standard for vacations since then. We can't wait to move to France someday where we can take bike trips whenever we want.